Around the World Roundup: 'Pursuit' Rises to the Top
by Conor Bresnan
February 5, 2007
|Will Smith and his son Jaden in The Persuit of Happyness|
Night at the Museum's five week reign ended as The Pursuit of Happyness topped the foreign box office over the weekend, grossing $16.3 million for a $71.1 million total. Among the movie's openings, Spain led the way with $2.5 million followed by France's $2.4 million and Brazil's $1.1 million. Each was good though below Hitch's debuts.
The Will Smith drama has been characterized by strong holds more than big openings. For instance, in Italy, Pursuit started with $4.7 million and, four weeks later, its tally has swelled to $17.7 million. This past weekend, it eased 17 percent in Japan to $2.4 million second weekend ($8.9 million total), while it was down 35 percent in the United Kingdom ($16.7 million total) and 26 percent in Austria ($696,466 total).
In second, Blood Diamond raked in $13.8 million over the weekend, pushing its total to $46 million. The adventure drama had a terrific debut in France, grossing $2.7 million from 459 prints and ranking first. Like Pursuit, Diamond demonstrated solid staying power, down 19 percent in the U.K. to $2.3 million, 20 percent in Germany to $1.3 million and 23 percent in Italy to $1.3 million—all second weekends.
Night at the Museum generated $13.5 million in third for a $212 million total. The family comedy's weekend was fueled by Italy's stellar $4.7 million debut from 471 screens, doubling Fun with Dick and Jane's start at the same time last year. In the U.K., though, Museum dove 87 percent after many exhibitors pulled it in protest of 20th Century Fox's plan to release the picture on DVD just thirteen weeks after its theatrical opening. Museum could have grossed $1 million or more over the weekend but instead earned $274,000 from 190 screens.
The international Top Five wasn't fully determined at publication time as many pictures had similar grosses. It appears that Rocky Balboa grabbed fourth place with $5.4 million for a $47.1 million total. The boxing drama entered no new markets and it has fallen quickly in holdovers, its weekend led by the U.K. ($1.7 million) and France ($1.5 million).
Fifth place looks like it went to Dreamgirls with $4.8 million from nine markets for a $9.3 million tally. The U.K. was the musical's stand out market at $2.6 million from 269 screens. Elsewhere, however, it floundered. It debuted to a mere $882,757 in Germany and $86,749 in South Africa, while it plummeted in Spain (down 48 percent) and Italy (down 71 percent for a meager $611,707 total).
Notes on a Scandal went head-to-head with Dreamgirls in the U.K. and narrowly lost. The drama earned $2.3 million from 300 screens in its first overseas territory.
Casino Royale ended its foreign campaign in China, grossing $5.5 million in its six-day debut at 468 screens. It was one of the ten best starts ever for a non-Chinese picture and helped push Casino's total to $415.7 million.
Also ending its international run was Casino's Sony stable mate Click. The Adam Sandler comedy entered South Korea, which has largely ignored the star's previous work, and delivered a decent $1.1 million from 152 screens to rank fourth. That debut, though, means the picture will probably narrowly miss the century mark as it has grossed $97.3 million to date.
• International Box Office Results