UPDATE Monday, 5:51 PM: Actuals are in and Lionsgate’s second in the franchise Insurgent took a higher than expected $1.3M overall, bringing it tally to $48.3M (up from the estimated $47M). So worldwide, it just tips the $100M mark, according to Lionsgate. The final numbers also revealed that Disney’s Cinderella brought $1.5M more to the dance than expected this weekend with $42.6M, up from the estimated $41.1M. More news for the studio as China overtook Japan to become the biggest territory on its animated Big Hero 6. Meanwhile Fox/DreamWorks’ animated fantasy film Home also ended the weekend with a better than anticipated gross, $20.1M, up $1M from its previous estimate. And, the three-time Oscar winning drama Whiplash took No. 1 in South Korea which is surprising, given the territory’s penchant for tentpole actioners. Also Fifty Shades of Grey is just a whip away from grossing $400M international. All numbers have been updated below. Read on:
UPDATE, Sunday, 7:19 PM PT: The international box office was up a little over 5% on last weekend’s frame across the Top 10 studio titles. Repping the lion’s share were Lionsgate’s newcomer Insurgent ($48.3M), Disney’s 2nd frame enchantress Cinderella ($42.6M), and DreamWorks Animation’s Home ($20.1M).
Insurgent is now ahead of last year’s Divergent when based on the same markets, although Divergent’s release was more spread out, initially opening in just 18 versus Insurgent’s 76 this weekend. The sequel still notably has China, Japan, Korea and Spain to release. Cinderella held well in Europe and Asia, with a 45% drop in China and a $2.5M bow in a testosterone-heavy Korean marketplace. Cinderella travels to the UK next week, leaving this frame open for Fox release Home, which set a non-franchise UK opening record for DWA. As Easter approaches, the UK is ripe for family fare after the strong perfs of local titles Paddington and Shaun The Sheep.
Also in the UK, The Gunman suffered a similar fate to the U.S., hitting the market a week after Run All Night and running into action fatigue (if not the R-rated sort since both of those films were open to anyone over 15 in the UK). Full international grosses are not available as individual distributors have not yet reported.
In all this frame, the international box office was up about 29% on the similar period in 2014 for the Top 10 studio releases. At the time, Need For Speed was the top play, followed by 300: Rise Of An Empire and Noah, which had just set sail in Mexico and Korea.
Next week, the major expansion will come from Home which sets up house in a further 55 markets including Germany and Mexico, along with North America. The importance of international on DWA movies is evidenced by several recent titles. Penguins Of Madagascar has made 77% of its box office abroad and is still in release; How To Train Your Dragon 2 did 71% of its business offshore and Mr Peabody & Sherman barked up 60% overseas. The most recent DWA comp on Home in terms of release corridor is The Croods whose biggest offshore markets ended up to be China ($63M+) and the UK ($43M+). In the UK, Home’s opening is already 112% of that film’s start in 2013. China is likely to bow in April (The Croods was granted an extended run there beyond the normal four weeks after it opened on April 20, 2013).
See below the original post for a closer look at some key markets and their local language scene. We’ll be back with actuals on Monday.
PREVIOUS, Sunday 1:59 PM PT: HIGHLIGHTS: Sunday Estimates showed Insurgent (LG) outpacing Divergent by 33% with a $47M bow; Home (FOX/DWA) estimated to be $19M+ in just 9 markets; Cinderella (DIS) at $253.14M global; The Gunman (VAR) jams; Taken 3 (FOX) takes China while Big Hero 6 (DIS) grows there; Kingsman: The Secret Service (FOX) at $40M in Korea; More…
Now for the Monday actuals: In its global debut, The Divergent Series: Insurgent led the international weekend with a $48.3M bow in 76 markets, 63 of which are No. 1 starts. That fell pretty well in line with expectations, while local currency growth was particularly strong in places like France and Brazil. Perhaps not quite so expected, a big winner this frame was DreamWorks Animation’s Home, the 3D buddy comedy that blasted off to over $20M in just 10 markets, and far outpaced all comers in the UK. See below for more on those and other new studio releases and holdovers. I’ll be back with more on local titles and a look ahead.
