Jordan Peele’s “Nope” Earns $44M in Opening Weekend

The UFO thriller film ranks as one of the best-performing box office movies during the COVID-19 pandemic

Keke Palmer (left) and Daniel Kaluuya (right) as heirs of the fictional Black-owned ranch that trains horses for movies in Jordan Peele’s “Nope” (2022). Photo courtesy of Universal Studios.

Filmmaker Jordan Peele — widely popular as one-half of Comedy Central’s “Key & Peele” duo — has debuted yet another successful film. The UFO thriller “Nope” has recorded $44 million in box office sales during its first week of opening in 3,785 U.S. and Canadian theaters, USA Today reports. Playing on it’s director’s fame as an actor turned horror film director, a version of the movie’s trailer starts of light, groovy, and funny — like one big set-up for a hilarious punch line. Except, you don’t get the punch line. Midway, the trailer turns ominous: this clearly is a thriller movie — with just enough jokes inserted here and there.

“Nope” tells the story of the brother and sister heirs of a Black-owned ranch that trains horses for movies. As they struggle to keep the ranch afloat, they notice that their horses are disappearing or are reacting to an unseen presence. Now, they have to get the UFO on tape to prove its existence to the world. The movie stars Daniel Kaluuya — who also starred in Peele’s directorial debut film “Get Out” — as OJ Haywood. Joining him are Keke Palmer as Emerald Haywood, and Steven Yeun as Ricky “Jupe” Park.

“It’s a great number,” Jim Orr, Universal Picture’s president of domestic distribution, told USA Today. “It’s amazing how broadly it’s playing too.” The film started with a revenue of $6.4 million last Thursday, and it rose to $19.3 million by the close last Friday. The movie was shot in IMAX and you will have the option to see “Nope” at the nearest IMAX theater.

“It’s incredibly gratifying to see a visionary like Jordan Peele, who represents a new generation of filmmakers, use our technology in pioneering ways and create an experience meant to be seen in IMAX,” IMAX CEO Rich Gelfond said.

Poster for Jordan Peele’s UFO thriller film “Nope.” Photo courtesy of Universal Studios.

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