3RD UPDATE, TUESDAY, 4PM: Fifty Shades of Grey is now counting an overseas bow of $173.6M through Monday. Updates for Universal, Warner Bros., Lionsgate and Fox have been made below.
2ND UPDATE, MONDAY, 10:45 AM PT: Universal’s Fifty Shades Of Grey is coming in slightly lower with an international bow of $156M (for Wednesday through Sunday). However, that’s still a February record. The film ranks as Universal’s second-biggest foreign bow behind Fast & Furious 6 which made $160.3M in 2013. Updated territory reports will be reported by the studio tomorrow. Here’s a further breakdown of how Fifty Shades titillated foreign moviegoers this weekend.
UPDATE, SUNDAY, 6:30 PM PT: With Fifty Shades Of Grey scoring $158M in green, the international frame was up some 96% compared to last week across the Top 10 studio titles. In comparison to last year at this time, Robocop was the No. 1 movie abroad with a $35M collar.
Fifty Shades was huge in Europe over the five-day where it was the best debut since Transformers 4 last summer. Latin America, which some expected to be soft, performed strongly as Valentine’s Day dovetailed smartly and social media activity was high. Asia is a trickier play with Indonesia and Malaysia opting out of releasing the film, and Japan modest given lower book sales. The three markets where Fifty Shades was not No. 1 in its opening frame were in the region — and it was Fox’s Kingsman: The Secret Service that punched higher in those.
There are still five more territories to release for Universal. They include Korea on February 26 and the UAE on March 5. In the meantime, next weekend is relatively open with no major debuts outside of China which has a host of new local titles to ring in the New Year. Expanding significantly in major territories are Kingsman, American Sniper and The Spongebob Movie: Sponge Out Of Water.
See below the original post for notes on local titles in some key markets. Actuals will be updated Monday and Tuesday.
PREVIOUS, SUNDAY 2:01 PM PT: The international markets sent Fifty Shades Of Grey a $158M valentine in its debut frame, setting an all-time record for an R-rated film, many February debut highs and bringing Universal a series of its own studio milestones. It was no secret the racy title would dominate international play this weekend, and as such, there were no other wide releases. However, Fox’s Kingsman: The Secret Service pounced on top of Mr Grey in some Asian markets. Fifty Shades was No. 1 in 54 of its 58 debuts — the three hold-outs were Singapore, Hong Kong and Thailand where Matthew Vaughn’s spy movie threw a kink in the works.
In other counterprogramming, kid/family films like The Spongebob Movie: Sponge Out Of Water, Big Hero 6 and Night At The Museum: Secret Of The Tomb continued to draw as school holidays tee up in many parts of Europe.
Elsewhere, notable highlights include figures out of China. The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies has become Warner Bros’ biggest grosser ever in the Middle Kingdom with $122.1M; The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 has bested its predecessors as its release continues there; and local pic Somewhere Only We Know was the No. 2 movie internationally this frame with $30M in four market debuts, including North America.
Below is a rundown of the international scene with key market breakdowns to come later.
Fifty Shades Of Grey opened to an estimated $158M in 58 markets over the five-day international frame. Of all overseas moviegoers, 60% opted for the bondage book adaptation from Universal and Focus Features. With a three-day domestic gross estimated at $81.7M, the worldwide opening weekend is $239.7M. Among records, it is the biggest opening weekend ever for an R-rated film internationally; the biggest international opening of 2015; and Universal’s 2nd-biggest international weekend ever. The top offshore market was the UK ($20.8M), where it has a restrictive 18 rating, and is the biggest February start of all time and the studio’s best opening weekend ever. For a full look at Fifty Shades overseas, see my report from earlier today.
Fox’s Kingsman: The Secret Service spied $23m from 4,844 screens in 39 markets this weekend taking its cume to $43.8M. The Colin Firth-starrer was on top of Fifty Shades Of Grey in Singapore, Hong Kong, and Thailand, strong action markets where it opened No. 1 in each. Singapore was worth $956K from 58 screens, 30% above comps Sherlock Holmes and Now You See Me. Hong Kong generated $936K at 102 dates, 25% bigger than Fifty Shades, and Thailand scored $919K from 240, 65% over Sherlock Holmes at its bow.
Kingsman also notably opened in Korea, Russia and Holland. In Korea, its top start this frame, the thriller earned $5.376M on 635 screens and was the top MPA title in the market. In Russia, it tapped $3.6M at 1,770, falling in line behind Fifty Shades, and notably debuting 100% higher than X-Men: First Class. The UK dropped 28% to $2.47M for a $16.7M cume. Australia was also down just 28% and similarly earned $2.4M for a $7.1M cume. Kingsman expands in 24 new markets next weekend.