Lionsgate’s Insurgent made a better than anticipated $48.3M in 76 markets in this frame’s overseas debut. Although Divergent had a different release pattern, when comparing the individual market bows, Insurgent is up about 33% on that film’s opening on a dollar basis; a good result considering local currency devaluations around the globe. The Robert Schwentke-directed pic’s best play was France with $6M followed by the UK at $4.4M and Brazil at $4.2M. Also, Australia took in $3.2M, Germany $1.8M and Mexico $3.7M. The major territories not to have bowed yet include China, Korea, Japan and Spain. For more on the YA movie’s first weekend, see my earlier separate story.
There’s welcome news for DreamWorks Animation this weekend as 3D buddy comedy Home landed a final fantastic $20.1M in 10 markets to kick off its global rollout. This comes ahead of a big 55-territory expansion (including in North America) next weekend. Taking advantage of a key opening in the UK release calendar, where Cinderella doesn’t come to the ball until next weekend, the Fox release found an especially warm welcome at $9.12M on 1,183 screens for the No. 1 slot. The performance makes it the biggest ever DWA opener in the market outside of the Shrek franchise, per Fox. By way of comparison, it was 12% higher than The Croods and 63% bigger than Despicable Me.
The Tim Johnson-directed tale is based on Adam Rex’s 2007 children’s book, The True Meaning of Smekday, about an alien who crash lands on Earth and hooks up with a resourceful girl who is trying to reunite with her mother. It features the voices of Jim Parsons, Rihanna, Jennifer Lopez and Steve Martin. The emotional aspects of the story are key ingredients to its appeal. In the UK, the Fox marketing team kicked off Home‘s campaign in theaters and on TV at Christmas, as well as on buses and in shopping centers. Lopez’s Feel The Light track has been extensively pushed and Parsons helped get the word out by appearing on the One Show and Blue Peter. A Mother’s Day preview last weekend was also very popular in a market that hasn’t seen any significant new family fare since Shaun The Sheep in early February.
Outside the UK, Home saw No. 1s in Russia ($5.17M from 2,157) and Spain ($2.24M from 726), besting The Croods in the former and Rio and Lego in the latter. Australia ($2.42M from 247) and Norway ($545K from 196) both saw No. 2 bows behind Insurgent. It also bowed in New Zealand with $237K from 108 dates.
Sean Penn-starrer The Gunman earned an estimated $900K in eight markets this session. Notably, the UK is in line for a $600K debut which would place it 6th in the market, which is slow for this type of action film – much as it was for Run All Night last week, although that pic did double the business at open. The Gunman also suffered from too many R-rated action films stepping on each others’ toes domestically, and reviews have not been kind. It was clearly designed to have international appeal given the mix of French director Pierre Morel (who helmed the first Taken); UK actors Ray Winstone, Mark Rylance and Idris Elba; Spain’s Javier Bardem; and Italian actress Jasmine Trinca. The Gunman was a huge pre-seller for Studiocanal in Cannes a couple of years back and will continue to roll out over the next few months.
Cinderella added 14 international territories in her second frame, including Korea and Argentina, to take the total to 45 markets repping about 69% of the glass-slippered footprint. The offshore weekend take was $42.6M, bringing the belle of the ball to $132.7M overseas. Added to the domestic cume, the global box office on Disney’s live-action update is $255.3M. Cinderella kicks off her shoes in France, Spain, the UK, Australia and Brazil next frame, and Japan releases in late April.
The Korea bow for Kenneth Branagh’s fairy tale was an estimated $2.5M, 38% ahead of the opening for its closest comp, Oz: The Great And Powerful, and 29% behind the opening of Maleficent, but not enough to take it to No. 1 in the market. That distinction right now looks like it belongs to Whiplash followed by Fox’s Kingsman: The Secret Service (confirmation on that coming tomorrow). Argentina was a No. 1 start an estimated $1.2M which was 70% above Oz and falls ahead of holidays there tomorrow and Tuesday. Colombia also opened at No. 1 with $900K. Cinderella was the top Western opener in India, ahead of both Oz and Maleficent with 500K.
Notable holdovers include Italy where Cinderella is something of a phenomenon at an estimated cume to date of $11.1M, already surpassing the lifetime of Oz and tracking ahead of Maleficent, which finished its run in the Boot with $19M. This weekend, it added $4.1M, outpacing newcomer Insurgent. The regional drop in Europe was 32%, with Germany also remaining enchanted at -28%. The cume in the market that saw a splashy premiere during the Berlin Film Festival is $3.9M.
