The Rental Tops Domestic Box Office (Or What Remains of It)

It is a hard time for the movie industry. Whatever hopes theater owners had of re-opening by July were crushed by the ever-growing number of COVID-19 cases as the pandemic continues all across the US. The only cinemas currently working are drive-ins, while most of their repertoire consists of familiar classics. Only new titles that earned profit are low-budget horror films, like The Wretched that managed to gross $2,8 million since it first came out on May 1.

According to Deadline, another low-budget horror flick titled The Rental continued dominating the weekend box office in its second week in cinemas. The first feature film by the actor Dave Franco (The Disaster Artist) follows two couples (played by Alison Brie, Dan Stevens, Sheila Vand, and Jeremy Allen White) as they rent an isolated beach house only to find themselves threatened by a voyeuristic killer. The Rental earned $290,300 last weekend, bringing its total gross up to $890,000.

The following four highest-grossing movies of the weekend are all re-runs. Richard Donner’s beloved adventure film The Goonies is in second place with $208,000. In the third place with $192,000 is Steven Spielberg’s sci-fi adventure Jurassic Park. Next is yet another Steven Spielberg film – Jaws – with $142,000. And in the fifth place of the last weekend’s box office is the musical Grease with $138,000. It is worth mentioning that the number of theaters these films played in varies considerably. The Rental and Jurassic Park were shown in over 250 cinemas. Jaws played in 195 cinemas, The Goonies in 156, while Grease played in only 83 theaters in the entire US.

Courtney Cox Joins the Cast of the Latest Scream Sequel

Courtney Cox (Friends, Cougar Town) will reprise her role of ambitious TV reporter Gale Weathers in the upcoming fifth Scream sequel, says SlashFilm. David Arquette will join her, once again playing seemingly hapless lawman Dewey Riley. Neve Campbell, who played the lead character Sidney Prescot, is in talks to return as well.

This latest Scream sequel has been in development for years. The project stalled because of — among other things — the death of the horror filmmaker Wes Craven who directed the first four movies in the series. Instead, this sequel will be directed by Radio Silence – aka, filmmaking duo Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett. They previously filmed dark comedy Ready or Not, horror picture Devil’s Due, and participated in anthology movies Southbound and V/H/S. Screenwriter Kevin Williamson, who helped create this franchise in the first place, will serve as an executive producer. Guy Busick (Ready or Not, TV series Castle Rock) and James Vanderbilt (Truth, Zodiac) will replace him as screenwriters.

The first Scream came out in 1996, infusing life in the slasher horror sub-genre by masking its characters keenly aware of its clichés and tropes. Its combination of humor and horror proved out to be extremely popular, leading to two sequels in just four years. A third and seemingly final sequel followed in 2011. However, Scream: The TV Series swiftly followed, airing for three seasons on MTV and VH1.

Amazon Prime Renews Hunters 

This week, Amazon renewed its conspiracy thriller series Hunters for a second season, reports the AVClub. Set in the gritty New York of the late 1970s, the show follows Jonah Heidelbaum (Logan Lerman – Fury), a young mathematician who joins a clandestine group targeting Nazi war criminals. Led by Meyer Offerman (Al Pacino – The Irishman), the group discovers how Nazis infiltrated the government with an intent to establish the Fourth Reich in the US.

Written and created by David Weil and produced by Jordan Peele’s Monkeypaw Productions, the first season of Hunters premiered on February 21, 2020. Upon its release, the show received mixed reviews, mostly due to its uncertain tone veering wildly between somber Holocaust drama and its grindhouse-style action. However, despite criticisms and controversy, the viewing numbers were apparently high enough that Amazon decided to renew the show for a second season. There is currently no information when will the shooting of Hunters resume since the coronavirus pandemic halted most other movie and TV productions.