'Pope Joan' heads strong local German b.o.


COLOGNE, Germany -- Sonke Wortmann's "Pope Joan" crowned Germany's boxoffice this weekend, one of seven German productions or co-productions to make the top ten.

The Constantin Film production, which stars Johanna Wokalek as a 9th century female pontiff, grossed $4.4 million in its first four days, with 370,000 admissions over 461 theaters. The German-Spanish-Italian co-production was shot in English and also stars John Goodman and David Wenham. Summit Entertainment is handling international sales.

German productions crowded out most imports. Simon Verhoeven's romantic comedy "Men In the City," came in at number three, just behind Disney animated family feature "G-Force." A Warner Bros. release, "Men" stars Christian Ulmen, Til Schweiger and Nadja Uhl and has grossed more than $10 million in its first three weeks.

Besides "G-Force," only two other Hollywood titles made the German top ten: "Up," which came in at number five in its fifth week in release and Sony's romcom "The Ugly Truth," which was sixth for the weekend in Germany.

Fourth on the charts was "Vicky the Viking," the children's film from Munich hitmeister Michael "Bully" Herbig. The live-action adaptation of a 1970s children's cartoon, also from Constantin Film, is spending its seventh week in the top ten and has so far earned more than $30 million in Germany.

Swedish-German co-production "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" came in seventh place and three other German titles rounded up the top ten: Sherry Hormann's "Desert Flower," Michael Haneke's Cannes winner "The White Ribbon" and the animated children's film "Laura's Star 2."
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