International Box Office: Paramount's 'Thor' Claims No. 1 With Stellar $87 Million Opening
It's the May Day weekend, and summer is already in second gear on the foreign theatrical circuit.
Paramount's Thor decisively claimed the weekend's No. 1 box office spot on the foreign theatrical circuit with a gross of $87 million -- $4 million more than was projected on Sunday -- from some 7,500 locations in 56 overseas territories.
The Thor take represents 2011's biggest opening weekend tally on the foreign circuit by more than $30 million.
Director Kenneth Branagh's 3D interpretation of a Stan Lee comic book about an otherworldly renegade warrior defending planet earth opened No. 1 in the U.K. and Ireland ($9 million from 500 situations over five days), in France ($83 million from 608 locales), South Korea ($5 million from 446 spots), Italy ($5.5 million from 455 locations) and Spain ($5 million from 377 situations).
Thor also recorded first place openings in several smaller markets including Taiwan ($1.5 million from 51 sites for a per-screen average of $29,411), Singapore and the Philippines. In Vietnam, the opener yielded $308,000 from 19 sites, which Paramount said was a three-day debut record for the market.
So far, Thor has tallied an overall foreign gross of $97 million. The Marvel Entertainment outing, budgeted at a reported $150 million, opened last round in Australia where this time it drew a second-weekend tally of $3.2 million from 391 locations, hoisting the Down Under cume to $12.6 million.
Universal's Fast Five, which like Thor opened overseas last weekend (in the U.K., Australia, South Korea and New Zealand), drew $45.9 million this time from 3,139 playdates in 14 territories, running up its early foreign gross total to $82 million.
Fast Five ranks No. 2 on the weekend overseas; in the U.S. and Canada it opened No. 1 on the weekend. Worldwide, the fifth sequel in the turbocharged car action franchise grossed a weekend total of $132.1 million for a $168.2 million cume overall.
The action title starring Vin Diesel, Dwayne Johnson and Paul Walker grabbed No. 1 slots in each of its 10 new overseas markets with Russia leading the pack with $11.6 million drawn from 714 sites, the distributor's biggest market opening ever.
Other No. 1 debuts included Germany ($10.5 million from 633 spots), Austria ($1.6 million from 87 situations) and Turkey ($1 million from 175 venues, Universal's biggest opening weekend in the market ever).Biggest Fast Five holdover was Australia where it commanded the No. 1 slot with $4.5 million from 230 sites, off 44% from the opening round. Down Under cume stands at $20.7 million.
Thor is set to open in Finland and China by next weekend while Fast Five will open in 45 markets this week including France, Italy, Brazil and Mexico.