Box Office Report: Daniel Radcliffe's 'Woman in Black' Towers Over Competition in U.K. (Exclusive)

CBS Films

The film, fueled by younger females, beat "The Muppets," "The Vow" and "Star Wars: Episode I" on Friday.

BERLIN -- The boy wizard still has the magic touch.

Following a stellar bow in the U.S. last weekend, Daniel Radcliffe's The Woman in Black opened to No. 1 in the U.K. on Friday despite serious competition, grossing $1.4 million for Momentum Pictures, nearly double the $731,000 earned by Disney's The Muppets in its first day.

Exclusive Media's Hammer Films and Momentum parent company Alliance produced and financed the $16 million horror film, which zoomed ahead of expectations last weekend in the U.S., opening to $20.8 million for domestic distributor CBS Films. Through Saturday, the film's gross there is $28.6 million.

Teenagers and college students flocked to see the film in the U.K., and particularly younger females, who are huge horror fans. There's no doubt some of those who turned out are Harry Potter followers eager to see Radcliffe in his first film since the blockbuster franchise retired from the bigscreen, not to mention that he's British.

Headng into the weekend, box office observers questioned whether Woman in Black, despite strong tracking, would be able to best fellower opener and family film The Muppets, from Disney.

Also opening Friday in the U.K. were Sony's Rachel McAdams-Channing Tatum romantic drama The Vow and Fox's 3D rerelease of George Lucas' Star Wars: Episode I -- The Phantom Menace. Those films placed Nos. 3 and 4 behind Woman in Black and The Muppets, but numbers weren't immediately available.

Thanks to the strength of the four new entries, the box office jumped 26 percent on Friday despite poor weather. On Saturday, they'll will have to compete with two high-profile soccer matches, Manchester vs. Liverpool and Tottenham vs. Newcastle.

Woman in Black also opened No. 1 in Mexico on Friday, though numbers weren't immediately available.


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