I’ve already discussed The Dark Knight‘s $130 million prospects. But Universal’s Mamma Mia! also opens domestically on July 18th, so expect one of the biggest 3-day weekends ever at the box office. The studio thinks this counter-programming from Playtone’s Tom Hanks and his producing partner Gary Goetzman will open strong at $25+ million. (I agree since keep seeing those ubiquitous ads and then can’t get that damn ABBA song out of my head.) After all, the pic is based on the musical that’s a global sensation that’s been seen by 30 million people since it debuted in London in 1999. But this is one of those rare times when it doesn’t matter what a pic makes stateside. Because Mamma Mia! has already blown the doors off overseas box office and looks to make $200M internationally. It opened gangbusters in Greece and the United Kingdom already and debuted in 11 more international markets this weekend, for an estimated $24M overseas weekend with a per screen average of $17,544. The U.K. opened the film at No. 1 with 34% market share for an estimated $13.2M, which makes it the biggest opening ever for a musical in the U.K. It is also Universal’s 4th biggest opening ever in the market, behind only Bridget Jones 2, Mr. Bean’s Holiday and King Kong. Australia opened No. 1 with $5.2M and 28% market share and also is the biggest debut ever for a musical. Scandinavia, the Middle East, and parts of Asia all had great numbers. In Greece, where the pic was filmed, Mamma Mia! opened last week to huge numbers for that country. Expectedly, as home to Abba, Sweden had an outstanding No. 1 opening. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that the pic is doing so well because ABBA is still huge around the world even if it was never that big in this country. (Although the Abba music in those Aussie films popular here, Muriel’s Wedding and Priscilla Queen Of The Desert, made the pics…) The Swedish pop group burst on the European scene by winning the Eurovision Song Contest and has sold over 400 million records. Even though ABBA last performed together in 1982, the group still sells 2M to 3M records each year. I’m really curious to see all of next weekend’s box office numbers roll in…
Is Next Weekend A Record-Breaker? Mamma Mia!
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