'Borat' beats the 'Devil' globally

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Who says satirical comedy doesn't travel well? The Sacha Baron Cohen vehicle "Borat" topped the international boxoffice this weekend with an estimated $17.7 million from 993 screens in 17 markets, thus keeping pace with its No. 1 domestic start.

As a result, "Borat," estimated to have a relatively modest production cost, has grossed $44.1 million worldwide in its opening weekend.

The overseas numbers were particularly strong for the 20th Century Fox International release given its comparatively limited off-shore breakout. Per-screen average across the initial overseas run of the British comic's fake documentary/road movie was a mighty $17,800.

"Borat" cleaned up in the U.K., finishing No. 1 in this key market with an estimated $11.5 million from 426 situations for a per-screen average of $27,000. It topped the boxoffice charts in Denmark and Finland, and finished No. 2 in Germany with an estimated $2.6 million from 234 sites for an $11,000 per-screen average.

In Sweden, "Borat's" estimated tally was $668,000 from just 39 locales for a per-screen average of $17,000. In Holland, where it also finished No. 1, the film drew an estimated $649,000 from 54 situations for a per-screen average of $12,000.

Finishing second on the weekend was Fox's "The Devil Wears Prada," garnering an estimated $11 million from 6,600 screens in 48 markets, lifting its international gross total to $151.2 million (about $27 million above its domestic cume). The behind-the-scenes look at a high fashion magazine had spent four straight weekends at the top of the international charts.

"Prada" had solid second weekends in Korea (an estimated $1.3 million from 222 screens for a market cume of $5.2 million) and in Belgium ($731,000, up 14% from the weekend before, at 60 screens for a territory total of $1.9 million). In Germany, the Meryl Streep-Anne Hathaway starrer slinked to an estimated $2.3 million from 608 sites in its fourth weekend for a market total of $17.5 million. In Italy, the take was $1.4 million from 434 screens for a cume of $14.9 million.

Grabbing the No. 3 spot this weekend is Warner Bros. International's release of director Shusuke Kaneko's "Desu noto 2" (Death Note: The Last Name). The local-language horror pic produced by WB with two Japanese partners (including commercial broadcaster NTV) bowed in Japan to stunning results, grabbing the top spot in the market with an estimated $10.3 million (including sneak previews) from 362 spots, for a humongous per-screen average of $28,500.

At No. 4 was Sony Pictures Releasing International's "Open Season," which grossed an estimated $8.2 million from 3,195 screens in 41 markets, raising its international total to date to $52.4 million. The animation title finished No. 6 in the U.K. and Mexico, opened No. 2 in Portugal and wound up No. 3 in France (an estimated $2.7 million from 623 screens, a mere 1% drop from its second weekend for a market cume of $9 million).

Finishing in the fifth slot this weekend is WBI's "The Departed," which gunned down an estimated $7.3 million from 30 markets, raising its international cume to $49.3 million. The Martin Scorsese crime drama bowed No. 1 in Israel, continued in the top spot in Spain ($1.9 million from 371 screens) and jumped 8% from last weekend in Italy with $2.2 million from 425 screens. Its cume in the U.K. market stands at $21 million, and the worldwide cume stands at $151.6 million.

"Seven Dwarfs 2," the German-produced fairy tale parody, continued to take advantage of various European school holidays and performed like gangbusters in Germany, Austria, German-speaking Switzerland and Luxembourg. The weekend tally was an estimated $6.5 million from 975 screens for a total of $19.2 million.

"Dwarfs" finished No. 1 in Germany with an estimated $5.3 million from 765 screens for an 11-day total of $15.3 million. It also finished first in Austria with $860,000 from 100 locations for a market cume of $2.8 million.

Lionsgate's grisly horror sequel "Saw III" played the U.K., Australia (where it finished No. 1), Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Panama (the last four territories courtesy of Buena Vista International). The second weekend estimate is $5.5 million, with the U.K. providing an estimated $2.5 million. Best of the Latin lot was Brazil with an estimated $1.2 million from 202 screens.

WBI's "The Prestige" garnered a semi-magical estimate of $3.3 million from 11 markets for an international total of $6.3 million. Clint Eastwood's "Flags of Our Fathers," also from WBI, saluted an estimated $3.24 million from eight territories, lifting its overseas total to date to $8.7 million.

United International Pictures' "Flushed Away," an animation title about a rat who gets flushed down a London toilet, bowed in five territories for an estimated $2.8 million from 493 screens. Best of the markets was Russia, where the pic flushed out an estimated $2.1 million from 334 locations.

Buena Vista International's "The Guardian," the Coast Guard rescue drama with Kevin Costner and Ashton Kutcher, logged an estimated $2.7 million this weekend from 2,239 screens in 25 territories, raising its overseas total to $20.1 million. UIP's "Barnyard" pulled an estimated $2.6 million from 1,872 sites in 23 territories, pushing its international cume to $21.4 million.

Paramount/UIP's "World Trade Center" hoisted its overseas gross total to $82 million thanks to an estimated $2.4 million weekend playing 1,674 screens in 56 markets. DreamWorks Animation's "Over the Hedge" continued to plug away with an estimated $2 million weekend at 702 screens in 61 territories, lifting its overseas cume to a most respectable $174.6 million.

Other overseas cume updates: Summit Ent./Universal's "Step Up" (based on Universal's five territories), $11.6 million; Fox's "A Good Year," $2.3 million; Universal's "Children of Men," $18 million; WBI's "Pan's Labyrinth," $10.2 million; Universal's "You, Me and Dupree," $48.5 million; Paramount/UIP's "An Inconvenient Truth," $10.7 million; and UIP's "Jackass Number Two," $2.7 million.
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