By Bloomberg
April 8, 2018

“A Quiet Place,” a horror feature starring real-life husband and wife John Krasinski and Emily Blunt, definitely made some noise in its debut weekend, dethroning Steven Spielberg’s “Ready Player One” and handing Paramount Pictures its first box-office win since June.

The feature from Viacom Inc.’s film division took in $50 million at U.S. and Canadian theaters, researcher ComScore Inc. estimated in an email Sunday. Spielberg’s adaptation of the popular dystopian story from Ernest Cline fell to second with $25.1 million, while the new Universal Pictures comedy “Blockers” opened in third place.

Paramount has been fighting to turn around under new management but its future is still unclear. Viacom is in talks to merge with CBS Corp., potentially recombining companies that were split in 2006. Heading into the weekend, the studio was in ninth place in domestic ticket sales for the year, according to Box Office Mojo.

Directed and co-written by Krasinski, “A Quiet Place” follows a family living in silence to avoid creatures that hunt by sound. A hit with critics, it scored 97 percent positive reviews, according to Rottentomatoes.com. The film, which cost $17 million to make, had been forecast to bring in as much as $34 million, according to industry researchers such as Box Office Mojo.

“Blockers,” a comedy with John Cena and Leslie Mann, brought in $21.4 million, versus a forecast of $19.5 million from Box Office Pro.

“Chappaquiddick,” about Ted Kennedy’s role in the 1969 death of Mary Jo Kopechne, brought in $6.2 million for Entertainment Studios to land in seventh place. Jason Clarke stars as Kennedy while Kopechne is played by Kate Mara.

The smaller release “The Miracle Season,” starring Helen Hunt in a story about a girls’ high school volleyball team, didn’t make ComScore’s Top 10 list. The film was by LD Entertainment.

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