Low-budget horror movie Paranormal Activity sold out midnight showings and created a buzz as "the scariest movie of the decade." Based on one million fans' votes, "demanding" to expand the release to more theatres, Paramount will "go wide," to more cities across the US.
Critically acclaimed and a fan favorite, the story follows a young couple (newcomers Katie Featherstone and Micah Sloat), who move into a typical suburban house, but grow increasingly anxious about a haunting during the middle of the night, so they install surveillance cameras.
The film was shot with a hand-held video camera by the director Oren Peli, a native of Israel, in his Los Angeles home over one week for a total o $15,000. In just two weeks, it earned an estimated $933,080 at the box office.
The film premiered at Screamfest in 2007 and was well-received at the Slamdance Film Festival 2009, but it almost never made it to the big screen. Previously DreamWorks planned a DVD-only release and a bigger budget version, but the deal fell through and Paramount took a chance with a new ending and 10-minute edit.
The studio also used the Internet to market to the audience with Facebook and Twitter to gather interest and build momentum on the word-of-mouth, which paid off.