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‘It: Chapter Two’ fell short of the first movie in its US opening, but there are 2 big reasons it’s already a success

Business Insider

it chapter twoWarner Bros.

"It: Chapter Two" fell short of its predecessor over the weekend at the US box office, but that doesn’t spell defeat for the sequel.

The movie earned $91 million in its domestic debut, less than the $123 million "It" made in 2017, which had set the record for a horror movie’s opening weekend.

But there are two major reasons why "It: Chapter Two" will still be a blockbuster horror flick:

  • Even though it didn’t match the first movie’s opening weekend, it’s still the second-best opening for a horror movie of all time (before inflation). "This is still a great result for an almost three-hour, R-rated horror sequel," Paul Dergarabedian, the Comscore senior media analyst, told Business Insider. It beat out recent horror successes like last year’s "Halloween" and this year’s "Us," which both earned $76 million and $71 million in their debuts, respectively.
  • The movie grossed $94 million from 75 foreign markets, which is the biggest international premiere for a horror movie ever. The first "It" grossed $62 million internationally during its first weekend in theaters. "Chapter Two’s" global total so far is $185 million.

"It: Chapter Two" has received less favorable reviews than the first movie, with a 64% critic score on Rotten Tomatoes compared to the first movie’s 86% critic score.

But audiences appear to enjoy the movie more than critics, as it has an 80% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes based on over 12,000 user ratings (the first movie has an 84% audience score). "It: Chapter Two" also has a respectable B+ grade on Cinemascore, which surveys audience sentiment on a movie’s opening night.

Dergarabedian said the movie should have "long-term playability" over the course of its theatrical run. "It" ultimately earned $700 million worldwide and "Chapter Two" is already putting up stronger numbers internationally.

"The final global gross is what will determine ‘It Chapter Two’s’ ultimate box office status," Dergarabedian said.

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tclark@businessinsider.com (Travis Clark)

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