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Grossing 47% less than last weekend, Summit Int’l.’s The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part I still managed to remain No. 1 on the foreign theatrical circuit this round, bleeding an estimated $40.4 million from some 9,685 screens in 73 territories
Box office total over three overseas frames for the fourth installment of the girl-loves-vampire saga based on Stephanie Meyer’s novels comes to $344.8 million.
While well ahead of the $200 million grossed offshore by series original (2008’s Twilight), Breaking Dawn still lags behind the total offshore takes of 2009’s The Twilight Saga: New Moon ($416 million) and last year’s The Twilight Saga: Eclipse ($400 million).
Nonetheless, Breaking Dawn provided a spark to an otherwise lethargic box office round internationally. It opened No. 1 in South Korea, logging an estimated $3.2 millon from some 640 sites ($4.4 including previews). Robust market cumes so far include the U.K. ($42.7 million), Russia ($30.5 million), France ($26 million) and Australia ($25.4 million).
The weekend’s less-than-stellar box office overall do not detract from the strong numbers in 2011 to date logged by the Hollywood studios.
Calendar year gross estimates to date indicate that with nearly a month left – and several holiday films still to open offshore – the six major studios are rushing towards a new foreign box office record in 2011.
Through Nov. 30, the “big six” amassed combined international box office of $12.432 billion, just $268 million shy of the 2010’s record $12.7 million benchmark, according to studio figures.
Paramount International leads the pack in the 11-month overseas gross sweepstakes with total box office of $2.764 billion, followed by Warner Brothers International with $2.600 billion, matching the unit’s comparable 2010 total.
Then, Disney ($2.168.billion), 20th Century Fox ($2.022 billion, down 23% from 2010), Sony ($1.677 billion) and Universal ($1.201 billion, up 9% from last year).
Broadening its foreign run by openings in 13 new territories, DreamWorks Animation’s Puss In Boots elevated its weekend gross to $22.7 million derived from a total of 3,382 venues in 25 markets. It finished No. 2 on the weekend. Cume for the 3D animation spinoff of Shrek stands at $89 million. (Paramount is handling offshore distribution.)
Biggest of the new markets was France, where Puss opened No. 2 with $8.1 drawn from 671 situations. A No. 1 Mexico opening generated $3.8 million from 526 locations while the second round in Spain contributed $3.1 million from 383 sites. In Russia, the market cume has topped $50 million. Puss opens in 17 markets this week including the U.K., Germany, Australia, New Zealand, Belgium, Brazil and Venezuela.
Third on the weekend was France’s comedy sensation, Intouchables, which continues its torrid pace in the market, holding the No. 1 spot for the fifth consecutive weekend with $14.6 million from some 720 screens. Market cume is $102.6 million – phenomenal.
Total weekend take from France, Belgium and French-speaking Switzerland was $16 million from 858 locations, for a three-market cume of $109.4 million. The Gaumont release is about the prickly relationship between a wealthy quadriplegic (Francois Cluzet) and his caretaker (Omar Sy).
No. 4 was Warner Bros.’ release of Happy Feet Two, Village Roadshow’s family-oriented animation sequel about an amiable penguin. Weekend take registered $15.6 million derived from 6,864 screens in 40 territories, raising the foreign cume to $33.3 million.
A No. 2 opening in the U.K. generated $2.65 million from 491 sites. A Russia bow generated $3.4 million from 926 sites while a No. 3 Germany debut kicked in $1.3 million from 690 sites. Happy Feet Two opens in France on Wednesday (Dec. 7).
No. 5 on the weekend was Sony Animation’s Arthur Christmas opened in at least a dozen new markets, generating $11.9 million on the weekend overall from 5,540 situations in 52 markets. Top market tally was generated in the U.K. where the seasonal family title ranked No. 1 in its fourth stanza, raising $2.98 million from 502 sites for a market cume of $18.2 million. Total foreign gross: $39 million
Dominating the Russian front was Sony’s release of its locally-made coproduction Vysotsky: Thanks God I’m Alive, about the private life of drug-addicted singer-songwriter, actor and director Vladimir Vysotsky. Opening at some 1,400 locations, the film drew a mighty $11.2 million, the market’s third biggest opening gross ever.