Jupiter Ascending dropped about 54% in its 2nd frame, grossing an estimated $16.1M from 8,640 screens in 65 markets. The international cume is now $61.4M. The Wachowskis’ sci-fi actioner opened day-and-date last weekend, with no additional territories this session. There were strong holdovers in several of the markets. The top was Russia with $1.7M for a $7.6M cume, followed by France at $1.7M and a $5M total. Other markets breakdown thusly: the UK ($1.3M/$4.5M cume), Germany ($1.1M/$3.6M cume), Brazil ($1M/$3.9M cume), Mexico ($957K/$3.2M), and the Philippines ($701K/$1.7M cume). The latter market, where Fifty Shades Of Grey opened especially strong, only saw a 20% dip for Jupiter. Going forward, there are still some markets to open including Australia, China and Japan. China is expected to be the biggest play for the Warner Bros/Village Roadshow title.
The 3rd frame for The Spongebob Movie: Sponge Out Of Water logged $13.5M from 4,206 locations in 29 territories. Spongebob dove into four new markets this frame for an offshore cume of $46.3M. In Russia, Spongebob was No. 2 behind Fifty Shades, playing at 900 sites and delivering $3.1M — 14% ahead of Big Hero 6’s opening, per Paramount. Brazil was the top holdover with $2.6M from 469 dates for a No. 2 ranking and a cume of $8.5M. The Bikini Bottom-dweller had a 3rd Mexican frame worth $1.6M from 600 locations and a total $13.5M. In Spain, the Paul Tibbitt-helmed pic soaked up $1.1M at 298 sites. Its 2nd weekend was down 47% bringing the cume to $3.4M and retaining the No. 2 spot. Spongebob’s next bows are in France and Korea on February 18, and Germany on February 19.
Big Hero 6 was welcomed in France, Belgium and the Netherlands this frame and has only China to go on February 28. As France heads into school holidays, $3.1M worth of auds embraced the heart-warming toon. The UK held well, down 32% for the third No. 2 slot in a row. Germany was down 31% and Japan was off 24%, maintaining the No. 2 slot with a current total of $70.4M there. In Korea, Big Hero 6 fought off three new animated releases to retain the No. 1 spot among cartoons for the 4th consecutive week. Across all markets, Baymax and Hiro earned $9.2M, taking the international above the $300M mark to $301.8M. The global cume on the Disney Animation title is now $521.1M.
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 is spreading its wings in China. With an estimated 196M Rmb in its first eight days of release, the penultimate film in the trilogy is looking at $35.4M thus far. That’s a big improvement on the previous installments in the Middle Kingdom where the series has not proven as hot as elsewhere. Both the first Hunger Games and last year’s Catching Fire did about $28M in their lifetimes. Mockingjay has roughly another three weeks to keep filling its quiver. Total Mockingjay Part 1 weekend haul is $5.5M raising its overseas total to $414.96M. Worldwide, the film is counting $751.15M.
Taken 3 skillfully added $6.8M from 4,134 screens in 50 markets. Mexico was the top Fox holdover with $1M at No. 3 on 787 screens. The cume there is $9.2M – 50% bigger than Taken 2. Italy opened to $993K on 266 screens taking the international total to $192.4M. Taken 3 is poised to handily pass $200M with upcoming releases in Venezuela on March 6 and China on March 20.
Night At The Museum: Secret Of The Tomb awakened $5.83M on 2,118 screens in 40 markets. Holds look positively historic with Denmark up 60% over opening weekend for a $571K cume, France down only 3% ($5.8M cume), Venezuela down 21% ($5.58M cume), and Belgium down 18% ($724K cume). Norway opened to $227K, more than two times the previous installment in the Fox franchise. The international cume is $222.4M with February school holidays beginning to roll out across many European markets.
Fox and DreamWorks Animation’s Penguins Of Madagascar stealthily picked up $4.16M from 1,847 screens in 43 markets with excellent openings in Venezuela ($1.67M) and Taiwan ($439K). The overseas total is now $267.2M. Hong Kong and Thailand release next weekend.
The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies has become Warner Bros’ highest-grossing title ever in China with $122.1M (760 Rmb). The Middle Earth tale is also the No. 6 MPA movie of all time in the Middle Kingdom. Of a total $4M this frame in 29 offshore markets, Five Armies grossed $3.5M in China. The international cume for the series last installment is $697.6M.
American Sniper was just behind The Hobbit with an estimated $3.9M from 1,520 screens in 31 zones. With $22.9M, Italy remains the top play for the Oscar nominee from Clint Eastwood. The record-breaker for the helmer now has an international cume of $86.6M. The film is still to target France, Brazil, Mexico, Spain and Japan later this week. Germany opens February 26.
