Laurie Strode is back, and its like she never left. Over the weekend, the new Halloween sequel, starring Jamie Lee Curtis—once again playing the role that made her an iconic scream queen—dominated the box office with $77.5 million in ticket sales. Directed by David Gordon Green, the film also notched a few (admittedly hyper-specific) records in the process—including the best horror opening for a film with a female lead and the biggest debut for a film with a female lead over 55 years old. It was also the second-best start for an R-rated horror film (trailing behind last years It reboot), and the second-highest opening in October history—trailing just a few million behind this months Venom.
Curtis celebrated the win by listing out the films achievements in a boastful tweet with the hashtag “#womengetthingsdone.” She also shared a photo in which she posed with co-stars Judy Greer and Andi Matichak.
The movie is also doing big business overseas, pulling in $14.3 million in 23 markets, with 46 more markets still to go. The Halloween reboot marks another major success for Blumhouse and producer Jason Blum (whos still winning back female horror fans after those dumb remarks about a supposed lack of women genre directors). Like all Blumhouse productions, the Halloween reboot was made on a slim budget—$10 million, to be exact—making the box-office numbers more impressive by comparison. The original 1978 Michael Myers slasher, directed by John Carpenter, was made for around $300,000 and went on to ultimately gross $60 million worldwide. Since then, there have been 10 sequels, including this newest follow-up, which disregards most of the past films and instead hearkens back to the plot points of the original movie. The latest iteration picks up with a deeply paranoid Laurie, who is still traumatized by the memory of Myers, and also stars Greer as Karen, Lauries daughter, and Matichak as Allyson, her granddaughter.
Halloweens smashing box office might also be due to the warm reviews its received, building buzz over the last few months. In her review, Vanity Fairs Joanna Robinson praised the film for amplifying the original Halloweens “subtle commentary on what happens when rational female fears are dismissed.” The new iteration goes deeper on that premise, aided by Curtiss performance as a newly vigilant Laurie.
Get Vanity Fairs HWD NewsletterSign up for essential industry and award news from Hollywood.Full ScreenPhotos:10 Enchanting Movies and TV Shows About Witches
I Married a Witch
This overlooked 1942 gem stars Veronica Lake, she of the perfect side part, as a colonial Salem-era witch who gets burned at the stake, then reawakened hundreds of years later, determined to get revenge on a descendant of the family who tried to kill her. I Married a Witch is more rom-com than horror, a love story with a healthy serving of cauldrons and broomsticks. Its easy to fall under its spell. (On Filmstruck.)Photo: From Everett Collection.
Double, Double, Toil and Trouble
If youre of a certain age and looking for a deep-cut nostalgia trip, Hulu has you covered with a Mary Kate and Ashley joint—one thats well worth revisiting if youre both a 90s kid and a fan of Cloris Leachman, who played the evil witch grandmother at the films center. As with most old media, some parts of the film have aged better than others—but the Olsen magic remains eternal. (On Hulu.)Photo: From Everett Collection.
The Blair Witch Project (1999)
Ah, yes, the classic cautionary tale about what happens when three college students venture into the woods to investigate local legends. Although this might not count as a witch movie in the typical sense, it would feel wrong to leave Blair Witch out of our selections—especially given its terrifying ending, which makes all the run-up worth it. (On Hulu.)Photo: From ©Artisan Entertainment/Everett Collection.
One of the many network enchantments cast by Aaron Spelling is Charmed, a San Francisco-set drama about three sisters—originally played by Shannon Doherty, Alyssa Milano, and Holly Marie Combs—whose combined abilities make them the most powerful witches of all time. Before all you kids out there tuck into the CWs woke reboot, take a trip back to 1998 to see where it all began. (On Netflix.)Photo: From ©Viacom/Everett Collection.
Sabrina: The Teenage Witch
Netflix might have its own Sabrina adaptation on the way, but for now, Melissa Joan Hart still reigns supreme. Besides, even with the new Sabrina coming, this one will always have a place in our hearts; did you hear that the cat wont even talk in the new version? (On Hulu.)Photo: ©Viacom/Courtesy Everett Collection
In this crunchy New England fall leaf of a film, Nicole Kidman and Sandra Bullock play a pair of witchy sisters battling against a family curse that dooms any man they fall in love with to an early death. There are perfect autumnal Massachusetts vibes, plus Stockard Channing and Dianne Wiest as a pair of aunties who love to cackle over midnight margaritas. (On HBOGo.)Photo: From Everett Collection.
If youve found yourself with enough money to pony up for a couple other rentals, here are some of our favorites that, alas, cannot be streamed for free: Kikis Delivery Service, The Craft, Eves Bayou, The Wizard of Oz, Hocus Pocus, and Bell Book and Candle.Photo: Clockwise from right; From Everett Collection, from Everett Collection, from ©Buena Vista/Everett Collection.PreviousNext
Yohana DestaYohana Desta is a Hollywood writer for VanityFair.com.