Ethan Hawke’s Big Box Office Weekend

Can you imagine a world where for one day out of the year, no act is deemed illegal? Good, neither can we. I think it’s safe to say writer/director of The Purge, James DeMonaco, has an unmatched imagination. His vision reeled in just over $36 million this weekend.The_Purge_posterThe Purge depicts a family residing in a gated community during a period of time where flagrant crime and uncontrolled prison overcrowding have inspired the United States Government to implement a unique solution to restore peace and a sense of tranquility. The solution? Each year, for a consecutive 12-hour period, any and all crime becomes permissible as police put their jobs on hold, and hospitals close their doors. The period has been coined the Purge, and surprisingly, the annual event leads to a drastic reduction in crime rate and record-low unemployment levels.Released by Universal Pictures, the film – starring Ethan Hawke and Lena Headey – was granted a mere $3 million budget, and is executive produced by Michael Bay and Bradley Fuller among others. "Never did we expect it to open at this level,'' said Nikki Rocco, head of distribution for Universal. "This result could not have been forecasted by anybody.'' ThePurgeThe Purge displaced last year's similarly micro-budgeted The Devil Inside ($33.7 million) as record holder for largest opening of an R-rated horror movie that wasn't a remake, a sequel or an adaptation. "This is exactly the kind of film that stumps all the analysts,'' said Paul Dergarabedian, an analyst for box-office tracker "It proves that R-rated horror films, no matter the budget, always have a place with audiences.''The Purge is currently screening in 2,536 theaters. Check out the trailer below!