German Box Office Booty Bigger Than Expected

Disney Enterprises
Johnny Depp starrer 'Pirates of The Caribbean' boost Germany's BO perf

3D titles led by 'Pirates 4' take territory to best result since 2002.

By Scott Roxborough
BERLIN - 3D pirates, norse gods and high speed racers helped power Germany's box office to a sterling first half, with Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides
, Thor and Fast and Furious Five among the Hollywood hits driving revenues up 2.5 percent to $652 million (€452.8 million) and admissions 2.2 percent stronger to 1.3 million.

The official figures, released Monday by the German Film Board, were even better than Rentrack EDI's rosy estimates predicted.

The box office result is the best for Germany since 2002 and the second-best of all time. 3D titles were the engine behind the growth, making up 20 percent of total admissions and significantly more of the box office take.

The second half is already off to a strong start, with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows - Part 2 taking some $75 million the territory for Warner Bros. and the studio's R-rated comedy Hangover 2 waking up with a German cume of $42 million. (€29.4 million.)

Add in Paramount's Transformers 3 (German take $39 million), and it is starting to look like a record breaking year.

Still to come are Paul WS Anderson's The Three Musketeers and Roland Emmerich's Shakespeare conspiracy thriller Anonymous, both expected to be major titles for Germany.

The pair, both German co-productions, should also help local fare hold onto its share of the box office pie. In the first half, German films accounted for 20.4 per cent of all tickets sold.