China is the top offshore market with $53.1M after a 45% drop in frame 2. It is now the 2nd highest-grossing Disney Live Action release there ever behind Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. Across Asia, holds were very strong in Singapore (-13%), Malaysia (-24%), the Philippines (-26%) and Taiwan (-40%). In the Philippines, Cinderella has also become the second largest Disney Live Action release ever, behind only Maleficent.
Staying with Asia, Liam Neeson actioner Taken 3 finally unleashed its special skills in China this weekend with an $17.7M gross on 4,183 screens. That was the lifetime of the previous film in the franchise in the Middle Kingdom. The original (helmed by The Gunman’s Pierre Morel) earned $2M there in 2008. Taken 3’s total offshore cume is $223.9M.
Fox’s Kingsman: The Secret Service continues regal operations overseas – especially in Korea where it has now achieved a $39.9M cume and maintained the No. 2 spot locally. In total its 8th overseas frame spied $8.25M in 68 markets and on 4,151 screens. The international cume is $180.9M. Notably, Korea added $2.72M for a 17% drop and Germany was $1.2M, down 25% from opening. Colin Firth points his umbrella towards China on March 27.
Will Smith is still pulling international audiences with Warner Bros’ Focus. The con artist comedy added $7.9M with over 1.4M admissions at 4,750 screens in 64 territories. That takes the international cume to $71.1M versus the domestic total of $49.3M. Brazil held well in the face of Insurgent with an estimated $1.15M. Cume there is $3.2M. The UK leads for Focus with $10M total. France and Spain bow this week.
As it continues its run in China, Disney’s Oscar winner Big Hero 6 now has an estimated cume of $77M and on Monday surpassed Japan and its $76.2M gross. It’s now the 2nd highest grossing animated release of all-time in the Middle Kingdom behind Kung Fu Panda 2. In all this frame, Baymax embraced another $6.6M ($5.6M from China) to lift the international cume to $424M and the global take to $646M. The leggy animation is in its 22nd overseas weekend and is currently playing in 20 territories.
There were no key market openings for Sony’s Chappie, which added $5.1M in 69 territories. The overseas total is now $43.3M.
While Taken 3 was taking China, Liam Neeson could also be found in Run All Night in 23 other markets. The crime drama awoke a further $5.1M for a Warner Bros cume of $15.6M after two sessions. In a competitive scenario, Korea debuted to $1.3M from 179k admissions at 411 dates, and Australia set off with $581K and 58K admissions from 175 screens. In holdovers, France has a $2.1M total and the UK is at $2.5M. The action pic from Jaume Collet-Serra continues rolling out in April and May.
American Sniper fired up another $5M on 3,215 screens in 52 markets this weekend, notably France which earned $1.2M in its 5th frame. Clint Eastwood’s drama is still playing on a large number of screens for this market (742) where competition for real estate is fierce. The cume in France is $20.9M, making it the No. 2 territory behind Italy. Germany now has a $9.9M cume and the overseas total is $184.2M.
Bondage blockbuster Fifty Shades Of Grey scored another $4.4M from international playrooms in 60 territories. The offshore cume is $394.6M with $558.5M worldwide. Fifty Shades has become Universal’s 8th highest grossing film ever worldwide behind Jurassic Park ($1.043B), Despicable Me 2 ($975.2M), ET ($798.7M), Fast & Furious 6 ($789M), Fast Five ($630M), The Lost World ($624.9M) and Mamma Mia! ($606.1M). It is also the highest-grossing Universal film of all time in 15 territories including Brazil, France and Italy.
Fox Searchlight’s The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel rang up a further $3.19M from 2,215 screens in 33 markets. After four weeks of release, the offshore total is $34.65M. The top market UK crossed $20.1M this frame to bring the cume for Judi Dench, Maggie Smith, Bill Nighy and company to $20.3M. Australia crossed $10M at $10.04M. The pensioners’ paradise rolls into Spain, Finland, Norway and Greece next weekend.
Ahead of its UK opening next session, Paramount’s The Spongebob Movie: Sponge Out Of Water added $3.6M from 3,625 locations in 48 territories this frame. Breakdowns were not provided, but the international total for the Bikini Bottom band is $121.5M.
Disney’s Into The Woods is still the top Western film in Japan where it’s enjoying a strong run. Dropping 39%, its cume is now $9.5M. The musical added $2.2M total this session and has an international cume of $71.3M. It still has yet to open in five markets in Scandanavia and Italy.
