'This Is It' leads overseas boxoffice
Michael Jackson doc takes in $68.5 million'This Is It' tops weekend boxoffice
While Michael Jackson remains reasonably popular domestically, he is boxoffice catnip abroad.
Sony's "This Is It," Jackson's posthumously released concert rehearsal film, blanketed the foreign circuit over the last five days, opening at 8,918 screens in 108 overseas territories for a commanding No. 1 boxoffice tally of $69.5 million.
That's more than double the film's $34.4 million five-day boxoffice figure in the U.S. and Canada from a total of 5,500-6,000 screens at 3,481 sites. Sony said that "This Is It's" robust foreign launch is the fifth biggest of 2009.
Worldwide, the film played at more than 15,000 situations for a global opening launch of $103.9 million.
The top five foreign markets for "This Is It" were Japan ($10.3 million from 321 locations), the U.K. ($8 million from 498 sites), Germany ($6.6 million from 781 screens), France ($5.8 million from 447 sites) and Australia ($3.7 million from 293 locations).
"This Is It" rolled out Wednesday in 97 overseas markets day-and-date with its domestic bow, with remaining offshore engagements kicking off on the subsequent two days. It opened No. 1 in most of the foreign markets it played – with the notable exceptions of its No. 2 introduction in Spain, a No. 3 rank in Italy and its No. 6 bow in South Korea.
After five stanzas in the No. 1 spot on the foreign circuit, Pixar/Disney's "Up" finished second with $13.2 million drawn from 4,700 screens in 27 territories, pushing its overseas cume to $352.9 million and its global gross total to $645.6 million. Disney says "Up" now ranks as its third most popular animation title ever. It still trails the $415 million overseas total logged by Pixar/Disney's 2007's hit "Ratatouille."
Third place went to Disney's "G-Force," an animation outing from producer Jerry Bruckheimer, which generated $6.3 million from 2,735 screens in 32 territories and pushed its overseas cume to $147.7 million and its worldwide figure to $266 million.
No. 4 was "Surrogates," a sci-fi title starring Bruce Willis, which opened No. 5 in France, and drew $5.7 million from 1,963 situations in 38 markets overall for an overseas total of $60 million.
Finishing fifth overall was "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs," Sony's animation release about food falling from the sky, which has been playing overseas since Sept. 16. Weekend take was $5.2 million from 2,554 sites in 43 markets for a foreign cume of $52.4 million.
No. 2 in France was "Le petit Nicolas," a Wild Bunch Distribution release of a live-action film based on a French children's book. The fifth weekend drew $5.1 million 630 spots, a 13% increase from the prior weekend. Market cume so far is $37.1 million.
"Kniga masterov" (Book of Masters), a local-language title, was released solely in Russia as Disney's first branded local market production ever. The fairy-tale fantasy directed by Vadim Sokolovsky drew $4.8 million from 750 locations, ranking a dominant No. 1 in the territory.
Warner Bros. opened in France "Micmacs a tire-larigot," a fantasy-tinged satire on the world arms trade co-scripted and directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet, best known for his 2001 hit "Le fableux destin d'Amelie Poulain." Starring French actor-director Dany Boon, "Micmacs" premiered No. 3 in the market with $4.5 million from 618 screens.
No. 4 in France was UGC's "Lucky Luke," which in its second round dipped a relatively benign 30%, drawing $4.1 million from 687 screens for a 10-day market cume of $12 million. The film is a Western, a live-action adaptation of a French comic book character, a gunslinger played by Jean Dujardin.
The Weinstein Co./Universal's "Inglourious Basterds" drew $3.9 million from 2,400 situations in 50 territories, pushing its foreign cume to $179.5 million and its worldwide total to $299 million. The World War II drama from director Quentin Tarantino still has five more territories to play, including Japan on Nov. 20.
"The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus," director and co-scripter Terry Gilliam's adventure fantasy being released overseas by Sony and other distributors, opened No. 4 in Australia, garnering $600,405 from 184 locations. The late Heath Ledger's final film has accumulated $4.8 million in the U.K. over three rounds, and ranked No. 9 in the market on the weekend. International total stands at $12.1 million.
"The Ugly Truth," Sony's romantic comedy co-starring Katherine Heigl and Gerard Butler, bagged $3.3 million from 1,628 screens in 57 territories, boosting its international cume to $107.4 million.
Mandate International's horror outing "Saw VI" is on track to gross $3.3 million from some 1,200 screens for an international cume of $8.6 million in 10 days. In the U.K., Fox's "Fantastic Mr. Fox," an animation comedy from director Wes Anderson, finished its second weekend in the No. 3 spot with a weekend tally of $2.5 million from 483 locations for a market cume of $9.2 million.
Other international cumes: Focus Features' "A Serious Man," $353,936 (over four frames at eight sites in Denmark); New Line/Warner Bros.' "The Final Destination," $113.3 million; Paramount's "An Education," $1 million; Sony's "Julie & Julia," $24.6 million; Universal's "Couples Retreat," $21.9 million (after a $2.3 million weekend at 1,010 screens in 11 markets); Sony's "Zombieland," $10 million; Focus Features' "Love Happens," $5 million; Paramount's "Dance Flick," $5.9 million; Fox's "Jennifer's Body," $10.4 million; Universal's "Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant," $7 million; Paramount's "G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra," $150.9 million; Fox's "Agora," $24.7 million (from Spain only); Universal's "Fast & Furious," $205.3 million; Fox's "Aliens in the Attic," $33.7 million; Universal's "The Invention of Lying," $9.6 million (over 31 days in U.K. and Ireland); Focus Features' "9," $13.8 million (Focus Features territories only); Sony's "District 9," $84.5 million; Fox's "I Love You, Beth Cooper," $1.7 million; Focus Features/Universal's "9," $6.1 million (Universal territories only); Fox's "(500) Days of Summer," 19.6 million; Paramount's "Charlie and Boots," $3.3 million; Universal's "De Storm," $5.9 million from the Netherlands and Belgium only); Fox's "All About Steve," $1.4 million; and Paramount's "Imagine That," $6.2 million.