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Around-the-World Roundup: 'Persia' Perks Up Overseas

by Brandon Gray
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time
 

 
June 1, 2010

Despite a relatively tepid start domestically, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time saved some face at the foreign box office, raking in $61.6 million over the weekend (through Sunday) and growing its total to $90.1 million. The picture added another $7.6 million on Monday, which brings the overall total to $97.7 million in 13 days.

Prince of Persia was No. 1 overall for the weekend, and it topped 41 of its 47 markets. Relative to similar titles in the same countries through the same point in release, distributor Walt Disney Pictures claimed that Prince of Persia was 39 percent above National Treasure, but 15 percent below The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, 17 percent below The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian and 24 percent below Clash of the Titans (2010).

Russia was Prince of Persia's top-grossing market of the weekend with $9.2 million. Though it ranked second to Shrek Forever After's second weekend there, it was a 19 percent bigger start than Iron Man 2's launch from a month ago. China contributed an estimated $8.1 million, which was Disney's second biggest opening there behind Alice in Wonderland.

In India, Prince of Persia shined with an estimated $3.3 million, which was Disney's top-grossing start of all time there and the biggest of the year for a Western production. Decent openings were also posted in France ($6.1 million), South Korea ($4.3 million with 40 percent market share), Mexico ($4.4 million) and Australia ($3.2 million). Among holdovers, business improved by nine percent in the United Kingdom to $2.2 million ($5.6 million total), though other pictures had upticks there as well, and it was down 19 percent in Germany to $2.5 million ($7.4 million total).

With the advent of Prince of Persia, Walt Disney Pictures became the third studio of the year to cross the $1 billion mark at the foreign box office, joining 20th Century Fox and Warner Bros. This marks the 16th year in a row that Disney has passed that milestone, which is the industry's longest streak, and it took the least amount of time yet for the studio.

With $672.9 million in the till after a $5.1 million weekend, Alice in Wonderland (2010) is the main reason Disney hit $1 billion so quickly. Worldwide (domestic plus foreign), Alice reached $1 billion on Wednesday, and now it has eclipsed The Dark Knight to become the fifth highest-grossing picture of all time. Alice's worldwide total is now $1.006 billion, compared to Dark Knight's $1.002 billion.

Meanwhile, Sex and the City 2 posted solid business in its debut, slotting in at second place for the weekend. The sequel grossed $28 million on 3,705 screens in 17 countries (and its total grew to $31.8 million on Monday). The United Kingdom was its top draw with $9.4 million at 529 sites, which was 27 percent higher than Sex and the City. Germany was its next biggest market with $6.3 million ($8.3 million including previews), which exceeded the first Sex. Sex 2 held the top spot in 11 of its 17 countries, and, next weekend, it will strike France, Australia, Russia, Spain, Mexico and Japan.

Shrek Forever After drew $18.4 million at 2,039 locations in 15 territories, upping its total to $53.5 million. Russia was the animated sequel's stand-out market again. The movie fended off Prince of Persia with a burly $11.2 million second weekend, which was down 43 percent. With $38 million in 11 days, it will soon surpass Alice in Wonderland to become Russia's second-biggest movie of the year behind Avatar. What's more, it has already dwarfed all previous Shrek movies: Shrek the Third was the previous franchise high there with $23 million.

Robin Hood fell to fourth place with $17.6 million in 58 territories, though it had no new openings to bolster business. With $155 million in the till, the Medieval epic has six more countries to look forward to, including China on June 11.

Iron Man 2 rounded out the Top Five with $6.9 million in 61 territories, improving its total to $281.8 million (compared to the first movie's $266.7 million final gross). How to Train Your Dragon was close behind with $6.5 million in 41 countries, increasing its sum to $244.6 million. Further down, A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010) packed $4.1 million in 41 markets. With a $34.3 million tally, it has made more than Friday the 13th (2009), and it will haunt Japan on June 25. Clash of the Titans added $3.5 million in 50 markets, lifting its total to a mighty $320 million. Most of its weekend business came from Brazil, where it ranked first for the second weekend a row with $2.7 million.

Domestic Weekend Report:
'Prince,' 'Sex' Deserted as 'Shrek' Leads Weak Memorial Weekend

Related Story:
'Alice' Is a Billionaire

Last Weekend's Around-the-World Roundup:
'Robin Hood' Holds Onto Top Spot

Related Chart:
All-Time Worldwide



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