'Ratatouille' cooks up o'seas win

German bow helps Dis pic knock off 'Chuck & Larry'

A delectable opening in Germany helped Disney/Pixar's "Ratatouille" finish as the No. 1 film internationally during the weekend with an estimated $19.7 million from 3,010 playdates in 30 markets.

The animated movie about a Parisian rat with a discerning palette cooked up an estimated $12.2 million on 700 screens to open No. 1 in Germany.

"Ratatouille" was "like a vacuum cleaner in Germany," Disney vp international sales and distribution David Kornblum said.

The film also bowed at No. 1 in Austria with an estimated $1.6 million from 125 dates and came out on top in German-speaking Switzerland with an estimated $905,000 from 125 screens. An opening in Denmark tickled another $865,000 from 50 screens.

In holdove markets, "Ratatouille" earned another $760,000 in France on 592 screens to take its local cume to $59 million as well as an estimated $650,000 on 129 screens in Greece during its second weekend to take its cume there to $1.6 million.

The international cume for Pixar's latest release stands at $247 million; it's at $450 million worldwide. That makes "Ratatouille" the 14th-biggest movie launched internationally by Disney and its 15th-biggest release of all time.

Next up for the Pixar concoction is a Friday opening in the U.K., Italy on Oct. 17, and Oct. 19 bows in China, Sweden, Poland and Finland.

In second place for the weekend was Universal International's "I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry," which grossed an estimated $6.7 million at 2,220 playdates in 38 markets to take its international cume to $48.2 million.

"Chuck & Larry" grabbed the No. 2 spot in Germany behind "Ratatouille," earning $2.2 million at 475 dates, taking its 11-day total to $6.9 million.

The comedy also held its No. 2 position in Austria with an estimated $470,000 on 84 screens, taking its local cume after 10 days to $1.2 million.

The No. 3 slot during the weekend is shared by Universal's "The Bourne Ultimatum" and Paramount Pictures International's "The Heartbreak Kid," both of which posted an estimated gross of $5.7 million.

"Bourne" did its business on 3,466 screens in 37 territories, bringing its international total to $172 million. The Matt Damon action thriller opened with an estimated $600,000 in Greece at 55 dates, and it earned another $560,000 on 323 screens in Germany for a 32-day total of $13.9 million.

The U.K. contributed another $450,000 on 164 screens to take its local cume to $46.5 million. "Bourne" grabbed another $650,000 at 176 dates in Australia for a 39-day total of $17 million.

Meanwhile, Paramount saw its Ben Stiller starrer "Heartbreak" earn $5.7 million after opening on 876 screens in four territories. In Britain, the Farrelly brothers comedy grossed an estimated $2.5 million on 408 screens, with Russia contributing another $2.4 million from 360 locations and Portugal grossing an estimated $416,000 from 45 playdates.

In fourth place overall is "Superbad," with an estimated weekend gross of $4.2 million on 1,810 screens in 19 territories. Its cume to date is $23 million.

The latest openings for the Sony teen comedy include Germany, with $1.2 million pulled from 500 screens; Austria, with $125,000 on 62 screens; Mexico, with an estimated $340,000 at 270 dates; and Columbia, bringing in $55,000 at 50 locations.

In fifth is to Warner Bros. Pictures International's "The Brave One," which earned an estimated $4.1 million on 2,100 screens in 26 markets. The Jodie Foster crime drama reported $747,000 from 305 screens in Spain and another $740,000 from 402 prints in Germany, while Italy grossed an estimated $500,000 at 252 locations. Its international cume stands at $14.8 million.

Other international titles during the weekend included Universal's "The Kingdom," bowing to an estimated gross of $3.2 million at 745 locations. The thriller opens this weekend in Germany, Austria and the Netherlands.

"Evan Almighty," another Universal contender, posted an estimated $3.1 million from 1,180 playdates in 32 territories, bringing its international total to $67 million.

Paramount's "Stardust" scooped an estimated $2.8 million sprinkled over 1,018 screens in 27 markets to bring its cume to $26.3 million. Sony's "Surf's Up" laughed its way to another estimated $2.8 million on 2,010 screens in 33 markets. Its international cume is $54.5 million.

Other players included Warners' "No Reservations" booking an estimated $2.4 million at 1,797 locations in 52 markets for an international cume of $41.3 million, while Sony's "Resident Evil: Extinction" extended its overseas run with $2.3 million on 665 screens in six markets, taking its international total to $33.4 million.

Disney's "Underdog" dug up a weekend frame of $1.9 million from 859 screens in 12 territories, while Universal's "Atonement" played to $1.3 million on 454 screens. Fox's "28 Weeks Later" took its international cume to $34.4 million after managing an estimated $1.2 million at 650 dates in 14 markets for the weekend.

Other cume updates: Paramount's "Shrek the Third," $469.4 million (weekend estimate is $1 million from 678 dates in 64 territories); Warners' "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," $644.7 million (weekend estimate is $493,000 from 980 screens in 40 markets); and Fox's "The Simpsons Movie," $339 million (weekend estimate is $1 million from two markets).