Around the World Roundup: 'Eragon' Claims Top Spot
by Conor Bresnan
December 18, 2006
|Ed Speleers and Jeremy Irons in Eragon|
The Christmas season was in full swing over the weekend with four movies grossing more than $10 million overseas. Leading the pack was Eragon thanks to the sheer scope of its nearly global day-and-date launch. The fantasy claimed $30.3 million from 76 territories but ranked first in less than half of them.
Spain was Eragon's best market at $4.2 million, which was just shy of King Kong on the same weekend last year, followed by Germany at $4.1 million and Mexico at $2.3 million. Eragon was solid elsewhere if unimpressive, including Australia ($1.6 million), Japan ($2.2 million) and Russia ($2.2 million).
In the United Kingdom, Eragon was a disappointment, opening to a fourth-place $2.7 million from 429 screens, which was in line with last year's box office letdown Zathura.
Falling to second place overall but holding the top spot in over 13 markets was Casino Royale. It tabulated $20.4 million over the weekend for a $279.7 million total, surpassing Die Another Day to become Bond's highest foreign grosser yet. Casino had two No. 1 debuts: Brazil's $1.3 million and Uruguay's $18,133. More impressive, though, was the picture's remarkable five-week totals in Denmark ($8.8 million), Germany ($35.7 million), Finland ($3.4 million) and Spain ($10.4 million). Meanwhile, in the U.K., it stayed in third place with a $2.9 million sixth-weekend for an $85.2 million total.
The Holiday expanded to 28 territories over the weekend, making $14 million for a $28.2 million tally. The romantic comedy topped both Love Actually and Bridget Jones's Diary in Germany ($2.6 million) and South Korea ($2.7 million). Other strong starts included Greece's $439,521, the Netherlands' $608,372 and Singapore's $259,375. The Holiday is positioned to hold well through the holiday season. In the U.K., for instance, it fell just 33 percent in its second weekend to $3.1 million for an $11.7 million total.
|Jude Law and Cameron Diaz in The Holiday|
Happy Feet tumbled by more than 50 percent over the weekend, grossing $13 million. The animated comedy recorded steep drops in most markets except the U.K., where it was down 26 percent for a $13.1 million total. Its two new markets both opened strongly; Greece with $545,000 and Israel with $141,000. With $60 million in the till, Happy Feet invades Russia, Hong Kong and South Korea next weekend.
Ranking fifth from one country alone, Curse of the Golden Flower drew $12.3 million from 826 prints in China. Zhang Yimou's $45 million period drama shattered that country's records for widest release and opening weekend gross, which was previously held by last year's The Promise at $9.6 million. Yimou claimed the opening record before with House of Flying Daggers' $7.8 million in 2004, while his Hero started with $6.8 million. Curse debuts in Hong Kong, Taiwan and select American cities next weekend.
Meanwhile, Deja Vu nabbed $9 million over the weekend, opening better than expected in France ($2 million) and Italy ($1.3 million). The U.K.'s $2.1 million and Russia's $750,000 were solid as well. With $22.8 million thus far, Deja Vu is trailing Denzel Washington's last movie Inside Man but has been better than Man on Fire.
Flushed Away bagged $8.2 million over the weekend, fueled by Latin America, for a $47 million total. The animated comedy took $1.1 million from 366 screens in Mexico as well as $772,849 in Brazil. It's been mediocre throughout its run, and the U.K. is easily its top market with $11.4 million.
In Australia, Charlotte's Web rebounded a bit from its modest debut a week ago, slipping only four percent to $941,334 from 257 screens for a $2.5 million total.
Also still playing in only one market was Clint Eastwood's Letters from Iwo Jima in Japan, where it eased 25 percent in its second weekend to $3.1 million. Tallying $12.1 million, the World War 2 drama remained in first place and is playing much better than Eastwood's counterpart movie, Flags of Our Fathers, thus far.
• International Box Office Results
NOTE: This report was updated after initial publication with new information on Curse of the Golden Flower.