Horror Cursed at Box Office

With the No. 1 bows of such recent chillers as The Grudge, Hide and Seek and Boogeyman, it seemed as though horror films were an unbeatable force at the box office. Now it appears the genre has been displaced by the urban comedy as Lions Gate’s Diary of a Mad Black Woman takes the top spot over Cursed, a werewolf flick from Wes Craven, director of A Nightmare on Elm Street and the Scream series.

Diary earned an estimated $22.7 million for the weekend, enjoying a much better bow than Cursed. Craven’s latest teen elimination round debuted at No. 4 with around $9.5 million. The disappointing opening is just the latest pox upon the troubled production, which was long-delayed due to a battery of rewrites and re-shoots that reportedly doubled its budget.

Written by Kevin Williamson (the Scream series) Cursed stars Christina Ricci, Shannon Elizabeth and Portia de Rossi in a tale that has teenagers going through even worse changes than puberty after being attacked by a mysterious creature. Contributing to the monster mayhem are the vfx houses Sony Pictures Imageworks, FX Cartel, Rez-Illusion, Klon Films, Luma Pictures and FOGstudio.

Sony’s Will Smith romantic comedy, Hitch, is hanging tough at second place, earning another $21 million to drive its three-week take up to around $122 million. Meanwhile, Warner Bros.’ CG-laden, comic-book-inspired supernatural thriller, Constantine, dropped a steep 60% in its second weekend to take third place with an estimated $11.8 million. Sony’s Man of the House, a odd couple comedy starring Tommy Lee Jones and Cedric the Entertainer, rounds out the weekend’s top five with around $9 million.