News

Around the World Round Up: 'Alexander' Rises as 'Incredibles' Tops $300M

by Conor Bresnan
January 12, 2005

Oliver Stone
Alexander had a mixed reception last weekend overseas. In the United Kingdom, the picture grossed a sturdy $2.295 million from 415 screens. This was a somewhat poor start, however. Although Warner Bros. touts it as higher than the opening of The Patriot (the English have never been too kind to American Independence pictures), it performed below expectations. The opening didn't even math The Beach or Twister.

On the other hand, Alexander had the fourth biggest opening ever in Spain behind Shrek 2, The Matrix Reloaded and The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. Grossing a stunning $6.9 million (5.1 million) from 396 screens, Alexander topped Troy's $6.3 million.

France and Belgium were in between the U.K. and Spain. In France, Alexander recorded $3.9 million on 530 screens, while Belgium produced $572,195 from 46 screens. Troy didn't have a very big opening in either territory, but it was still ahead of Alexander, grossing $5.1 million from 743 screens in France.

Alexander played alright in Latin America. Opening in Colombia, the Oliver Stone epic grossed $249,000 from 50 screens, ranking second behind fellow opener National Treasure. It was better than Gladiator by 58% and Pearl Harbor by 41%. In Peru, it made $141,000 from 55 topped and beat Gladiator by 30%.

Overall, Alexander had an impressive showing, grossing $16.9 million on 3,000 screens in 35 territories for a $66.3 million total, nearly doubling its domestic haul and setting its sights on $100 million.

The Incredibles added $15.3 million over the weekend for a phenomenal $315.7 million total. Much of business came from strong holdovers. Its totals by nation are $14 million through its third weekend in Australia, $57.4 million through its eighth in the U.K., $21.4 million through its fifth in Germany and $39.4 million through its seventh in France.

Ocean's Twelve tumbled in most markets, but thanks to four strong opening territories the picture still managed $17.6 million from 5,200 prints in 54 countries for a $137 million total. The high drop-off rates were to be expected for all movies that played through the New Year's holiday weekend.

In South Korea, the all-star caper grossed $2.1 million from 150 screens. It couldn't match Ocean's Eleven in local currency, but that was because Eleven opened on the Independence Movement Holiday weekend. South Korea has provided huge openings as of late for Hollywood fare despite the supremacy of local movies over the market. Twelve's start topped traditionally more powerful pictures like Die Another Day, The Mummy and Mission: Impossible 2.

Ocean's Twelve also opened in Portugal where it grossed $719,700 from 70 prints over the weekend, topping the original by 38% in Euros and 109% in US$. The sequel easily ranked first in the market. Argentina's $500,900 from 80 prints was also good enough for first place. It topped Ocean's Eleven by 15% and outperformed Catch Me If You Can by 304%. Twelve was No. 1 as well in the Philippines, grossing $366,100 from 45 prints and beating Eleven by 4% with one less day of box office and Catch Me If You Can by 66%.

National Treasure passed the century mark, adding $13.5 million for a $102.9 million tally, powered by two No. 1 debuts in Belgium ($1 million on 72) and Hong Kong ($625,000 on 45).

Ray kicked off its international run with an excellent opening in Germany. From just 108 screens, the Ray Charles biopic mustered a mighty $845,348 (including $119,498 in previews) for the best per screen average in the market. Because of its limited release, it ranked No. 7, but opened above the debuts of After the Sunset and House of Flying Daggers. Comparatively, it was 28% better than Lost in Translation and 158% ahead of 21 Grams. Ray will open around the world over the next two months attempting to capitalize on the awards season. The next opening is Austria on Jan. 14, followed by U.K. and Italy on Jan. 21.

Mimicking Stateside, horror pictures and thrillers have had surprising successes in the international markets. Over the last four months, they have enjoyed large starts thanks in part to opening on traditionally poor weekends. Horror patrons seem to follow the movies anywhere, but the genre has appealed to other audiences as well due to lack of competition. After The Village's $142.5 million international run, smaller thrillers gained steam. The Forgotten kicked off with impressive debuts in all of Europe and Asia, leading to a $39,679,582 total (and counting). Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid followed suit with $32,715,808 (also still playing), along with a record-breaking premiere in India. Then Resident Evil: Apocalypse truly showed that horror movies have gained more appeal. The original Resident Evil grossed $62.3 million while its sequel jumped to $77 million (also still grossing).

The Grudge, Blade: Trinity and White Noise are continuing the trend. The Grudge rang up $6.1 million worth of business from just 1,664 screens in 14 markets for an early $32.8 million total. The horror story was No. 1 in Brazil, grossing $1.1 million on 213 screens and second in Italy with a very impressive $3.7 million on 327. The Italian start topped Red Dragon, Hollow Man and The Ring. In smaller territories, The Grudge was also stellar. In Norway, it opened at No. 1, grossing $408,402 on 30 screens. It was second in Finland, grossing $30,955 on 20, and third in the Netherlands, taking $742,076 on 71.

