by KYW’s Bill Wine —
The Last Exorcism may be the first in a new franchise.
The demonic-possession horror thriller, The Last Exorcism (above), was the surprise winner of the box office crown in its opening weekend, earning just over $21 million.
Another new title, Takers — a cops-and-robbers heist thriller with Idris Elba, Paul Walker, and Matt Dillon — was an equally surprising second with $21 million in its debut.
Their one-two punch dropped last weekend’s leader — Sylvester Stallone’s action thriller, The Expendables — to third, taking in $9 million in its third weekend of release.
Overall, it was a typically slow late-August weekend at the nation’s multiplexes, but not as slow as expected, thanks to the takings of Takers and The Last Exorcism.