Speaking of Japan, Night At The Museum: Secret Of The Tomb opened its doors there to $2.7M. The Fox comedy opened at the same level as Oz, The Great And Powerful. The studio is anticipating continued strong results in Japan with school holidays running for the next two weeks.
Jennifer Lopez thriller The Boy Next Door opened in another 10 territories this weekend, adding $2.4M. The cume on the Universal movie that’s produced by Jason Blum is $8M. Germany was the top opener with $699K at 283 dates. There are 10 markets to go including Brazil and Russia.
Jupiter Ascending lifted another $1.1M per Warner Bros’ estimates, taking the cume to $130.6M. China is still far and away the best play at $45.3M; Japan is up on March 28.
Rounding out the studio holdovers, Seventh Son continued its fantasy play with an estimated $825K in 13 territories with a $67.1M total for Universal, $92.6M including the Legendary East release in China. It next releases in the UK on March 27. The Theory Of Everything added $798K for Universal in 42 territories, taking the cume to $83.2M; Fox Searchlight’s Oscar winner Birdman flapped up another $806K in 21 markets for an international total of $57.12M. The Penguins Of Madagascar are still strongly perched in Venezuela with a further $602K for an $11.5M cume after six weeks; the gang’s offshore total is now $287M.
KEY MARKETS & LOCAL TITLES
China/Hong Kong road movie Lost And Love entered the Rentrak chart this week with $16.2M. From novelist and screenwriter Sanyuan Peng in her directing debut, it stars Andy Lau and Jing Boran. The drama is based on real-life events and sees Lau as a farmer who searched for his abducted son for 14 years. China Lion also released this weekend in the U.S. Taken 3 brought its special skills to China this frame, besting the entire run of the franchise’s previous film with an $18M bow. Next week, China gets Kingsman: The Secret Service along with local rom-coms Bright Wedding and Rookie, and actioner 10,000 Years Later.
Kingsman is continuing its royal run in Korea where it has now hit $39.9M, making it the year’s top grosser in the market. Last week, local title The Deal (aka Murder Request), was the No. 1 film with $3.9M in its opening. According to industry data this week, the No. 1 film is Damien Chazelle’s Oscar winning Whiplash with about $3M. Per Rentrak, the movie now has a $20M overseas cume. Next week, Twenty, a comedy that follows the love lives of three twenty-year-old guys releases on March 25. This is the second directorial outing from Lee Byeong-Hun, who wrote recent hits Tazza: The Hidden Card and Love Forecast.
Japan, where Into The Woods was again the No. 1 Western movie, and where Night At The Museum: Secret Of The Tomb opened well this frame, will be the last international market for Jupiter Ascending when it bows this week. The Wachowskis’ expensive sci-fi title has done the bulk of its business in China where it now has a cume of $45.3M. That’s well above 2013’s Cloud Atlas. But Japan was very soft on Cloud with about $1.5M, and also bowing late compared to the rest of the world. Jupiter Ascending opens in Japan on March 28.
In France, Insurgent scored the 4th best opening of the year on Wednesday. The sequel was up a fantastic 71% on a dollar basis versus Divergent and saw a 122% increase in local currency terms. This was Divergent‘s biggest overseas market last year where former Summit part-owner, SND, releases. Opening behind Insurgent was local title, Un Homme Idéal with Yves Saint Laurent’s Pierre Niney. The thriller directed by Yann Gozlan sets Niney as an aspiring writer who bides his time working for his uncle’s moving company. When he discovers a manuscript at the home of a recently deceased man, he signs his name to it and becomes the new chouchou of the French literary scene — but the pressure is on to turn in a second book, thrusting the young man into a criminal spiral as he tries to keep his secret.
Local titles have been performing well in Germany of late, especially for Warner Bros which has had recent hits in Til Schweiger’s Honig Im Kopf and Anita Decker’s Traumfrauen. Next session, Warner Bros brings The Nanny to the party. From consistent box office draw, Matthias Schweighofer, the comedy sees a construction executive hire a nanny who, unbeknownst to him, is plotting to sabotage his latest project. Schweighofer, who, like Schweiger, is a multi-hyphenate, wrote, directs, produces and stars in the film. His previous hits include last year’s Vaterfreuden and Fox’s Schlussmacher.