Despite low budgets, each film has made more than $80 million in the U.S.
By Kevin P. Sullivan, with additional reporting by Eric Ditzian
After the third installment made just under $108 million in the U.S. alone, few could really doubt that a "Paranormal Activity 4" would be here just in time for Halloween 2012. The found-footage series has become Paramount's yearly sure thing, since the low-budget thrillers have each earned more than $80 million domestically.
"Paranormal Activity 3" played a key role in securing Paramount's spot as the top-earning studio of 2011, so when the studio casually unveiled plans for the next installment during their victory-lap press release, it almost went unnoticed.
The release reads: "In 2012, Paramount's release slate highlights include 'World War Z,' a zombie thriller starring Brad Pitt and directed by Marc Forster, 'G.I. Joe: Retaliation,' the next installment in the global franchise starring Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson and Channing Tatum, a new chapter in the 'Paranormal Activity' franchise, and 'The Dictator,' starring Sacha Baron Cohen and directed by Larry Charles, the team behind 'Borat.'"
"Paranormal 3," directed by Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, took the series into the past, looking at what could be considered the series' origins story. While the story explained why the demon had such a liking for the sisters, Katie and Kristi, it left many of the questions from the modern-day "Paranormal 2" unanswered.
As for whether Joost and Schulman would return for a second round of directing, the team told MTV News they were open to it. "I had a blast. I'd do it again," Schulman said.
Joost joked that they'd take the series even further into the past. "We have some ideas. It's going to be just drawings — calligraphy and watercolors. And set in the 1800s."
Are you going to see "Paranormal Activity 4" this year? Let us know in the comments!
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