'Benjamin Button' tops international b.o.

Awards contender brings in $32 mil from 48 markets

With 13 Oscar nominations and three BAFTA wins, Warner Bros.' "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" stepped out as the No. 1 film on the international circuit during the weekend, garnering an estimated $32 million from 5,197 screens in 48 markets.
 
The David Fincher-directed film hit its stride overseas with a No. 1 opening in Spain ($5 million in three days from 459 sites), a No. 1 debut in Paris (with a France total of $5.5 million over five days from 566 screens) and a No. 2 bow in Japan ($3.5 million in two days from 426 screens).
 
Notable was "Button's" No. 1 opening in the all-important U.K. territory, where it earned $3.2 million in three days from 425 spots.
 
"Button" is the best overseas grosser of this season's best-film Oscar prospects, collecting $74.8 million so far internationally. That's $26.5 million more than the combined overseas takes of "Revolutionary Road," "Frost/Nixon" and "Milk."
 
The weekend's No. 1 domestic title, NewLine/Warners' "He's Just Not That Into You," opened in Denmark, Israel and Puerto Rico and in the No. 2 spot in the U.K. ($2.8 million from 375 screens). Overall weekend take was $3.2 million from 460 locations or nearly $7,000 per screen.
 
Pathe's Oscar favorite and multiple BAFTA winner "Slumdog Millionaire" has extracted $24.5 million so far from the U.K. over three weekends. The Danny Boyle title grabbed the No. 3 weekend market spot with $2.3 million from 437 spots. In India, "Slumdog," through Fox, has rolled up a market cume of $5.2 million in three frames. It also ranked No. 4 in Paris for the weekend.
 
Disney Animation's "Bolt," up for an animated film Oscar, finished as the weekend's No. 2 title with $9.3 million from 3,006 screens in 33 markets for a cume of $111.4 million. Notable were No. 1 openings in Sweden, Norway and Denmark and a No. 2 bow in France ($3.9 million from 400 screens).
 
At No. 3 was Fox's release of United Artists' "Valkyrie," the World War II drama starring Tom Cruise that had been No. 1 overseas the previous two frames. The latest stanza at 3,394 screens in 30 markets produced $8.7 million, pushing the film's overseas cume to $56.7 million.
 
DreamWorks/Paramount's "Revolutionary Road" tallied $6 million from 2,699 screens in 47 markets, finishing at No. 4 for the weekend. The international gross for the Leonardo DiCaprio-Kate Winslet film is $36.6 million.
 
A close No. 5 was Fox's comedy "Bride Wars," showing durability on the international circuit with a $5.9 million weekend from 2,536 screens in 43 markets, good for a cume of $32 million. Sony's "Seven Pounds" opened in six territories and grabbed $5.2 million overall on the weekend from 2,550 sites in 43 markets, pushing its overseas cume to $79.4 million.
 
Buoyed by five debuts, including a $1.3 million Russia bow on 273 screens, Sony's "Underworld: Rise of the Lycans" grossed $5.3 million from 1,471 screens in 42 markets for an overall cume of $17 million. Warners' "Yes Man," starring Jim Carrey, tacked on $5.2 million from about 2,800 screens in 56 markets. Its overseas cume stands at $107.5 million.
 
Summit International's "Twilight" played 2,477 theaters in 51 markets and grossed $5.07 million -- pushing the teen vampire hit's overseas cume to a solid $172 million.
 
The top local-language title in France by far was Pathe's "LOL," a feminist mother/teen daughter saga starring Sophie Marceau, which debuted at No. 2 in the market with a solid $3.8 million from 396 screens. Another France opening was Universal's "Role Models," with $196,000 from 100 sites. Overall for the weekend, the comedy produced $1.7 million from 853 screens in 14 markets for a cume of $17.5 million.



Disney's "Beverly Hills Chihuahua" chugged along overseas with a $3.7 million weekend from 1,144 screens in 12 markets for a cume of $38.7 million. The same distributor's "Bedtime Stories" garnered $2.1 million from 1,660 screens in 36 territories for a cume of $83.4 million.
 
"Mamma Mia!" continued to pile on the foreign grosses as the weekend brought $2.2 million from 336 Japan sites, down just 35% from its opening frame, pushing the market cume past the 1 billion yen ($11.3 million) mark in 10 days. The Universal musical has logged an overseas cume of $440.5 million, more than three times its domestic gross.
 
Another boxoffice stalwart concluding its international run in Japan is MGM/Sony's "Quantum of Solace," which tallied $1.3 million in its third weekend in the territory from 346 spots. Its overseas total is $401.6 million, $30.5 million shy of the overseas boxoffice record for a James Bond title set by 2006's "Casino Royale."
 
Topping the Japan market for a second consecutive weekend was Toho's "20-seiki shonen: Dai 2 sho" (20th Century Boys: Chapter 2 The Last Hope). The manga-based action title garnered $3.8 million from 374 sites for a market cume of $14.6 million.
 
The Angelina Jolie-starring "Changeling" pushed its offshore cume to $54.9 million thanks to a $2.3 million weekend from 1,264 screens in 39 markets. Focus Features/Universal's "Milk," starring Sean Penn, pushed its overseas cume to $6.7 million after a $953,354 million weekend playing 441 sites in 14 territories.
 
Warners' "Gran Torino" continued solidly in Australia (where it ranked No. 3) and New Zealand as it grossed $1.1 million from 241 screens. Its foreign-gross total stands at $5 million from both markets. France is due up Feb. 25, followed by the U.K. two days later.
 
Day-and-date with its No. 3 domestic bow, Universal's "Coraline," Henry Selick's stop-motion, 3-D-animated family fantasy, opened at No. 1 in Mexico ($1.2 million from 402 screens, including 60 3-D situations), the biggest 3-D opening in the market. Another $84,000 was grossed from 16 strictly 3-D situations in Colombia and Chile.
 
Simultaneous to its No. 4 domestic premiere, Sony opened MGM's "The Pink Panther 2" in Malaysia, Central America and Chile for $380,000 from a combined 138 screens. Fox's "Australia" pulled in $2.1 million from 2,150 screens in 21 markets for a cume of $142 million over 11 frames.
 
Miramax/Disney's "Doubt," with its five Oscar nominations, has accumulated $7.2 million overseas to date thanks to a $2.6 million weekend from 897 screens in 24 markets, with Italy and Spain providing most of the boxoffice firepower.
 
"Frost/Nixon" logged $1.2 million for the weekend, playing 727 locations in 20 markets, good for an international total of $5 million. The Universal release bowed in 11 markets, including Spain, where it tallied $185,000 from 87 screens.
 
Other international cumes: Focus Features' " In Bruges" (which won a best screenplay BAFTA award), $25.1 million; Fox's "The Day the Earth Stood Still," $151 million; DreamWorks Animation/Paramount's "Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa," $393.6 million; New Line's "Appaloosa," $7.1 million; Fox's "Marley & Me," $20.7 million; Universal's "The Tale of Despereaux," $24.1 million; DreamWorks/Paramount's "Hotel for Dogs," $9.7 million; New Line's "Four Christmases," $42.6 million; Mandate International's "Saw V," $54.2 million; New Line's "Inkheart," $26 million; Sony's "The Spirit," $17 million; New Line's "Pride and Glory," $13.3 million; Focus Features' "Burn After Reading," $94.3 million; and Universal's "The Unborn," $6.3 million.
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