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‘Black Adam’ to Repeat Box Office Victory Over Quiet Halloween Weekend

Warner Bros
Warner Bros

Black Adam” is expected to retain its box office crown over the weekend — not that there’s much competition standing in its way.

With only one new nationwide release, Lionsgate’s supernatural thriller “Prey for the Devil,” the Dwayne Johnson comic book adventure “Black Adam” has plenty of space to repeat the No. 1 spot.

After opening to $67 million, “Black Adam” is projected to add $28 to $31 million in its second weekend in theaters, should ticket sales withstand a similar decline to “Shazam” and other standalone superhero origin stories. So far, the movie has earned $71 million domestically and $75.9 million internationally.

“Prey for the Devil” is hoping to take advantage of Halloween when the PG-13 horror movie lands in 2,900 North American locations. It’s expected to debut to $7 million to $8 million, a decent start given its low budget.

Plus, it’s been a killer market for horror. Except for “Halloween Ends,” which enjoyed a big opening weekend and then quickly collapsed at the box office, spooky stories like “Smile,” the buzzy slasher film “Terrifier 2,” and “Barbarian” have enjoyed a red-hot streak in theaters. With minimal production budgets, they’ve been able to turn an easy profit… and then some.

It’ll be a close race for second place between “Prey for the Devil” and “Ticket to Paradise,” starring Julia Roberts and George Clooney. The latter, a charming rom-com from Universal, looks to rake in $8 million to $9 million between Friday and Sunday after taking flight last weekend with $16 million.

“Prey for the Devil,” directed by Daniel Stamm and written by Robert Zappia, follows Sister Ann, a nun who believes she’s answering a higher call to be the first female exorcist. But who, or what, called her? And… why? In response to a global rise in demonic possessions (sure, why not), Sister Ann seeks out the Catholic Church after it reopens its exorcism school. There, she finds herself in a battle for the soul of a young girl who Sister Ann believes is possessed by the same demon that tormented her own mother years ago. Reviews are still under embargo.

Also this weekend, “Tár” is expanding nationwide to approximately 1,000 North American cinemas. Directed by Todd Field and starring Cate Blanchett as a world-famous conductor embroiled in a controversy of her own making, “Tar” has grossed $1.2 million to date.

Several high-profile movies will open in limited release, including James Grey’s semi-autobiographical “Armageddon Time” and the timely abortion drama “Call Jane” with Elizabeth Banks and Sigourney Weaver.

Focus Features is bringing “Armageddon Time” to six theaters in New York and Los Angeles over the weekend. Anthony Hopkins, Anne Hathaway and Jeremy Strong star in the film, which is inspired by Grey’s upbringing in Queens, N.Y. and grapples with themes of family, friendship, race and pursing the American Dream.

Variety chief film critic Owen Gleiberman called the movie “an effusive 1980 nostalgia trip.”

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