Six pics top $10 million at overseas boxoffice

'Simpsons' leads record summer market for fourth weekend

Studio stats compilers had a ball as summer entries kept up a blistering pace at the overseas boxoffice, with a half-dozen high-profile films each racking up over $10 million, an accomplishment that's believed to be the first time that six films have topped $10 million at the overseas boxoffice in the same weekend.

20th Century Fox's "The Simpsons Movie" led the international parade for the fourth week in a row with $22.3 million, followed closely by Universal's "The Borne Ultimatum" with $22 million, and then by Disney's "Ratatouille," $16.4 million; Warner Bros. Pictures' "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," $15.6 million; Paramount/DreamWorks' "Transformers," $10.7 million; and New Line's "Rush Hour 3," $10.6 million.

Among other films in international release as the record summer season comes to a close were Sony's animated offering "Surf's Up," $7 million; Fox's "Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer," $5.2 million; Fox's "Die Hard 4.0," $4.8 million; Paramount's "Stardust," $4.8 million; and Universal's "Evan Almighty," $4.2 million.

Fox International believes "The Simpsons" is heading for the $300 million bracket. The fourth-weekend tally brought the animated comedy's cume to $268 million as it played on 7,092 screens in 61 territories. Openings that contributed to the weekend take included No. 1 bows in three markets, with Brazil delivering $2.7 million from 459 screens; Russia, $3.8 million from 545; and Holland, $852,000 from 200, said to be the biggest opening ever in the market for an animated film. Homer and Marge will journey to Korea this coming weekend.

As the final tentpole of a busy international summer, "The Bourne Ultimatum" showed plenty of bite as it took off in eight new markets, headed by the U.K.'s rousing No. 1 welcome of $13 million from 458 screens. Six days in Spain, thanks to a local holiday, supplied $5.1 million from 425 screens and a No. 1 entry to the market. Denmark was good for $527,605 from 49 screens in three days, and Finland, $218,304 from 26, also in three days. Singapore, the Philippines, Israel and Bulgaria also contributed nicely to the weekend opening, which, with the help of holdovers, lifted the Matt Damon actioner to a cume of $27.7 million.

"Ratatouille," confidently cooking its way around the globe, raised its international cume to $149.2 million, mainly as a result of second helpings. The Disney/Pixar animated offering held the No. 1 post for a third week in a row in France, taking in $7.7 million from 723 screens for a market cume of $35.3 million in 19 days. The third weekend was only off 12%. Japan was also down 12% in its fourth session, taking in $1.8 million from 326 screens for a market gross of $12.6 million. In weekend bows, Portugal registered $1.1 million from 79 screens; Malaysia, $300,000 from 52; and Indonesia, $320,000 from 55. The U.K., Australia, Italy and Scandinavia are booked for September and October.

At the same time, "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," maintaining a brisk pace at its sixth weekend of international release, reached a cume of $591.2 million as it brought in the $15.6 million from 6,500 prints in 62 territories. The film held the No. 1 position in Japan for a second straight weekend, earning $2.6 million from 631 screens for a market cume to date of $63.4 million. In its second weekend in China, Harry and friends generated $3.2 million from 525 prints for a market cume of $13.4 million.

"Transformers," which has almost completed all of its foreign openings, checked in with a cume of $353.7 million after its weekend performance of $10.7 million. Market cumes to date include $41.2 million from the U.K. in three weeks, $50.5 million from Korea in seven weeks, $23.5 million from Japan in two weeks, and $23.4 million from Australia in seven weeks.

"Rush Hour 3," making its way internationally via local territorial distributors and Warner Bros. International (a New Line sister company), grabbed top honors in Germany with $4 million from 600 screens and also came in first in Austria, Hong Kong and Iceland. Good returns also came from Switzerland, Indonesia and Lebanon. In the U.K., "Rush Hour 3" dropped 44% from its opening round but shows a nine-day take in the market of $12.8 million. The international cume has reached $25.9 million following the weekend tally of $10.6 million.

Universal's "Evan Almighty," the only summer tentpole that failed to draw overseas crowds, plugged along to a weekend catch of $4.2 million from 2,192 screens in 26 markets to provide a cume to date of $31.2 million. It opened at No. 8 in France to $895,880 from 395 screens.

Sony's "Surf's Up" joined the animation parade with a $7 million take from 2,170 screens in 39 countries for a cume to date of $24.7 million. Paramount's fantasy "Stardust" went up to $9.1 million following a $4.8 million weekend from 698 screens in five markets. "Die Hard 4.0" has reached a cume of $214.6 million after taking in $4.8 million from 2,075 screens in 18 territories.

"I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry" united for a $2.3 million weekend from 371 screens in six markets (cume to date: $5.2 million).

"Shrek the Third," still playing on 1,984 screens in 21 markets, earned another $1.3 million over the weekend to hoist its international gross to $414.4 million.
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