Horror movie Don’t Breathe has scared off Suicide Squad from the top of the North American box office rankings.
The thriller made $26.1m (£19.9m) between Friday and Sunday, according to studio estimates.
It follows three teenagers who burgle a house but find that its blind owner is not as helpless as he appears.
With a budget of under $10m (£7.6m), it is already in profit, and its success has ended supervillain romp Suicide Squad’s three-week run at the top.
Don’t Breathe stars Jane Levy and was directed by Fede Alvarez, who worked together on 2013’s Evil Dead.
‘A bean counter’s dream’
It is the latest in a string of low-budget horror films to become box office hits, joining the likes of The Purge: Election Year, Lights Out and The Shallows, which have also found success this year.
“These are the films of bean counters’ dreams,” Paul Dergarabedian of box office trackers ComScore told Reuters news agency. “They are profit machines and even when they’re poorly reviewed, people line up for them.”
Rory Bruer, distribution chief for film studio Sony, said: “This film is going to be a big money-maker for us. We knew we had something special here.”
Suicide Squad was the weekend’s second most popular film with $12.1m (£9.2m) in ticket sales, taking its North American total to $282.9m (£215.6m).
The top five also included children’s film Kubo and the Two Strings, adult animation Sausage Party and Jason Statham-led sequel Mechanic: Resurrection.
Further down the list, the new Ben Hur dropped from fifth place to 10th in its second week, putting its running total at $19.6m (£14.9m).
With a reported $100m (£76m) budget, it is on course to be one of the year’s biggest flops.
Meanwhile, Southside With You, about Barack and Michelle Obama’s first date, took $3.1m (£2.4m) on a more limited release.
Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-37210931