Lionsgate’s fall thriller “Friend Request” is coming to Blu-ray and DVD this month. The thriller, which released on Digital HD back in December will get a retail release on January 9, 2018 (starting at $12 on Amazon). The thriller will also be available on-demand that same day.
Alycia Debnam-Carey (“Fear the Walking Dead,” Into the Storm) leads the film, which also stars William Moseley (The Chronicles of Narnia franchise, “The Royals”), Connor Paolo (“Revenge,” “Gossip Girl”), Brit Morgan (“Supergirl,” “Graceland”) and Liesl Ahlers (The Challenger Disaster). In the story, Laura (Alycia Debnam-Carey) is a popular college student who lives her college life to the fullest and gladly shares it with her 800 Facebook friends. But when she accepts a friend request from her mysterious classmate Marina (Liesl Ahlers), she unwittingly sets a terrible curse in motion. The dead girl’s impenetrable profile begins to drive Laura into isolation. It takes control of Laura’s virtual world and her real life as well. One after another, her closest friends die horrendous deaths, leaving Laura with only a few days to solve the enigma of this haunting curse to save the few friends she has left, as well as her own life.
The film had a limited opening in theaters, but still managed to gross over $2M during its debut while going against “Kingsman: The Golden Circle,” “The LEGO Ninjago Movie,” “Stronger,” and “Battle of the Sexes”. The film went on to make over $3.7M domestically, but despite opening across 2,500+ locations, fell short of its estimated $9.9M budget. The studio is probably hoping that DVD, Blu-Ray, and Digital Sales help make back some of that money.
In hindsight, releasing the film against such big-budget projects probably wasn’t the way to go, and late September turned out to be a terrible release window for thrillers in general. Sony’s thriller “Flatliners” opened the next weekend, and it too bombed at the box-office. On the other-hand, “Happy Death Day,” from Universal, opened just before Halloween and made over $26M on opening weekend, so studios should take note on when we want our thrillers.