'King Fu Panda 2' Commands Foreign Box Office for Second Weekend in a Row
By Frank Segers
DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu Panda 2 decisively seized for the second consecutive round the weekend’s No. 1 box office spot on the foreign theatrical circuit, generating $52.5 million from 10,267 venues in 55 markets and pushing its overseas gross total to $280 million.
Top ranked domestic title on the weekend, Warner Bros.’ Green Lantern, opened No. 5 foreign circuit spot, drawing a mild-mannered $17 million from some 3,250 screens in 15 markets. The film recreation of the DC comics superhero, starring Ryan Reynolds, took the top spot in its U.K. bow ($4.9 million from 907 locations) while landing No. 2 in Russia ($3.2 million from 771 spots).
Panda 2 via Paramount took the top spots in each of its 10 new markets with France leading the list with $7.2 million derived from 760 sites, beating the 2008 original comparable market figure by 4%.
Germany tally for the 3D sequel was $6.8 million from 690, 45% more than the original drew in the market. Spain provided $2.8 million from 403 locations while Belgium opened at 115 spots to $1.2 million. Panda 2 opens in Australia this week.
Weekend action offshore was spiced somewhat by the introductions of three fresh comedies at the outset of their foreign box office forays.
Sony’s Bad Teacher, an R-rated comedy costarring Cameron Diaz and Justin Timberlake about a foul-mouthed junior high school teacher, made its foreign debut in the U.K., finishing No. 2 in the market with $3.4 million drawn from 520 locations. Openings in over 20 overseas European markets are due this week.
Fox declined to report weekend gross figures for Mr. Popper’s Penguins, the Jim Carrey comedy, which opened No. 3 in the U.S. and Canada. Overseas bows were in five small markets – Jamaica, the Philippines, Singapore, South Africa and Trinidad.
“Besides the fact that we expect no more than $500,000 to $600,000 combined gross box office this weekend from these early release, we won’t have actual (box office figures) until Monday,” said the distributor. A “long, slow rollout” offshore lands June 23 in Germany followed the by bows in Australia and Brazil next week.
After playing several miniscule markets, Universal’s Bridesmaids broadened its foreign exposure with openings at 339 sites in seven markets including Australia and New Zealand.
Weekend take was $7.3 million for the female-oriented comedy coscripted by and costarring Kirsten Wiig. Its No. 1 debut in Australia generated $6.8 million from 234 locations while the No. 2 New Zealand bow produced $360,000 from 55 situations. Foreign cume is $7.6 million. U.K. and Russia openings are due this week.
No. 2 on the weekend was Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, which continues to enlarge its foreign gross total with a $25.9 million weekend at 10,450 venues in more than 100 markets.
Overseas cume stands at $731.9 million, with Disney predicting that the Jerry Bruckheimer production starring Johnny Depp will overtake this week 2003’s The Lord of the Rings:The Return of the King (cume of $742.1 million) as the third biggest box office hit ever to play the foreign circuit.
On Stranger Tides has rolled up a worldwide gross of $952.2 million, qualifying for the No. 11 spot on the all-time global box office chart. Biggest foreign market remains Japan, where the film has grossed a total of $87.5 million.
Third on the weekend was The Hangover Part 2, which grossed $21.4 million from about 5,800 screens in 55 markets, hoisting its foreign cume to $256 million. Distributor Warner’s notes that with a $488 million worldwide take, the sequel beat the $468 million generated by 2009’s The Hangover to become the biggest-grossing R-rated comedy of all time.
The weekend’s No. 4 title was 20th Century Fox’s X-Men: First Class, which pushed its foreign gross total to $163.2 million thanks to a $21.2 million weekend generated from 9,086 screens in 67 territories. A No. 3 weekend in South Korea resulted in $2.1 million drawn from 379 spots for a market cume of $13.5 million.
Director J.J. Abrams Super 8, produced by Steven Spielberg, has registered $22 million in foreign box office after its second round offshore. Weekend contributed $12.5 million from 2,252 spots with a Russia debut offering $4.1 million from 596 locations.
In France, Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris and Terrence Malick’s Cannes Festival Palme d’Or winner Tree of Life are fading at the boxoffice. Mars Distribution’s release of Midnight finished in the No. 10 spot in its sixth market weekend, drawing an estimated $500,000 from 400 screens for a local cume of $12.4 million.
Also in its sixth France week, Tree of Life via Europa Film grossed an estimated $300,000 from some 300 playdates for a market cume of $6 million. Overall on the weekend, Tree generated $2 million at 1,040 screens in 15 territories. Total overseas cume stands at $15.9 million, with the U.K., Australia, Spain, Japan and South Korea yet to play.
Taking the No. 7 spot in France in its second round was Memento Films release of Nader and Simin, A Separation, Iranian director Asghar Farhadi’s domestic drama which won the top Golden Bear prize at this years Berlin Film Festival. Weekend provided some $700,000 from 105 screens, down a mild-mannered 30% from the opening stanza. Market cume stands at $2.3 million.
Other international cumes: Sony’s Priest, $46 million; Fox’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules, $16.8 million; Universal’s Fast Five $385 million; Fox’s Black Swan, $218.8 million; Universal’s The Adjustment Bureau, $61.5 million; Dox’s Water For Elephants, $56.7 million; Universal’s The Debt, opened in France for $600,000 at 210 sites; Summit Int’l./Alcon Entertainment’s Something Borrowed, $17.8 million; and Universal’s Paul, $55.5 million.