Around the World Roundup: Potter Soars Past $300M, The Smiths Enter Japan and Italy

by Conor Bresnan
Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
December 7, 2005

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire continues to break barriers and records, raking in $94.8 million over the weekend from 57 markets. The boy wizard's tally stands at a massive $332.8 million.

The weekend's key openings were in Australia, France and South Korea. Like most nations before it, Australia's launch of $9.2 million from 552 prints was the biggest ever for distributor Warner Bros. The Harry Potter franchise's openings have successively grown Down Under with Goblet of Fire topping Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by three percent.

Goblet of Fire was hot in France with the market's second best launch ever, $19.9 million from 950 screens. It eclipsed Prisoner of Azkaban by 27 percent. Earlier this year, Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith had a similar boost over its predecessor, and, if Goblet plays out like Sith did, it would also be the highest grossing movie of its franchise.

Proving that the Harry Potter series is universal, Goblet of Fire continued its blistering pace with its debuts in Asia, Latin America and Africa. In South Korea, the picture grossed $6.4 million from 331 prints, the fourth biggest launch ever as well as the highest of the series. In Venezuela, it nabbed $529,000 from 96 screens, which ranked as the second biggest opening ever, outperforming the first two Potters by over 150 percent. Also setting the benchmark for the Harry Potter franchise was South Africa. There Goblet grossed $807,000 from 85 screens, surpassing Prisoner of Azkaban by 28 percent.

Although openings were strong, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire relied mainly on holdovers for business. Once again leading the way was the United Kingdom, where, in its third weekend of release, Goblet of Fire grossed $8.4 million for a $64 million total. In Japan, it fell just 18 percent in its second weekend, despite the debut of Mr. & Mrs. Smith. Goblet grossed $9.1 million over the weekend for a $30.5 million total. The Smiths also challenged Potter's second weekend in Italy, but Goblet responded well by grossing $5.1 million for a $17.8 million total.

Totals from all nations continued to climb to stunning levels. Some of the highlights are Germany's $44.6 million total after three weekends, Spain's $13.5 million after two, Brazil's $7.8 million after two, and Mexico's $16.9 million after three.

Jennifer Carpenter in The Exorcism of Emily Rose
Meanwhile, The Exorcism of Emily Rose opened well in 14 nations and held well in 37. Overall, the horror drama grossed $7.3 million for a $42.9 million total. Holdovers in Germany and the U.K. were the picture's strongest points. Rebounding in Germany from last weekend's torrential snowstorms, it grossed $1.3 million, a drop of 16 percent, for a $3.3 million total. In the U.K., it was down a moderate 31 percent to $1.3 million for a $4.8 million total. Openings ranged from Brazil's $841,182 on 191 screens to Uruguay's $14,000 on 6 screens, and all were solid for the genre, especially Turkey's $339,352 from 62 screens.

Chicken Little reentered the international arena after taking a couple weeks off to let Harry Potter join the field. The end-of-the-world comedy landed strongly in Italy, grossing $2.3 million to become the seventh largest animated opening ever. In Singapore, it posted the biggest animated opening ever with $625,000, and it also opened in the Philippines to $260,000.

Also making an international comeback was Mr. & Mrs. Smith, which hadn't opened in a new territory since October. The action comedy ended its foreign campaign with stops in Japan and Italy. Japan showed promise with a strong $5.2 million start from 418 screens. In Italy, it made $3.2 million, more than double of what Sin City and Batman Begins started with there. Smith's overall total climbed to $251 million.

Flightplan inched ever-closer to the century mark, adding $5.8 million for a $94.6 million total. Without any openings, the Jodie Foster thriller continued strong runs in the United Kingdom ($6 million), Spain ($7.6 million) and Australia ($5 million).

Amassing $5.7 million over the weekend thanks to key starts in Germany and Spain, Just Like Heaven improved its foreign tally to $10 million. Germany's third place opening yielded $1.2 million from 273 screens for a $4,245 screen average, which was the second highest of the Top 15. Reese Witherspoon's romantic comedy was heavenly in Spain, grossing $1.1 million from 207 screens. It also continued a strong run in the Asian markets with Taiwan being the latest success, where it snagged $313,177 from 46 screens.

Doom entered one of its final markets, the U.K. The video game adaptation had a solid fifth place start, grossing $1 million from 242 screens. Overall, it had a $1.7 million weekend for a $21.2 million total.

Charlize Theron
Aeon Flux had five day-and-date launches with the United States this weekend and all five were successful. The sci fi action picture was surprisingly large in Russia, notching $1 million from 240 screens. The market has become a sure bet for the genre with Doom being the most recent success story, grossing $3.4 million in its run. As expected Aeon Flux flexed its muscle in the Southeast Asian nations. Openings in Malaysia ($182,077 from 36 screens), Singapore ($206,541 from 26) and Thailand ($207,625 from 73) were all in high anticipated ranges.

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New MPAA Ratings Added
DAILY: Monday, 9/17 (40 tracked)
WEEKEND: Weekend Actuals, 'The Predator' #1
DAILY: Friday, 'The Predator' #1
DAILY: Thursday 9/13 (55 tracked)
WEEKLY: 'The Nun' Tops the Week with $66.87m
DAILY: Wednesday, 9/12 (43 tracked)
DAILY: Tuesday, 9/11 (47 tracked)