evil dead rise

Source: Warner Bros

‘Evil Dead Rise’

A major horror franchise resurrects itself at the UK-Ireland box office this weekend, as Studiocanal’s Evil Dead Rise opens in 587 cinemas – the eighth-widest opening ever for an 18-rated film.

Written and directed by Lee Cronin, Evil Dead Rise follows two estranged sisters whose reunion is cut short by flesh-possessing demons thrusting them into a battle for survival.

The film stars Australian actresses Lily Sullivan, who starred in Amazon Studios series Picnic At Hanging Rock and features including Galore; and Alyssa Sutherland, from Amazon’s Vikings series.

Rise is the fifth film in the Evil Dead franchise, which began in 1981 with Raimi’s breakthrough feature The Evil Dead. Subsequent titles included 1987’s Evil Dead II (opened: £34,620; closed: £1.2m); 1993’s Army Of Darkness (£161,150; £559,298); and 2013 reboot Evil Dead, which started with £1.4m and ended on £3.4m, also through Studiocanal.

Raimi wrote and directed the first three films, and produced the 2013 reboot; he is an executive producer on Rise.

Horror films feature infrequently among the highest-grossing 18-rated films of all time in the UK and Ireland, which is surprising given the genre’s box office reliability at broader age brackets.

The highest-grossing 18-rated horror in the territory is 2001’s Hannibal  with £21.6m, although higher-grossing Gone Girl (£22.6m) has horror influences.

Its wide opening may see Evil Dead Rise play well as counter-programming to a box office dominated by animation fare such as The Super Mario Bros. Movie and adventures like Dungeons & Dragons: Honour Among Thieves.

Sony is starting Nick Johnson and Will Merrick’s thriller Missing in 430 cinemas. The film follows a young woman who tries to find her missing mother from home, using tools available to her online. A Wrinkle In Time actress Storm Reid leads the cast, which also includes Nia Long, Ken Leung and Megan Suri.

The film has already grossed £26.2m ($32.5m) in North America, where it opened at the end of January.

Oil futures

Vertigo Releasing is starting Daniel Goldhaber’s second feature How To Blow Up A Pipeline in 145 cinemas. Adapted from Andreas Malm’s book of the same name, the thriller follows a crew of environmental activists who plot to disrupt an oil pipeline. The film may benefit from its topicality in the UK and Ireland, with protests this week from environmental campaigners Just Stop Oil, and more expected over the weekend.

The film debuted at Toronto 2022 in the Platform section, going on to festivals in Hamburg, Chicago and Tromso. Goldhaber previously made 2018 Netflix horror Cam.

Universal is opening crime drama A Thousand And One by US filmmaker A.V. Rockwell in 117 cinemas. The film, which debuted at Sundance in January, follows a mother who kidnaps her son from foster care, with the duo setting out to reclaim their identity in New York City.

It is a debut feature for Rockwell, after an extensive shorts career that included Toronto 2018 entry Feathers, produced with the UK’s Pulse Films and acquired by Searchlight Pictures for distribution.


Source: Festival de Cannes


New Wave Films is opening Pacifiction, the 11th feature from Spanish filmmaker Albert Serra, in 12 cinemas. Following a premiere in Competition at Cannes 2022, Pacifiction has played almost 40 festivals including Munich, Jerusalem, Melbourne, Busan, New York and Tokyo; and received nine nominations at France’s Cesars, winning best cinematography for Artur Tort and best actor for Benoit Magimel.

Modern Films is starting Kristoffer Borgli’s comedy-horror Sick Of Myself, about a young woman who aims to emerge from the shadow of her boyfriend’s recent rise to fame. The film debuted in Un Certain Regard at Cannes last year, winning awards at festivals including Dublin and Valladolid.

Entertainment Film Distributors has French action-adventure The Three Musketeers: D’Artagnan starring Francois Civil, Vincent Cassel, Romain Duris, Pio Marmai and Eva Green; while Trinity Film has Ho Cheuk-Tin’s Hong Kong comedy Over My Dead Body on 17 screens.

Limited releases include Jon Sanders’ family drama A Clever Woman starring Josie Lawrence in six cinemas through Tull Stories; Lauren DeFilippo’s universal basic income documentary Free Money in one cinema through Dogwoof; Jamie Patterson’s Brighton-set comedy God’s Petting You in six cinemas through Screenbound; and Connor O’Hara’s UK feature Kindling through Signature Entertainment.

In Ireland only, Break Out Pictures is opening Sinead O’Shea’s documentary Pray For Our Sinners in 18 sites, with the Toronto 2022 title looking at Ireland’s recent history of brutality against women and children.

In event cinema, Seventh Art Distribution is bringing Vermeer: The Greatest Exhibition to over 300 UK cinemas, including 89 Odeon venues; with 60 booked so far for this weekend. The art film, which allows audiences to view the work of Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer, is already the highest-grossing title for producer Exhibition On Screen, having started in cinemas on Tuesday, April 18 and taken £170,547 to date.

National Theatre will play encores of C.P. Taylor’s play Good, directed by Dominic Cooke and starring David Tennant, after an event release yesterday (Thursday 20).

All The Anime is playing Japanese stop-motion title Junk Head in 40 cinemas on Monday, April 24, with 13 cinemas also booking encore screenings.

It will take a strong shell to dislodge Universal’s The Super Mario Bros. Movie from top spot; while other key holdovers include eOne’s Dungeons & Dragons and Lionsgate’s John Wick: Chapter 4.