The Grudge has already had impressive runs in the U.K. ($14,417,632), Australia ($4.5 million) and Russia ($1.3 million). It still has almost 3/4 of the world to open in, including Sweden and Israel on Jan. 14 and Spain and Greece on Jan. 21.

Blade: Trinity continued its international rollout with huge success after impressive runs in Australia ($4,397,365) where it topped both its predecessors, the U.K. ($12,676,371), where it will pass both its predecessors, South Korea ($5,134,975), more than doubling both originals, and France ($4,566,560), where it will pass both its predecessors. Wesley Snipes' vampire action sequel opened in four countries over the weekend and scored $2,339,529 from 1,173 screens in 12 territories in total, lifting its gross to $32,574,923. It opened in first place in Denmark with $416,989 on 30 screens. It was also impressive in Greece, taking in $400,164 on 32, Israel, grossing $60,414 on 24, and in the Philippines, grossing $194,547 on just 10 screens.

White Noise opened day-and-date with the U.S. in the U.K. and claimed No. 1 with a surprising $3.34 million from 314 sites, taking the highest screen average of any movie in the market. The thriller debuted ahead of fellow opener Alexander and the expanding The Aviator as well as unseating The Incredibles. White Noise's start is in line with Open Water and Dawn of the Dead and tops What Lies Beneath and Shaun of the Dead.

Expanding from 1 screen to 285 in the U.K., The Aviator had a decent weekend. The Oscar hopeful grossed $2.2 million for a $2.97 million total. Recent award's contenders also have had trouble getting out of the gate, but end up with big totals. Chicago grossed only $3.2 million in its expanding weekend for a $3.87 million total at the time. It ended up with $26.3 million. A Beautiful Mind grossed only $1.8 million in its expansion, but finished with an $11.6 million total.

Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason had an outstanding No. 1 opening in Italy last weekend, grossing $4,444,474 from 351 screens. That is 107% bigger than the start for Bridget Jones's Diary in US$ and 30% ahead in Euros. It was Working Title's biggest opening weekend ever in Italy. Diary went on to gross $12.3 million, which is about where its sequel will likely end up. Holdovers accounted for the rest of The Edge of Reason's weekend take, which was $7,467,748 from 1,844 screens in 24 territories for a $187,887,073 total. With 10 more territories to go, it will cross $200 million. Next up is Malaysia on Jan. 13.

Meet the Fockers had a promising start in Mexico over the weekend, grossing $1,914,192 from 268 screens. That bested the original by 73% and topped recent comedy hits like 50 First Dates by 19%, American Pie 2 by 36% and Along Came Polly by 90%. The impressive debut may open up Latin America for Fockers, which is one place where predecessor Meet the Parents didn't excel. Overall, Fockers grossed $2,848,616 from 570 screens for a $19,628,973 total.

The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie had solid starts in Australia and New Zealand. Though in line with the U.S. premiere, they were surprising because no international territory has been good to the animated Nickelodeon comedy. In Australia, it grossed $1,247,007 from 236 screens, ranking fourth in the market. The opening was better than the Rugrats movies. New Zealand recorded $448,104 from 63 screens, which also beat the Rugrats movies.

Kung Fu Hustle added two markets over the weekend, which each notched solid openings. The action comedy opened best in Indonesia, grossing $270,688 from 42 screens, but also did well in the Philippines with $261,269 from 30 screens. Overall, it grossed $4,736,376 from 1,100 screens in 8 markets for an impressive $46,239,905 total. Key figures include Japan's $8,700,010 in two weeks and China's $17,305,783 in three.

Rank

Title

Weekend Gross

Theater Count

Territory Count

Total Gross

1

Ocean's Twelve

$17.6m

5,200

54

$137m

2

Alexander

$16.9m

3,000

35

$66.3m

3

The Incredibles

$15.3m

-

-

$315.7m

4

National Treasure

$13.5m

-

-

$102.9m

-

Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason

$7,467,748

1,844

24

$187,887,073

-

The Grudge

$6.1m

1,664

14

$32.8m

-

Kung Fu Hustle

$4,736,376

1,100

8

$46,239,905

-

Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events

$4,049,426

1,513

8

$40,264,920

-

The Polar Express

$3.8m

3,800

59

$109.5m

-

The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie (Excludes Colombia)

$3,373,080

869

7

$14,590,086

-

White Noise

$3.34m

314

1

$3.34m

-

Meet the Fockers

$2,848,616

570

4

$19,628,973

-

The Terminal

$2,575,187

278

2

$130,298,213

-

Blade: Trinity

$2,339,529

1,173

12

$32,574,923

-

The Aviator

$2.2m

285

1

$2.97m

-

Shrek 2

$1,933,338

285

3

$474.7m

-

After the Sunset

$1,290,832

538

6

$10,000,952

-

Shark Tale

$1,117,304

657

15

$159,689,860

-

Without a Paddle

$1,027,268

314

4

$6,696,416



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