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Us Tracking For $48 Million Dollar Opening Weekend

It's going to be a memorable weekend for Us.

Industry analysts are projecting the latest sojourn into extreme freakiness from horror maestro Jordan Peele to score an opening weekend in the $40-48 million dollar range, with some estimates having the flick breaking the $50 million dollar mark. (via The Hollywood Reporter)

This means that Peele's sophomore effort is extremely likely to clobber the $33 million dollar opening frame total posted by his 2017 masterpiece Get Out, which went on to gross over a quarter-billion dollars at the worldwide box office, netted the writer/director his first Academy Award for his original screenplay, and became a cultural phenomenon that's still sparking conversation today. Oh, and it was probably the straight-up best horror flick in a year jam-packed with them.

Us has an obvious advantage in being the follow-up to that film, but there are other factors working in its favor as well. It recently enjoyed an extremely buzzed-about opening at SXSW, with festival attendees and critics alike throwing around the kind of hyperbolic praise that was heaped on Hereditary last year. Then, there's the movie's Rotten Tomatoes score, which sat at a sterling 100% for some time after its festival debut. Of course, there will almost always be a few naysayers; as of this writing, the RT score has dipped to a slightly more reasonable 97%.

Finally, there the trailer for Us, which dropped on Christmas Day and is frankly way more terrifying than a not-insignificant number of the actual horror movies we saw last year. The rest of the flick's marketing has followed suit, with posters featuring ridiculously creepy images like the one above, and star Lupita Nyong'o — whom some have opined has delivered an Oscar-worthy performance — leaning fully into the scream queen angle with a delightfully unsettling appearance on The Late Show.

It all adds up to a perfect storm of momentum that you probably could have seen coming a mile away; every competing Hollywood studio certainly did. Us will be the only major release to open wide this weekend, with all potential competition steering clear of it as if it had Avengers in the title. Speaking of which, the flick is expected to finally unseat the newest Avenger's first solo outing. Captain Marvel, which destroyed all comers over its first two frames, is projected to actually simmer down just a bit after blowing past the $800 million dollar mark at the worldwide box office in less than two weeks.

In case the promotion for Us has somehow eluded you thus far, the movie tells the story of Adelaide Wilson (Nyong'o) and her husband Gabe (Black Panther's Winston Duke), who head off for a peaceful weekend at their Santa Cruz beach house with their children Jason (Evan Alex) and Zora (Shahadi Wright Joseph). After a strangely tense day at the beach with family friends Josh and Kitty Tyler (Tim Heidecker and The Handmaid's Tale's Elisabeth Moss, respectively), the family retires indoors for the evening, only to find themselves menaced by a quartet of mysterious, red-robed figures who appear in their driveway. They're not dropping by for a midnight snack; despite the family's best efforts, the interlopers gain entry to the house, only to be revealed as eerie, leering doppelgängers of the Wilsons. The family must try to survive the night while puzzling out the riddle of how their doubles came to be, and what they want.

Us promises to offer a different strain of cold-blooded terror from Get Out, which expertly folded commentary on race relations in America into its spine-tingling supernatural tale. It probably qualifies, however, as another of the (at least) four promised "social thrillers" which Peele assured us were on tap after Get Out's success, although the auteur may wish he could walk that statement back just a touch. In response to Us being branded a "psychological thriller" in the press with maddening consistency, Peele took to Twitter to set the record straight in the most succinct manner possible.

He'll get no argument from us, because it's worth reiterating that that trailer scared our pants off so hard we actually had a great deal of trouble getting them back on. (We eventually did.) As an interesting side note, we'd like to call attention to the fact that the possibility exists that Us and Get Out both take place (wait for it) in the same universe. During a recent sitdown with Collider's Vinnie Mancuso, Peele fielded the following question: "Over the years, we've seen people like James Wan [with the Conjuring series] and J.J. Abrams [with the Cloverfield series]... create their own little horror universe... have you ever thought about connecting [Us and Get Out] or keeping them all within the same universe?" His response: "Yes, I have thought of it." Asked if he cared to elaborate or save any details for the future, he simply replied "Save," sporting the most hardcore poker face we have ever seen.

At any rate, if you're a horror fan and do not already have tickets, you may want to get 'em while they're hot, because seats are filling up fast. Us opens in wide release this Friday, March 22.