'Hancock' just keeps soaringIt was a sizzling weekend at the international boxoffice as vacationing school kids turned out in droves and soccer aficionados returned to the cineplex following the Euro Cup finals to greet superheroes, family fare and a surprise musical offering.
The Will Smith starrer "Hancock" led the summer assault with a huge $70.4 million from 8,125 screens in 67 markets in its second weekend of overseas release, raising its foreign gross to $180.6 million.
The Paramount/DreamWorks animated entry "Kung Fu Panda" reached an international cume of $218.4 million as it pulled in $42.2 million from 5,384 playdates in 44 territories, and Universal's film adaptation of stage musical "Mamma Mia!" had audiences singing along to the tune $24.3 million from 1,405 showings in 12 territories.
Disney/Walden Media's "The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian," meanwhile, went up to $216.5 million as it tallied $11 million from 33 countries, and Disney/Pixar's much-heralded "WALL-E" picked up $7.5 million from 2,101 screens in 12 markets as it continues a gradual rollout that will end in December in Japan.
Another weekend surprise was Asia's move into tentpole territory. John Woo's period war epic "Red Cliff" — at $80 million, the most expensive Asian film ever made — brought in an estimated $20.8 million from six markets.
At the same time, a couple of high-profile films scheduled for three-to-four-month rollouts are showing early promise in limited release, including Universal's "Hellboy II: The Golden Army" and New Line's "Journey to the Center of the Earth."
Superhero and action holdovers also are attracting big audiences. Russian director Timur Bekmambetov's violent "Wanted" registered another $9.2 million to hoist its foreign gross to $80.5 million, and the Steven Spielberg-directed "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" hit an impressive $440.8 million as it enticed $5.3 million from 1,835 screens in 44 markets.
In its second overseas session, which included 12 new bows, "Hancock" held the No. 1 slot in 30 markets, opening to $11.4 million from 589 screens in Russia, $9.9 million from 739 in France, $4.6 million from 783 in Mexico, $2.2 million from 429 in India, $1.7 million from 90 in Holland, $1.3 million from 69 in Belgium and $1 million from 81 in the Ukraine.
Holdovers saw the U.K. dip 45% for a two-weekend total of $33.4 million; Germany was off 37% for a cume of $24.2 million; Korea fell 38% for a cume of $14.7 million; and Australia dropped 47% for a cume of $14.4 million.
"Panda" launched in France ($7.4 million from 761 screens), Spain ($6.3 million from 581), Belgium ($1.7 million from 102) and the Netherlands ($1.9 million from 154). Territorial cumes to date include $27.8 million in six weeks from Korea; $20.2 million in three from Australia; $11.1 million in two from Germany; $20.5 million in five from Russia; and $21.5 million in 10 days from the U.K.
The U.K., where the stage musical "Mamma Mia!" originated nine years ago, welcomed the film version at No. 1 with $13.1 million from 494 prints. Australia also had a No. 1 opening, registering $5.2 million from 258 sites, while Sweden — home of popular '70s group ABBA whose songs are featured in the film — opened at No. 1 with $1.7 million from 144 screens, hailed as Universal's fourth-biggest opening ever in the market.
"Red Cliff," for which Summit Entertainment holds the distribution rights for a great part of the world, grossed $15.8 million in its first weekend in China (non-Summit), $1.4 million in Hong Kong (non-Summit) and $2.5 million in Taiwan via 20th Century Fox International. Summit territories in which the film opened include Singapore ($760,000) and Thailand (402,000).
"Hellboy II" kicked off with $4.7 million from 481 playdates in Mexico, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore and is set for release around the world in the next four months.
The 3-D version of "Journey to the Center of the Earth" opened to $3.9 million in five markets, with the U.K. delivering $3.9 million and Brazil, $1.2 million.
Fox's Eddie Murphy comedy "Meet Dave" failed to impress as it took off in 18 markets, tallying only $3.4 million from 949 screens, with Russia providing $1.2 million from 442 and Australia, $1 million from 188.
Warner Bros.' "Get Smart," provided a weekend gross of $6.4 million from 2,170 screens in 27 markets, lifting its cume to $46.2 million. (partialdiff)