'Alice' tops weekend overseas charts

'Green Zone' takes in roughly $9.7 million internationally

It's early spring, and Lewis Carroll thrives.

Director Tim Burton's "Alice in Wonderland" in 3D ruled the foreign theatrical universe over the weekend for an exceptionally strong second stanza -- down just 20% from its opening round -- with an estimated $80.6 million in boxoffice draw from 7,065 screens in 48 markets.

The film's No. 1 performance in all territories played, says Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures International, is "the biggest second weekend ever realized for any title (released) during the winter-spring corridor (January-April) in industry history."

"Alice" has "expanded the commercial possibilities of this (usually quiescent boxoffice) period in a whole new way," said David Kornblum, Disney's vp of international theatrical sales and distribution.

With 35% of the international market -- including France, China, Spain, Japan and Brazil -- yet to play, "Alice" has rolled up a total overseas gross of $224.8 million, of which nearly 70% ($157 million) originated in 3D venues. Its worldwide tally is $434.1 million.

Double-digit weekend grosses came out of the U.K. ($11 million from 533 sites for a market cume of $34.3 million) and Russia ($10.6 million from 576 screens, cume $32.2 million).

Italy weighed in with $9.3 million from 730 situations for a cume of $28.7 million while Germany produced $7.15 million from 555 locales for a cume of $16.5 million. "Alice's" weekend results in Australia, Mexico and Korea were also notably strong.

No. 2 on the weekend was "Shutter Island," which grossed an estimated $19.2 million from 43 markets, which were all, except five (Spain, Italy, Russia, Germany and Austria), handled by Paramount. Director Martin Scorsese's drama has rolled up a foreign boxoffice cume of $82 million, of which $52.3 million stems from Paramount's territories. Worldwide total is $190 million.

Weekend openings in 18 territories were led by "Shutter Island's" No. 2 debut in the U.K., where the Leonardo DiCaprio vehicle generated $3.4 million from 416 spots. A No. 1 Brazil debut came up with $1.1 million from 158 screens. In three rounds in France, "Shutter Island" has grossed $17.3 million.

Third was 20th Century Fox's "Avatar," which grossed $17.3 million from about 4,106 screens in 69 markets, pushing the film's record-breaking overseas cume to $1.913 billion after 13 rounds in release. Worldwide, director James Cameron's 3D spectacle has rolled up a cume of $2.644 billion. Biggest weekend market was Japan, where "Avatar" came away with $3.1 million from 450 screens for a market total of $155.8 million.

No. 4 was "Green Zone," which battled its way to an estimated $9.5 million in its overseas opening at 1,606 screens in 14 markets. Leading was the U.K., where Universal's Iraq War thriller directed by Paul Greengrass and starring Matt Damon premiered at No. 3 in the market with a $3.1 million take from 419 situations. In Australia, the No. 2 debut gross was $1.9 million from 245 locations.

Summit Entertainment's "Remember Me" opened in Australia via Hoyts day-and-date with its domestic bow, and finished ninth in the market with an estimated $467,080 elicited from 173 situations. The New Zealand result was $90,893 from 43 sites. The weekend overall saw the romantic drama starring Robert Pattinson playing nine markets, and drew an estimated $1.77 million from 530 locations.

No. 5 on the weekend was Fox's "Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief," which pushed its foreign gross total to $121.6 million thanks to a $7.1 million weekend at 4,703 screens in 59 territories. An Italy premiere generated $1.77 million from 323 locations.

Oscar-related films on the foreign circuit included best picture winner "The Hurt Locker," which finished via Roadshow at No.5 in Australia with $739,012 from 71 spots for a market cume of $2.76 million over four rounds. In Chile, director-coproducer Kathryn Bigelow's Iraq war drama jumped to No. 2 in the market in its fourth round, grossing $56,328 from 16 sites for a cume of $175,545.

Warner Bros.' "The Blind Side," which landed a best actress Oscar for Sandra Bullock, drew $1.8 million on the weekend from 376 screens in 16 markets for an overseas cume to date of $10.4 million. In Paris and its suburbs, "Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire" bumped up into the No. 7 spot in its second round via ARP.

Fox's "Crazy Heart," which won two Academy Awards, including a best actor nod to Jeff Bridges, drew $953,912 from 436 screens in 21 markets for an early international cume of $4 million.

Due to a solid Japan opening ($4.6 million from 441 sites), Warners' "Sherlock Holmes" generated a weekend total of $6.6 million from 1,888 locations in 31 markets. Overseas cume stands at $291 million. The same distributor's romantic comedy, "Valentine's Day," crossed the $100-million international gross mark ($101 million) thanks to a $3.2 million weekend at 2,389 screens in 56 markets.

Disney's "The Princess and the Frog" generated $2.6 million on the weekend from 2,182 locations in 30 markets. Overseas cume for the hand drawn animation stands at $153.4 million.

Foreign language titles handled by the majors overseas included Fox's "Pajaros de Papel" ("Paper Birds"), director Emilio Aragon's post-Civil War drama about a group of poor vaudevillians, which opened in Spain with an estimated $726,054 drawn from 230 spots.

Universal opened "Teufelskicker" ("Devil's Kickers"), director Granz Henma's family drama about the personal trials of a German soccer player, in German-speaking Europe (Germany, Austria, Belgium and Switzerland) for an estimated $1 million from 540 locations.

Fox's "My Name Is Khan," which has rolled up a foreign cume of $31.9 million, has become the biggest-grossing Bollywood title at the U.K. boxoffice, drawing more than $3.8 million in the territory.

In France, Gaumont's "La Rafle" ("The Roundup"), director Roselyn Bosch's historical drama about the French police's collaboration with the Nazis, opened No. 1 in the market, drawing $6.2 million from 602 locations. Diaphana Films' release of "Piece Montee," director Denys Granier-Deferre's romantic comedy costarring Danielle Darrieux, opened No. 4 with $1.5 million derived from 350 spots.

In addition, Lionsgate's "Daybreakers," $14.8 million; Paramount's "Up In The Air," $74.9 million; Sony's "Did You hear About the Morgans?," $50.9 million; Paramount's "Case 39," $13 million; Fox's "Hot Summer Days," $19.6 million; Paramount's "The Crazies," $4.6 million from the U.K. only; Lionsgate's "Dear John," $5.6 million; Sony's "Extraordinary Measures," $1.12 million; Showbox's "The Secret Reunion," estimated $35 million in Korea only; Paramount's "Celda 211," $18.7 million from Spain only; Lionsgate's "The Spy Next Door," $16 million; DreamWorks/Paramount's "The Lovely Bones," $44.6 million; and Sony's "Legion," $12.4 million.

Also, Sony's "Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs," $115.6 million; Fox's "Fantastic Mr. Fox," $23 million; Sony and other distributors' "Book of Eli," $36.2 million; The Weinstein Co.'s "Nine," $27.4 million; Focus Features/Universal's "A Serious Man," $20.8 million; Universal's "Cirque du Freak: the Vampire's Assistant," $15.9 million; and Focus Features' "Love Happens," $11.7 million.
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