International Box Office: Paramount's 'Thor' Claims No. 1 With Stellar $87 Million Opening

10:58 AM PST 05/01/2011 by Frank Segers
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Zade Rosenthal/Marvel

UPDATED: Universal's "Fast Five" takes in a solid $45.9 million on its second weekend overseas, while Fox's "Rio" drops to No. 3.

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.

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