Week-in-review: Weekend Box Office, His Dark Materials And Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark

    The Nun Scares the Box Office Into Submission

    Supernatural horror The Nun came out last week and promptly took the first place at the weekend box office by grossing $53,8 million according to Box Office Mojo. Featuring Taissa Farmiga, Demián Bichir, and Jonas Bloquet, The Nun tells a story of a haunted monastery in the 1950s Romania. This is the fifth installment in an ever-expanding cinematic universe that began in 2013 with James Wan’s hugely successful horror film The Conjuring.

    In the second place of the weekend box office is yet another newcomer – revenge thriller Peppermint that earned $13,4 million in its opening weekend. In it, Jennifer Garner plays a soccer mom-turned-vigilante that, in the ultimate movie fantasy, manages to solve all the societal ills through an excessive use of violence with no collateral damage or negative side-effects whatsoever. Peppermint is closely followed by the romantic comedy Crazy Rich Asians with $13,1 million while in the fourth place of the weekend box office is The Meg with a bit over $6 million. Finally, in the fifth place is the thriller Searching with $4,5 million.

    BBC Orders the Second Season of Its Golden Compass Adaptation

    Deadline reports that BBC has just ordered a second season to its ambitious – not to mention expensive – adaptation of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy. Mind you, the first eight-episode season of this limited series hasn’t even finished shooting yet. While this decision might seem reckless at the first glance, it makes sense as the filming of two seasons back-to-back will probably help lower the overall production costs. In any case, this TV adaptation has drawn attention due to the cast that includes the likes of Dafne Keen (Logan), James McAvoy (X-Men: First Class), Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton) and Sarah Wilson (Luther, The Affair).

    First published between 1995 and 2000, Pullman’s series of Young Adult novels about alternate histories and armored polar bears conquered the bestseller lists, even while drawing controversy due to their distinctive anti-religious message. In 2007 New Line Cinema tried turning His Dark Materials into the new fantasy franchise in the vein of Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings. Adapting Pullman’s complex world-building and story about parallel realities into a two-hour movie proved out to be too much of a challenge and Golden Compass failed at the box office. However, in this era of Game of Thrones and online streaming, those same features that just might a boon that draws the attention of the worldwide audiences.

    Dean Norris Joins the Cast of Scary Stories to Tell in The Dark

    While for many viewers he’ll always be Breaking Bad’s Hank Schrader, Dean Morris has since moved on to other projects. One of them is the horror film Scary Stories to Tell in The Dark. According to Deadline, Norris will join the cast that, so far, includes Austin Abrams (The Walking Dead), Gil Bellows (Ally McBeal), Michael Garza (Wayward Pines) and Lorraine Toussaint (Orange Is The New Black). The movie will be directed by André Øvredal (Troll Hunter) and produced by the Academy Award-winning director Guillermo del Toro (Shape of Water).

    Scary Stories to Tell in The Dark is a trilogy of children’s horror books, first published in the early 1980s. While Alvin Schwartz wrote his stories heavily inspired by the folklore and urban legends, what undoubtedly helped makes them a cult classic were the unsettling black and white illustrations by Stephen Gammell. In 2013, CBS Films acquired adaptation rights for the books after which the project was stuck in limbo for several years. In 2016 del Toro came on board, first as a producer and then as co-writer. Scary Stories to Tell in The Dark is scheduled for a release sometime next year.

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