'Hancock' holds on overseas

'Dark Knight' is No. 2 with $8,889 per-screen average

Opening in just 20 foreign markets at 4,500 screens, "The Dark Knight" grossed an estimated $40 million during the weekend, pushing distributor Warner Bros.' overseas boxoffice total this year past the $1-billion mark.

The sixth in the series of live-action Batman features beginning in 1989, "Dark Knight" scored a solid $8,889 per-screen average but still came in second on the weekend to Sony's "Hancock," which played in nearly four times the overseas markets. "Dark Knight's" very early worldwide cume is $195.3 million.

"Hancock" grossed an estimated $44.8 million in its third weekend overseas, playing 8,286 screens in 71 territories. The international total so far is $253.5 million, tracking 32% ahead of the Will Smith super-hero vehicle's domestic boxoffice pace. Worldwide cume stands at $445 million.

"Dark Knight's" biggest single territory was Australia, where it scored the fifth biggest market opening for a Warners' title and largest opening weekend of any superhero title, says the distributor. The five-day tally was $13.1 million from 473 sites for a mighty per-screen average of nearly $28,000.

In Mexico, the Batman title grossed $6.6 million from 1,433 screens. Its Brazil bow generated $4.3 million from 548 sites. "Dark Knight" openings this week are scheduled in the U.K., Italy and Holland.

"Hancock" -- No. 1 for the third consecutive frame -- has no foreign openings scheduled until August. It premiered this round in four markets, taking the top spot in two: Spain ($8.6 million from 562 sites, the market's 17th biggest opening ever) and Norway ($1 million from 60 sites for a $16,667 per-screen average).

Even though it dropped 54% from the prior weekend in France, "Hancock" held firmly to the No. 1 position with an estimated $4.4 million from 741 screens, for a market cume of $16.8 million.

Finishing third was DreamWorks Animation/Paramount's "Kung Fu Panda," which opened in Denmark, Norway and Sweden. Overall weekend tally was an estimated $27.8 million from 6,525 screens in 58 territories, for an international cume of $270 million.

No. 4 was Universal's "Mamma Mia!" which held remarkably well from its opening weekend with an estimated $26.8 million from 2,407 situations in 21 markets, raising its 11-day cume to $72.6 million. Worldwide, the Meryl Streep starring feature version of the stage musical -- with a musical score by Swedish pop group ABBA -- has surpassed the $100 million gross mark ($100.2 million).

"Mamma Mia!" finished No. 1 in seven of its nine new markets grossing a per-screen average of $11,134. The musical remained solid in the U.K. in its second round there with an estimated $9.3 million from 498 screens, down just 11% from the preceding frame. U.K. market total is $33.7 million in 10 days.

Pixar/Disney's "Wall-E" wound up No. 5 this weekend, with an estimated $14.4 million from 4,125 screens in 20 markets, raising its international total to $53 million and its worldwide cume to $235.5 million. The animation title finished No. 2 in the U.K. behind "Mamma Mia!" with an estimated $8.8 million from 420 locations.

Poised to reach the $100-million gross mark overseas this week is Universal's "Wanted," which logged a $10.6 million weekend at 2,959 dates in 38 markets for a cume of $95.4 million. The fantasy action sequel "Hellboy II: The Golden Army" opened via Universal No. 1 in Russia and Italy, scoring $9.1 million from 1,385 situations in 10 markets for an overseas cume of $16 million. Worldwide tally stands at $72.4 million.

Disney's "The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian" became 2008's fifth biggest overseas hit as it grabbed $7 million from 3,655 screens in 41 markets for an overseas cume of $230 million (versus a domestic total of $139 million). Warner's spy spoof "Get Smart" lured $6.6 million from 2,500 screens in 32 markets for a foreign cume so far of $56 million.

Walden Media/New Line's "Journey to the Center of the Earth" raised its worldwide cume to $44.8 million and its early foreign total to $11.7 million thanks to a $5.6 million weekend at just 1,261 screens in 11 markets. Biggest was France where the adventure title finished fourth in Paris, and generated $2 million in the territory overall from 363 situations for a per-screen average of $5,510.

Fox's "Meet Dave" with Eddie Murphy continued sluggishly overseas with an estimated $3.3 million on the weekend from 1,334 screens in 24 markets for a cume of $8.5 million. Paramount's "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" raised its overseas cume to $448.4 million thanks to a $3.6 million weekend from 1,684 situations in 62 markets.

Other international cumes: New Line's "Sex and the City," $224.8 million; Marvel Prods./Universal's "The Incredible Hulk," $104.5 million; Fox's "The Happening," $84.3 million; Sony's "You Don't Mess With the Zohan," $26.6 million; Paramount's "The Love Guru," $2 million; Fox's "Meet the Spartans," $46.2 million; and Fox's "Battle of Red Cliff," $4 million (in Taiwan only).