- The Exorcist: Believer changed its release date to avoid competing with Taylor Swift's concert film and to maximize its box office potential, confirms producer Jason Blum.
- Other movies also shifted their release dates due to Swift's popularity and the predicted success of her concert film.
- Despite the date change, The Exorcist: Believer still has the opportunity to break box office records and generate buzz with its talented cast and strong premise.
The Exorcist: Believer's producer, Jason Blum, addresses its release date change, which was made to avoid coinciding with the release of Taylor Swift's upcoming concert film. After initially being slated to release on October 13, The Exorcist: Believer will now premiere a week earlier on October 6. It marks the sixth entry in the Exorcist franchise and is a direct sequel to the original 1973 film. In the movie, the parents of two possessed girls seek help from Chris MacNeil (Ellen Burstyn), the mother of The Exorcist's original subject, Regan (Linda Blair).
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Blum opened up about The Exorcist: Believer's abrupt release date change. In August, Swift surprised fans by revealing that Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour was coming to theaters on October 13. Though Blum might've hoped to see if there would be double feature hype between his movie and Swift's, like Barbie and Oppenheimer, he decided to abandon the date. Check out his statement below:
We had this amazing Friday the 13th in October, which is the single best day to release a scary movie. Obviously, we moved off that and we bowed our head to Taylor Swift. It was too risky to see if 'Exorswift' was going to take or not. The one thing that scares me to death is Taylor Swift!
Will The Exorcist: Believer's Date Change Impact Its Box Office Performance?
The Exorcist: Believer wasn't the only movie to bow to Swift and her fan power. What Happens Later and Dumb Money, among others, also switched release dates after the singer's surprise announcement. Swift's popularity has been skyrocketing recently, with her Eras Tour proving big enough to boost the whole U.S. economy. Hence, it's predicted that her concert film could garner at least $100 million at the box office on opening weekend. It seems likely there is going to be little room at the box office for anyone else on the weekend of October 13.
While October 13 was a perfect date for The Exorcist: Believer, its box office performance likely would've been impacted by trying to compete with Swift. Luckily, moving up only a week doesn't do much to change its prospects. If it proves a worthy sequel, The Exorcist: Believer could still break a box office record in the franchise. The franchise has faced sporadic movie releases, and this is why it seems attainable for The Exorcist: Believer to nab the biggest opening weekend since the original film; it's the first installment in over ten years, and comes with some buzzworthy talent attached.
Believer is taking a risk by serving as a direct sequel to The Exorcist, an acclaimed movie in its own right. At the same time, the risk also comes with opportunities for improvement and to outdo the horror and shock that The Exorcist initially went down in history for inducing. Early reactions to The Exorcist: Believer appears to confirm its deeply chilling premise. With strong buzz and Chris MacNeil's return, anticipation for the film is very high. Just because The Exorcist: Believer bowed to Swift when it came to release dates doesn't mean it has to give up its box office ambitions.
Source: Entertainment Weekly