I am Obsessed with the Horror Box Office

Posted by Peter Hall - April 23rd 2008 @ 9:19 pm

I must be upfront. This post is a ruse meant to take the place of a later post. A blog equivalent of a Snickers bar. However, the reason for my lack of posts over the past two weeks still is not ready for prime time. So instead of that future piece of hard hitting journalism, which will take another week to prepare, at least, I give you this piece of information:

I have compiled a spreadsheet on my computer whose nerdiness is frankly fucking ridiculous. Found within the dark corners of my Excel cavern is a buffet of unnecessary information. Not only have I amassed a list of every theatrical horror film to play in over 500 theaters since the year 2000, but I have entered all manner of accessible data from their originality status (remake? adaptation?) to their opening weekend box office to their per theater average to their return on budget. I am no longer content with knowing that PG-13 slop like PROM NIGHT can pull in a $20 million opening weekend. I want to know just how much of a financial incentive there is to making a PG-13 horror film versus one with an R rating.

I must admit, the results are, to me at least, fascinating (Spoiler Alert: All is not as it Seems!) . While I have the results from the first round of comparisons (simple domestic box office averages, per theater averages, international totals, return on budget, critical rating etc), I have not yet made satisfactory charts, graphs and holographic projections of the final data. So, until then, I leave you with the list. I have tried to be as exhaustive as possible in reaching my theatrical count of 101 titles, but I am sure I’ve missed some. If you can think of a horror film (not Sci-Fi, not Spoof — horror) not on this list, please let me know and I’ll factor it into the dataset. Remember, the only qualification is that it has to have been released in wider than 500 theaters (and be closed at both a domestic and international box office, which is why THE RUINS, PROM NIGHT, and DOOMSDAY are not on there) and released after 2000.


28 Days Later

28 Weeks Later

30 Days of Night

Alien VS Predator

Aliens Vs Predator: Requiem

Anacondas: The Hunt for Blood Orchid

Black Christmas

Blair Witch 2


Cabin Fever





Dark Water


Darkness Falls

Dawn of the Dead

Dead Silence



Dracula 2000

Eight Legged Freaks

Exorcist: The Beginning

Fear dot com

Final Destination

Final Destination 2

Final Destination 3

Freddy Vs Jason

Ghost Ship

Ghosts of Mars




Halloween: Resurrection

High Tension


Hostel Part II

House of 1000 Corpses

House of the Dead

House of Wax

I Am Legend

Jason X

Jeepers Creepers

Jeepers Creepers 2

Land of the Dead

One Missed Call

Open Water




Resident Evil

Resident Evil: Apocalypse

Resident Evil: Extinction


Saw II


Saw IV

Scream 3

Secret Window

See No Evil

Seed of Chucky

Shaun of the Dead

Silent Hill



Snakes on a Plane

Stay Alive

TCM: The Beginning

Texas Chainsaw Massacre

The Amityville Horror

The Cave

The Descent

The Devil’s Rejects

The Eye

The Fog

The Forsaken

The Grudge

The Grudge 2

The Hills Have Eyes

The Hills Have Eyes 2

The Hitcher

The Invasion

The Messengers

The Mist

The Omen

The Orphanage

The Others

The Reaping

The Ring

The Ring Two

The Wicker Man

Thirteen Ghosts


Urban Legends: Final Cut


When a Stranger Calls

White Noise

Wolf Creek

Wrong Turn

That’s all for now.  Until the groundbreaking science finds its way to the interwebs, want to know the cumulative international box office returns for horror of all ratings since 2000?


Over Seven Billion Dollars.  From only 101 movies AND does not include any fiscal information regarding DVD sales, merchandise sales or TV licensing fees.

comments are closed
  1. Brian
    April 24th, 2008 | 1:47 pm | #1

    Dude, I sat here forever trying to think of a movie you missed only to come up with “Th3ee.” And then I found out its widest release was just under 500 theaters.

    I am defeated.

    Does “Fool’s Gold” count?

    * Oh shit, I just thought of one. And it is one of your favorites: The Abandoned.

  2. April 24th, 2008 | 2:28 pm | #2

    Ah, good catch. I looked up each of the After Dark flicks, but surprisingly few fit the criteria (or I just plain couldn’t find sufficient data for ’em).

    Thanks, now I have to go recalculate everything! :P

  3. Brian
    April 24th, 2008 | 2:35 pm | #3

    I’m gonna let these trickle out over the next few days so you continuously have to update your figures.

    One more for today: Hide and Seek.

  4. R.J. Sayer
    April 24th, 2008 | 5:16 pm | #4

    Skeleton Key

  5. R.J. Sayer
    April 24th, 2008 | 5:25 pm | #5


    The Return

  6. R.J. Sayer
    April 24th, 2008 | 5:29 pm | #6

    One of the problems with the After Dark titles (at least for the first year) is that they counted them all as one release: After Dark HorrorFest, so all the receipts are lumped together rather than distributed to each title.

    Also, the release schedule and showtimes were very strange.

  7. April 24th, 2008 | 5:49 pm | #7

    Thanks, fellas.

    Oh, I just wanted to point out, to this very day HATCHET still does not have any official box office statistics.

    I’m just saying.

  8. April 25th, 2008 | 12:42 am | #8

    the full feature film, “The LAN,” starring Thomas J, will account for 10% of that come 2009.

  9. April 25th, 2008 | 12:46 am | #9

    Exorcism of Emily Rose

  10. April 25th, 2008 | 12:48 am | #10

    American Psycho came out in 2000?

  11. Sean
    April 27th, 2008 | 10:15 am | #11



    I didnt realize that Bruiser was such a late movie.

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