With the country still struggling to contain the pandemic, Hollywood has mostly set its release schedule for the rest of 2020, and that's come paired with a certain understanding of what theatrical releases are capable of at the box office. Being the first blockbuster out since March, Christopher Nolan's Tenet created a high water mark in early September, making $20.2 million over an extended holiday weekend, but most big screen features since then have managed to top the charts by pulling in between $3.5-4 million. It was that amount of money that allowed Tim Hill's The War With Grandpa to steal Tenet's crown, and then Mark Williams' Honest Thief arrived a couple weeks later with that same total. November kicked off with Thomas Bezucha’s Let Him Go, which hit the high end of that range, and now we have the arrival of Christopher Landon's Freaky... and you can probably guess how much it made.
Per Box Office Mojo, the body-swap slasher flick is now the new number one movie in North America, and that's because it made $3.7 million in ticket sales since Friday. While major markets like Los Angeles and New York are continuing to keep theaters closed, the horror film opened on 2,472 screens across the continent, and because it also opened in 20 international markets its global haul currently sits at $5.6 million. Because Freaky is a Blumhouse release, it should come as no surprise to anybody that the movie wasn't made with a massive budget (non-sequels typically are usually made for $3-7 million) so there is a legitimate chance that the release will ultimately be profitable for the studio.
The film is Christopher Landon's follow-up to the sci-fi/horror feature Happy Death Day 2U, and stars Kathryn Newton as a high school girl named Millie who winds up accidentally switching bodies with a serial killer (Vince Vaughn). While the teen struggles to convince anybody of her real identity, the psychopath sees all kinds of opportunities to go on a murder spree while in somebody else's body. While our own Sean O'Connell wasn't enamored with it, writing in his review that it doesn't do enough with its high-concept premise, most critics have given it a thumbs up – leading to an 85% Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Addressing the release on his personal social media page, the Freaky writer/director acknowledged that there are a lot of movie fans who would love to see the film right now, but don't feel safe going to theaters – however, he also feels an obligation to help an industry that is most definitely struggling right now:
Christopher Landon also added that those of you who are really excited to see Freaky on VOD won't have to wait long, as it will be available in just a couple weeks:
It's worth noting that Freaky is a Universal film, and this particular distribution plan lines up with a deal that was made between them and AMC Theaters earlier in the year. Following a conflict that started in late March due to the PVOD release of Walt Dohrn's Trolls World Tour, Universal and the theater chain struck a deal in late July allows the studio to release their movies digitally without issue so long as they play on the big screen for 17 days first. To save you having to do the math, this means that the body swap slasher will be online starting December 1. (Universal is also pulling a similar move with Joel Crawford's upcoming The Croods: A New Age, which will be out on November 25 and online just in time for Christmas.)
With the Thanksgiving holiday coming up, we'll be curious to see if there is any kind of box office bump that happens, so stay tuned here on CinemaBlend for the latest numbers.