‘The Blackening’ Sequel in The Works From Dewayne Perkins and Tracy Oliver

'The Blackening' Sequel

MRC and Lionsgate are in discussions to develop ‘The Blackening’ sequel thanks to the successful horror-comedy original from Dewayne Perkins and Tracy Oliver. The microbudget production, made for just $5 million, grossed over $18 million at the box office.

Following its premiere at TIFF Midnight Madness in 2022, the film, directed by Tim Story, gained acclaim for its unique take on horror tropes. The plot revolves around college friends hunted during Juneteenth weekend, challenging the traditional trope of the Black character dying first in horror movies.

The success of “The Blackening” has empowered the creators, with Tracy Oliver expressing the freedom to pursue projects without waiting for a studio’s approval. The film’s $3 million production budget proved that funding is more accessible, particularly for Black creators.

While the sequel’s plot remains undisclosed, Dewayne Perkins envisions “The Blackening” as a franchise, similar to “Scary Movie,” featuring the same group with the addition of new characters. Perkins emphasized the positive impact of introducing fresh blood to the dynamic.

The original film’s cast includes Antoinette Robertson, Sinqua Walls, Grace Byers, X Mayo, Melvin Gregg, Jermaine Fowler, Yvonne Orji, and Jay Pharoah. Producers include Marcei A. Brown, Jason Clark, E. Brian Dobbins, Tracy Oliver, Tim Story, and Sharla Sumpter Bridgett.

“The Blackening” made its debut at the 2022 Toronto International Film Festival on September 16, 2022. Lionsgate swiftly acquired distribution rights for just under $20 million following its premiere. The film was theatrically released in the United States on June 16, 2023, coinciding with Juneteenth, and in the United Kingdom on August 25, 2023, distributed by Universal Pictures.

Despite its success, the film faced legal challenges from Zahara Ariel and Jaryah Bobo, who alleged infringement on their screenplay “Southern Education” and the card game “Black Card Revoked.” Their attempt to delay the film’s release was rejected by California judge Dale S. Fischer, who stated that the plaintiffs provided insufficient details about their claims.

“The Blackening” continued its journey to home media, releasing on digital download on July 7, 2023, and on Ultra HD Blu-ray, Blu-ray, and DVD on August 22, 2023.

In terms of box office performance, the film was released alongside “Elemental” and “The Flash” in the United States and Canada. Projections estimated a $7–8 million opening weekend from 1,775 theaters. The film surpassed expectations by earning $2.5 million on its first day, including $900,000 from Thursday night previews. The opening weekend saw a total of $6 million, securing the sixth position at the box office. In the second weekend, the film earned $3 million, finishing seventh.

Critical reception has been positive, with 86% of 131 critics on Rotten Tomatoes giving favorable reviews. The average rating stands at 7/10, with the consensus praising the film as a thoughtful satire that critiques horror tropes and racial stereotypes. Metacritic awarded the film a score of 69 out of 100, indicating generally favorable reviews. CinemaScore audiences graded it as “B+”, and 81% of filmgoers, according to PostTrak, gave it a positive score, with 64% expressing a definite recommendation for the film. “The Blackening” continues to leave a significant impact, not only at the box office but also in its critical acclaim and audience reception.

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