Around the World Roundup: 'Night' Envelops Holidays

by Conor Bresnan
Ben Stiller in Night at the Museum
January 3, 2007

The foreign box office was buoyant over the holidays, driven by strong holds for older pictures and big business for the period's sole new wide release, Night at the Museum.

Night at the Museum snared $47.3 million from 26 markets over New Year's weekend for a $58.1 million two-week tally. In the United Kingdom, the family comedy reaped a staggering $14.2 million from 486 screens, beating Borat as 2006's best debut for a comedy. The picture also dazzled in Mexico with $7.3 million from 927 screens, which was one of the ten best openings on record, and in Germany with $5.9 million from 852 screens. Australia's seven-day start of $5.8 million was only good enough for second place there, but in South Korea it eased six percent in its second weekend to $3.7 million for a $13.1 million total and is playing at the same pace as Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest.

Sliding past the century mark, Happy Feet grossed $20.5 million over the weekend, lifting its total to $114.2 million. Australia was the key market, where the computer-animated comedy drew $8.7 million in its first six days, which included its opening on Boxing Day, Australia's highest grossing day of the year. Happy Feet's traditional four-day debut outperformed The Incredibles, Madagascar and Ice Age: The Meltdown among past similar movies. Neighboring New Zealand was as potent with $870,000 in the movie's first six days.

Slipping to third overall, Eragon racked up $20 million in its third weekend for a $105.4 million tally. The fantasy's gross included two solid openings: Brazil's $1.5 million from 244 screens and Poland's $721,000.

The Holiday yielded $16 million from 40 territories, boosting its total to $70 million. Opening on Boxing Day in Australia opposite Happy Feet, The Holiday scored $3.8 million in six days keeping pace with past titles Something's Gotta Give and Love Actually. France's $2.4 million debut from 417 screens ranked third but was best among openers there, and the romantic comedy also continued to play well in the U.K., down 10 percent for a four-week tally of $20.2 million. The most surprising run, however, has been South Korea, which has contributed $7.4 million to The Holiday's till, or twice what Something's Gotta Give made there.

Grabbing an estimated $15.8 million from 70 territories, Casino Royale fell to fifth place and pushed its total up to $337 million. Over the holiday weekend, the James Bond picture played best in the U.K., grossing $2.8 million in its seventh weekend, up 40 percent for a phenomenal $94.7 million total. It surged 15 percent in Australia to $2.2 million for an excellent $17.2 million total, but has disappointed in South Korea, where it tumbled nearly 50 percent in its second weekend for a $5.5 million tally.

Deja Vu mustered an impressive $9.5 million over the weekend for a $49.4 million total and delivered two personal best openings for star Denzel Washington: Germany's $3.3 million and Austria's $305,000.

Curse of the Golden Flower blossomed across Asia. In its native China, the period piece made $25 million from 826 prints through Dec. 26, and it's on course to top Hero as the market's all time highest grossing movie. Other Asian openings occurred on Dec. 21 and grosses have been strong but not in China's league, including Hong Kong's $1.4 million, Malaysia's $381,000, Singapore's $960,600 and Taiwan's $1.5 million.

Meanwhile, Charlotte's Web flopped in most markets, including a dismal $341,938 debut from 333 screens in kid-friendly Mexico. The remake of the classic children's novel has just $119,714 in Denmark, $101,600 in Greece and $264,474 in New Zealand through two weeks. Australia has been the picture's best market with a decent $4.8 million, and the overall total stands at $8.4 million.

International Box Office Results

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