'Wanted' is tops overseas

Universal thriller nabs $33 million in 22 territories

Universal International's "Wanted" proved to be the international circuit's most desired title during the weekend, grabbing the No. 1 boxoffice spot with an action packed $33 million from 1,922 screens in 22 territories.

Disney/Pixar's "WALL-E," the No. 1 title domestically, set a promising opening pace in a limited, six-market overseas bow, grossing an estimated $3.1 million from 400 screens in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Panama, Ecuador and Trinidad.

Finishing in the No. 2 weekend spot was DreamWorks Animation/Paramount's "King Fu Panda," which had powerhouse bows in six territories and landed with $21.5 million overall from 3,401 sites in 24 markets. Its international gross total stands at $98.5 million, while the worldwide tally is $277.8 million.

As the European soccer championships wound to a conclusion Sunday, third-place finisher "The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian" introduced itself to continental Europe, scoring strongly in the U.K. and France for an overall weekend estimate of $20.1 million from 4,200 screens in 34 markets. Its overseas the cume is $161.8 million; with $298.8 million globally.

Coming in at No. 4 was Marvel/Universal's "The Incredible Hulk," which dropped nearly 50% from the previous weekend to an estimated $12.1 million from 4,243 situations in 54 markets, for an international cume of $85.5 million. Worldwide, its total gross is $201 million.

Fifth on the weekend was Warner Bros. International's "Get Smart" starring Steve Carell, which played its second weekend overseas on 2,386 screens in 21 markets for an estimated $11.8 million. Strong openings in Australia ($3.8 million from 322 sites) and Mexico ($3 million from 700 screens) sparked overall action, bringing the spy spoof's overseas cume to $20.1 million. Globally, its cume is $97.4 million.

Last weekend's No. 1 title, Paramount's "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull," finished out of the top five this round but remained strong in its second weekend in Japan ($5.2 million from 327 spots for a market cume of $24 million). Overall, "Crystal Skull" pulled in $11.4 million from 4,721 spots in 62 markets for an overseas cume of $413 million.

Based on a comic series by Mark Millar and J.G. Jones, "Wanted" starring James McAvoy, Angelina Jolie and Morgan Freeman, had a smashing Russian opening, grossing $11 million from 612 sites for a rousing per-screen average of $18,000. Generally, it finished at No. 1 in almost all territories that it played.

The director of the action title -- about a put-upon office nerd's conversion into a world-class assassin -- is Kazakhstan-born Timur Bekmambetov, whose past two fantasy thriller titles ("2004's "Night Watch" and 2006's "Day Watch") were substantial hits in Russia. "Wanted's" early worldwide gross tally is $84.1 million.

Disney said that "WALL-E's" overseas total opening gross is 24% ahead of the opening tally of 2007's "Ratatouille" in the same six markets. "Ratatouille" went on to gross $415 million overseas.

20th Century Fox International's "The Happening" tallied an estimated $6.7 million from 4,807 screens in 65 territories, for an overseas cume of $69.6 million. The Adam Sandler comedy "You Don't Mess With the Zohan," boosted its early international total to $19.2 million thanks to a $3.4 million weekend from 1,065 screens in 10 markets. Universal's "Forgetting Sarah Marshall" is up to a cume of $31.7 million after a $2.3 million weekend in 1,005 sites in 20 territories.

A pair of local-language openings sparked the France market during the weekend. Finishing second in Paris and suburbs was "Seuls two," from writer-directors Ramzy Bedia and Eric Judor. The comedy about two men stranded in a deserted Paris laughed all the way to an estimated $5.5 million marketwide.

Opening at No. 5 in Paris and suburbs was "Waltz With Bashir," Ari Folman's animated documentary about an Israeli soldier's loss of memory concerning military action in Lebanon. The 2008 Festival de Cannes entry grossed an estimated $1.3 million overall in the territory. The annual "La fete du Cinema" began Sunday across France accompanied by reductions in theater admission prices.

Other international cumes: Fox's "What Happens in Vegas," $24.6 million (thanks to a $1.8 million weekend from 1,200 screens in 22 markets); Sony's "Made of Honor," $47.8 million; Fox's "Street Kings," $33.6 million; Sony's "21," $70.7 million; Walden Media/Universal's "Nim's Island," $15.5 million (Universal territories only); and Warner's "Speed Racer," which opens Saturday in Japan, $40.6 million.
comments powered by Disqus