'Harry Potter' repeats at overseas boxoffice

Total take brings Warners over $1 billion for the year

After its record-breaking worldwide opening the previous frame, "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" gave up considerable boxoffice altitude on the foreign circuit during the weekend but still remained a dominant No. 1 with $82.5 million lured from 15,850 screens in 64 territories.

Although the weekend take dropped 65% from its smashing $236 million overseas debut, the "Prince" frame catapulted Warner Bros. past the $1 billion international gross mark for 2009, the ninth consecutive year the studio has surpassed that benchmark.

Fox was the first studio this year to top $1 billion internationally, doing so early this month. Paramount passed the benchmark a week and a half ago, and Sony hopes to do so by early next month.

"Prince's" overseas cume is $404 million and its global boxoffice total is $625.2 million, making the sixth outing in the multibillion-dollar Warners franchise the 39th biggest-grossing title in history after just 12 days of release.

The latest "Potter" opened in Poland ($2 million from 196 screens) and Argentina ($1.9 million from 190 sites), but the big numbers continue to be drawn from the major territories. The top three are Germany, with $9 million from 903 screens for a cume of $40.2 million; France, with $8.7 million from 980 spots for a $33.6 million cume; and the U.K., with $8.5 million from 586 locations for a cume of $53.6 million.

"G-Force," the weekend's No. 1 film in the U.S. and Canada, dipped its toes in international waters via Disney in Chile. The first four days at 42 locations produced an estimated $386,000, or about $9,000 per screen, enough for a No. 3 market ranking. The 3D family animation/live action outing from producer Jerry Bruckheimer opens in 14 markets this weekend including Mexico and the U.K.

Finishing a solid No. 2 during the weekend was Fox's "Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs," which collected $40.4 million from 10,518 situations in 102 markets. The threequel remains 2009's top grosser internationally with an overseas cume of $505.2 million (vs. $171.3 million domestic). Worldwide it currently ranks as the 33d biggest film hit ever.

No. 3 was Warners' sleeper hit "The Hangover," which continues to show unusual overseas traction for a comedy. Propelled by a $4.2 million, No. 3 Germany opening (including previews) at 423 screens, "Hangover" drew $10.4 million from a total of 2,260 sites in 37 territories. Its foreign cume stands at $98.8 million.

Premiering in 13 markets, "Public Enemies" drew $10 million from 2,445 locations in 35 territories, finishing No. 4 overall and lifting its overseas cume to $37 million. The best new market for the Johnny Depp crime drama was Russia, where the No. 2 tally was $2.4 million from 329 spots. It was the biggest market opening for a title from director Michael Mann, distributor Universal said.

Disney's "The Proposal" opened at No. 2 in the U.K. with an estimated $5.3 million derived from 428 screens. The weekend overall for the comedy with Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds drew $8.2 million from 1,894 screens in 24 markets, enough to qualify for the No. 5 spot. 'The Proposal's" cume stands at $61.1 million.

DreamWorks/Paramount's "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen" grossed $6.2 million from 4,541 spots in 57 territories. The sequel's foreign cume so far is at $412.4 million, compared with the $389 million grossed by the 2007 original during its entire foreign run.

A listless France debut ($903,547 from 214 screens, ranking No. 8) held the weekend tally for "Bruno" to an estimated $6.6 million from 2,700 situations in 33 markets, bringing the overseas cume for the Sacha Baron Cohen comedy -- from co-distributors Universal, Sony and Mandate International -- to $57.6 million. Worldwide, "Bruno" has grossed $114.2 million to date.

Sony's "The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3," co-starring Denzel Washington and John Travolta, beat the latest Harry Potter in Spain, finishing No. 1 with $2.2 million from 386 screens. Overall, the weekend provided $2.9 million from 577 sites in 14 markets for an overseas cume of $9.2 million.

Also in France, the top local-language title was "Une semaine dur deux," a melodrama from TFM Distribution about two children coping with their divorced parents' shared custody arrangement. Its opening round drew $1.3 million from 340 screens and a No. 4 market ranking.

Opening at No. 5 was EuropaCorp. Distribution's import of actor-director Tony Jaa's martial arts drama "Ong Bak 2," from Thailand's Sahamongkol Film; its gross was $1.1 million from 251 spots. The Weinstein Co.'s "The Reader" finished at No. 6 in France with $977,000 from 294 locations in its second round. Market cume for the Kate Winslet starrer stands at $3 million.

Four of the top five boxoffice titles in Japan were local language films, mostly animation outings. Teen baseball drama "The Rookies" from Toho has grossed $85.3 million over nine frames in the market. No. 7 was Summit Int'l.'s "Knowing" with Nicolas Cage, which has grossed $8.6 million in Japan over three stanzas.

Other international cumes: Pixar/Disney's "Up," $55.5 million; Fox's "Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian," $212.2 million; Sony's "Terminator Salvation," $237.7 million; Universal's "State of Play," $48.5 million; Fox's "X-Men Origins: Wolverine," $183.4 million; Universal's "The Limits of Control," $28,738 (opening softly at five situations in Australia); Sony's "Year One," $9.3 million; DreamWorks/Paramount's "I Love You, Man," $17.8 million; Paramount's "The Uninvited," $9.9 million; Universal's "Land of the Lost," $8.7 million; Sony's Angels & Demons," $348.6 million; Paramount's "Star Trek," $125.7 million; Focus Features/Universal's "Coraline," $39.8 million; and DreamWorks Animation/Paramount's "Monsters vs. Aliens," $179.3 million.
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