After scooping the Bafta for Best Actor and Best British Film, The Theory Of Everything has added an estimated $3.4M in 41 territories for a total of $65.3M. Holdover results are strong, unsurprisingly in the UK where it placed No. 7 in week seven with $771K for a 45-day total of $28.8M. Combined with the domestic total of $33.3M, the worldwide cume is $98.6M which will pass $100M this week.
Birdman flapped up $2.55M from 1,529 screens in 46 markets. The Oscar contender held well across all markets, including Italy (-20%/$2.1M cume), Germany (-30%/$2.17M cume), Brazil (-35%/$1.05M cume), and Spain (-36%/$4M cume). The international total is $35.7M ahead of opens in 12 more markets through April, including France, Korea, and Japan.
Playing in 13 territories, The Interview grossed an estimated $1.6M on 1,215 screens this weekend, giving the controversial comedy an overseas cume of $5.2M. Australia opened at No. 5 with $470K on 193 screens. Germany was the top holdover after opening February 5 with $440K this frame for a to-date total of $1.5M. Rounding things off at a total 14 theatrical markets next week is New Zealand.
Annie is still singing away in 28 international territories. The updated musical grossed an estimated $1.5M on 1,806 screens for a $40.4M cume. Of that, Sony Pictures Releasing International’s portion is $34.8M and Village Roadshow’s is $5.6M. Brazil opened to $85K on 86 screens and Annie warbled her way to $65K on 39 screens in Portugal. Japan and Spain had small drops, 38% and 39%, respectively, for cumes of $9M and $2.4M. France opens February 25 and Russia debuts March 19.
After resurfacing to enter their final market, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles added $1.3M in Japan at 331 locations. The Paramount actioner retained the No. 1 spot for a 2nd consecutive weekend and brought the local total to $5.7M. The international cume is $290.9M.
Elsewhere, Angelina Jolie’s Unbroken added $1M in 44 Universal territories in the frame. The offshore total is now $44.8M. Legendary’s Seventh Son, which Universal is releasing, conjured $730K in 27 territories for a total of $58.7M, $84.2M including the China release through Legendary East. Legendary’s Blackhat now has a $9.1M cume after adding $300K in 28 Universal territories. Also adding $444K was Jennifer Lopez-starrer The Boy Next Door in 14 territories for an early international total of $2.9M via Universal. Major markets are teed up for the end of February. Finally, Paramount and Michael Bay’s Project Almanac opened the book on a further $340K from 1,162 locations in 11 markets. The international total is now $4.1M.
Key Market Notes
Korea welcomed Kingsman: The Secret Service this frame with $5.4M making it the top U.S. title in the market. The overall winner was local pic Detective K: Secret Of The Lost Island from director Kim Suk-Yoon which grossed $6.2M over the weekend for a $7M total after bowing on February 11. The period comedy/adventure sees a detective attempting to track down those responsible for circulating massive amounts of counterfeit silver. This is a sequel to 2011’s Detective K: Secret Of Virtuous Widow which made about $32M. Fifty Shades Of Grey lands in Korea on February 26.
China‘s New Year comes February 19 meaning Sunday was a work day in anticipation of celebrations and vacations this week. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1, however, had a strong frame, besting the previous two franchise installments with an estimated $35.4M to date. The final Hobbit also set a record for Warner Bros with $122.1M making it the top-grossing WB title ever in the market. But it was local pic, Somwhere Only We Know, which went day-and-date with the U.S. and scored $30M across four markets, $335K in the U.S. The animated Boonie Bears: Mystical Winter was also in the international chart again this week with $3.8M for a cume of $37M.
Next week sees the Middle Kingdom get very crowded with local titles. Among them: big-budget actioner Dragon Blade with Jackie Chan, John Cusack and Adrien Brody; fantasy/love story Snow Girl And The Dark Crystal; Chow Yun Fat-starrer From Vegas To Macau II; the sequel to 2014’s smash reality TV transfer, Dad, Where Are We Going? 2; and Jean-Jacques Annaud’s Franco-Chinese co-production, Wolf Totem. Disney’s Big Hero 6 will be the next big Hollywood movie to bow on February 28.
In Europe, Fifty Shades had the best opening since Transformers: Age Of Extinction and beat out Interstellar and Hunger Games, each of which released at a time when the euro was stronger. In the UK, it set a record as Universal’s biggest opening weekend ever, the biggest February opening weekend ever, the biggest opening weekend for an 18-rated or 15-rated film and is now the 9th biggest opening weekend of all time. Meanwhile, Studiocanal’s animated Shaun The Sheep Movie had a 2nd UK frame of $2.5M for a total $5.6M. School holidays are expected to see kids flock to the Aardman Animation this week. Studiocanal’s other UK titles, Paddington and Oscar hopeful The Imitation Game, now have cumes of $55.6M and $24.8M, respectively. In France, Pathé’s Papa Ou Maman? continues to have custody of a large part of the audience, adding $3.5M for a $10M cume.