20th Century Fox’s release of In Time, New Regency’s sci-fi thriller costarring Justin TimberlakeandAmanda Seyfried had a No. 2 opening in Austria and in Germany, drawing $2.7 million from 414 sites from the latter. Weekend overall generated $9.6 million from 2,400 situations in 45 territories, pushing the film’s foreign cume to $81.6 million.
Relativity Media/Universal’s Immortals drew $6.6 million, elevating its overseas cume to $102 million. Sony/Paramount’s The Adventures of Tintin:The Secret of the Unicorn finished the weekend with $6.3 million drawn from 3,502 sites. Steven Spielberg’s stop motion animation in 3D, which won’t open in the U.S. until Dec. 21, has grossed a total of $220.5 million since it opened offshore on Oct. 26.
Still No. 1 in its second Japan round was Toho’s Kaibutsu:The Movie, which collected $5.79 on the weekend from 446 locations, pushing its market cume to $15.5 million. Disney’s Real Steel, now in its ninth round of offshore release, lifted its foreign gross total to $176.4 million thanks to a $5.3 million weekend from playdates in 51 territories. A Japan opening looms this week for the Hugh Jackman sci-fi vehicle.
With 10 territories still to open, including Mexico on Friday, Universal’s Tower Heist has snared a foreign gross total so far of $42.6 million. Weekend for the crime caper costarring Ben Stiller and Eddie Murphy drew $4.1 million from 1,935 playdates in 46 markets.
Opening No. 4 in the U.K. was Entertainment Film Distributors’ release of director Martin Scorsese’s Hugo. The GK Films co-production about the adventures of an orphaned boy inside a Paris train station in the 1930s drew $1.9 million from 442 locations.
Premiering No. 1 in Italy via Medusa Film was Woody Allen’s comedy Midnight In Paris. Opening round at some 400 screens drew an estimated $3 million.
Opening No.3 in France was Gaumont’s release of Les Lyonnais (A Gang Story), a French gangster saga based on the autobiography of a famous 1970’s bank robber. Directed by cop turned cineaste Olivier Marchal, the action drama drew and estimated $3.2 million from 442 screens.
In Spain, Universal released Fuga De Cerebros 2 (Brain Drain 2), Antenna 3 Films’ sequel to its 2009 romantic comedy about a dim-witted high schooler’s crush on the brightest girl in the class. The Spanish-language title opened No. 3 in the market, grossing $2.1 million from 340 situations, the second biggest opening of a local language film in Spain this year.
Universal also opened Morgan Creek’s remake of The Thing in the U.K. where is finished No. 5 in the market, grossing $762,114 at 304 situations. Universal’s cume for the horror film update stands at $7.6 million. (The studio is handling distribution in 28 overseas territories on Morgan Creek’s behalf.)
Other international cumes: Disney’s The Muppets, $4 million (from three markets); Universal’s A Dangerous Method, $4.8 million; Fox’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes, $306.1 million; Universal’s Johnny English Reborn, $149.6 million; DreamWorks/Disney’s The Help, $31.5 million; Fox’s You Are The Apple Of My Eye, $24.2 million; and Disney’s The Lion King 3D, $68.8 million.
Also, Sony’s Jack and Jill, $11.8 million; The Weinstein Co.’s My Week With Marilyn, $2.95 million in two rounds in U.K. only; Focus Features’ One Day. $41.4 million; Universal’s The Change-Up, $33.6 million; Paramount’s Paranormal Activity 3, $98.2 million; The Weinstein Co.’s The Artist, $13.8 million; Focus Features’ Beginners, $8.4 million; Fox’s The Big Year, $244,247; Focus Features/Universal’s Jane Eyre, $18.9 million; Universal’s The Debt, $14.2 million; and Focus Features’ The Conspirator, $2.7 million; Fox’s What’s Your Number, $16.7 million.
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