'Orphanage' racing up Spain's b.o. chart


MADRID -- Juan Antonio Bayona's chilling tale "The Orphanage," set for a U.S. release in December via Picturehouse, is the highest-grossing Spanish production at the local boxoffice since 2003, production house Telecinco Cinema said Wednesday.

With 20.4 million euros ($29.9 million) earned since its premiere five weeks ago, "The Orphanage" has moved ahead of last year's top-grossing film, the Viggo Mortensen starrer "Alatriste," and only 3 million euros behind this year's top earner, "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End," with 23.2 million euros ($34 million).

Alejandro Amenabar's 2001 "The Others" (27.1 million euros), Javier Fesser's 2003 "The Great Adventure of Mortadelo and Filemon" (22.3 million euros) and Santiago Segura's 2001 "Torrente 2" still maintain an edge over "The Orphanage."

"The Orphanage," produced by Telecinco and Rodar y Rodar with the participation of Warner Bros. Pictures Spain, centers on a woman's plight when she returns with her family to the orphanage she grew up in. The film represents Spain's bid for a foreign-language Oscar.

New Line holds the remake rights (HR 9/10).