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Dueling Demons

LOST SOULS debuts in 3rd place; EXORCIST slips to 6th but boosts intake.

By Steve Biodrowski     October 16, 2000

Despite the Friday the 13th weekend, horror films did not dominated the box office. Making its debut behind two returning films (Meet the Parents and Remember the Titans), Lost Souls took 3rd place, while The Exorcist settled into 6th place. Those were the only two genre films to find a berth in the Top Ten, last week's entries Digimon and Urban Legends having been pushed out by newcomers.

In the battle between new and old possession flicks, Lost Souls clearly won the weekend battle with $8.4-million, compared to $5.4-million for Warner Bros.' The Exorcist. The New Line thriller, starring Winona Ryder, played in nearly 2000 theatres, earning a per screen average of just over $4,250 per engagement. Meanwhile, The Exorcist expanded its release by just over 500 theatres, boosting its take by 22% during its fourth week of re-release. Long-term prospects, however, look dim for the upstart newcomer.

A Fandom poll conducted on Friday-Saturday, asking browsers to grade Lost Souls, drew only 41 responses, indicating that most horror fans didn't even bother to see the film. Of those who did, by far the biggest fraction graded the film with an F: 58%. Only 12% gave the film an A, and only 4% gave it a B; the remainder gave the film either a C or a D. Using a numerical scale (4 for A, 3 for B, etc), that gave the film a total score of only 42 and an average score of 1 (equivalent to a D). For a point of comparison, that was even lower than last weekend's debut of Digimon: The Movie, which fell out of the Top Ten after only one week.

Below is a list of studio estimates for this week's Top Ten films. Final figures will be posted tomorrow.

U.S. Box Office Top Ten 10/13 to 10/15/2000
1.Meet the Parents $21.3-million
2. Remember the Titans$13.5-million
3.Lost Souls $8.4-million
4. The Ladies Man$5.7-million
5.The Contender$5.5-million
6.The Exorcist$5.4-million
7. Dr. T and the Women$5.2-million
8.Get Carter$2.7-million
9.Best in Show$1.2-million
10.Almost Famous$2.3-million


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