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SYFY WIRE Box Office

Shyamalan's 'Knock at the Cabin' is the No. 1 movie at the box office, officially knocking off 'Avatar'

Knock, knock. Who's there? A new No. 1 movie taking Avatar's spot, that's who.

By Josh Weiss
Knock at the Cabin UNIVERSAL PRESS

After nearly two months of financial supremacy, James Cameron's Avatar: The Way of Water has finally been deposed at the domestic box office by M. Night Shyamalan's Knock at the Cabin.

The apocalyptic mystery-thriller racked up $14.2 million in North America, falling just shy of early projections, which estimated that the film would debut to $15 - $17 million. This is the director's seventh effort to open at No. 1 and the biggest opening for an R-rated film in 2023 so far.  It is expected to close out opening weekend with a worldwide haul of $21.2 million.

Shyamalan gleefully reacted to the news on Twitter Sunday, writing: "Thank you to all who made Knock at the Cabin the number one film this weekend! I am pinching myself that this is the seventh time this has happened to me. This is the fourth in a row with Universal Pictures. Much love to James Cameron, he’s a hero to me. Glad to be in theaters with you."

RELATED: 'Knock at the Cabin' reviews hail Shyamalan's latest and Bautista's finest performance to date

"Shyamalan has made a career out of thrilling audiences and delivering twist endings that leave you speechless and this makes him notable among directors — one whose name alone is a draw for moviegoers," Paul Dergarabedian, Senior Media Analyst at Comscore, tells SYFY WIRE. "Despite some uneven output over the years, there is no question that M. Night Shyamalan is truly committed to the big screen experience and swings for the cinematic fences every time out of the gate."

Based on Paul Tremblay's 2018 novel, The Cabin at the End of the World, the movie centers around a family of three — Andrew (Ben Aldridge), Eric (Jonathan Groff), and their 8-year-old Wen (newcomer Kristen Cui) — who are unexpectedly taken hostage by a strange group of fanatics during a vacation in the woods. These zealots, who are led by the imposing Leonard (Guardians of the Galaxy's Dave Bautista) claim that if the family does not willingly choose to sacrifice one of their own, the entire world will end.

Rupert Grint (Shyanmalan's Apple TV+ series Servant), Nikki Amuka-Bird (Old), and Abby Quinn (Mad About You) round out the cast as Leonard's followers: Redmond, Sabrina, and Adriane. Shyamalan shares screenplay credit with Steve Desmond and Michael Sherman.

The Way of Water actually slid into third place (behind Knock and 80 for Brady) with an additional $10.8 million, boosting its overall domestic haul to $636.4 million. On the global stage, the long-awaited sequel has made $2.1 billion, making it the fourth-highest grossing movie in history after Avatar, Avengers: Endgame, and Titanic.

Despite recently becoming available on VOD, Puss in Boots: The Last Wish continues to swashbuckle in North America with an extra $7.9 million in its seventh weekend. To date, the critically-acclaimed DreamWorks sequel has made more than $150 million domestically and a little over $368 million worldwide. Now in its fifth week, M3GAN fell into seventh place with $3.8 million, bringing its U.S. cache to $87.5 million (globally, it has crawled on all fours past $158 million).

Knock at the Cabin is now playing in theaters everywhere. Click here to purchase tickets.

Looking for more horror to make your spine tingle and blood curdle? You can currently catch Jordan Peele's NOPE on Peacock. Plus, don't miss SYFY's hit horror series Chucky, which was just picked up for a third season.