Around the World Roundup: 'Spider-Man 3' Dominates Globe

by Conor Bresnan
Tobey Maguire in Spider-Man 3
May 7, 2007

Spinning around the globe and shattering the foreign opening record, Spider-Man 3 generated $230.5 million from 107 markets, blowing past former record holder The Da Vinci Code's $155 million debut. However, the results weren't as amazing as that overall number suggests. The superhero sequel had an unusual six-day weekend, giving it, in some territories, four more days than a traditional weekend. For instance in Japan, it made $26.6 million since opening but during the traditional 2-day weekend it nabbed $10.1 million from 807 screens.

Aside from the Middle East, though, Spider-Man 3 did not disappoint nor fail to lead a market. All time opening weekend records fell came in a hodgepodge of territories. Japan was one of them thanks to its six-day premiere, though all four Harry Potter movies had better two-day sessions (including an extra day of previews). Spider-Man 3 also broke China's record with a massive $7.3 million over four days ($4 million during the traditional 3-day frame), and topping all local pictures there was its most impressive accomplishment.

South Korea's $17.3 million was another all time high and bested last year's largest opening by an American picture (Mission: Impossible III) by 88 percent. Spider-Man 3 also nabbed all time highs in Russia ($7.7 million), where the record seems to fall two or three times a year, and the Ukraine ($793,019).

Spider-Man 3 repeated its predecessors' feats in Mexico by snatching the opening record, amassing $11.9 million from 930 screens over the three-day weekend. Brazil saw a new opening weekend benchmark too as the movie grossed $7.3 million from 869 screens. Most surprising was the new record set in Italy. Spider-Man 3's $14.9 million from 916 screens there topped Spider-Man 2's by more than $5 million and that picture opened during the more lucrative Fall season.

Records did not fall elsewhere even though Spider-Man 3 had more days of playing time. The picture failed top its predecessors in Australia, with a $7.7 million opening from 500 screens, and in Germany, with an $8.3 million four-day weekend ($13.7 million tally in its first six days).

In the United Kingdom, on the other hand, Spider-Man 3 crushed Spider-Man 2's $16 million debut with a humongous $23.6 million from 1,088 screens. France and Spain were also higher than its predecessors, with a fantastic $22.5 million over six days and $11.1 million over three, respectively. None of these were all time highs.

Spider-Man 3 captured more opening weekend records in Asia. In Singapore, it was the picture to finally dislodge The Lost World: Jurassic Park's ten-year-old record, bagging $2.6 million over six days. In India, Spider-Man 3 claimed the foreign movie record with $4.5 million from the highest screen total ever, 585. Over six days, the biggest openings ever were also posted in the Philippines ($3.7 million), Hong Kong ($3.7 million), Thailand ($3.5 million), Malaysia ($2.5 million), Taiwan (estimated $4.5 million) and Indonesia ($1.7 million over five days).

Other new industry best marks came out of Latin America. Argentina's $1.6 million from 202 screens was the largest ever in terms of local currency, while Colombia's $1.3 million from 121 and Peru's $951,553 from 67 were also new highs.

Other territories weren't as impressive as Spider-Man has never been as popular as other franchises in Europe (e.g. The Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter and Pirates of the Caribbean). Spider-Man 3 didn't even have the biggest opening of the year in Turkey with a $1.3 million gross from 163 prints, losing out to 300 and local title Maskeli Besler: Irak. The sequel didn't open above Casino Royale in the Netherlands with $1.7 million from 110 and did only half the business of Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest in Slovakia with $74,429 from 13.

Spider-Man 3 certainly dominated the international box office over the week, with distributor Sony reporting an 80 percent market share. The picture did not disappoint anywhere, yet with the bar set so high it seems it could have done even better. With six days of release in most markets, precipitous drops are in store next weekend.

Other movies tumbled over the weekend, but figures were largely unavailable due to the bank holiday in the U.K. Other than Spider-Man 3, no Hollywood movies entered new markets and results were soft across the board.

Spider-Man Special Briefing

Foreign Weekend Box Office Results
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