UPDATE, TUESDAY AM PT, writethru with actuals: Coming out of its 2nd overseas weekend, Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them zoomed past the $300M mark at the international box office. Billowing to a confirmed $318.6M cume off of a higher than estimated $132.5M at offshore turnstiles, the Warner Bros franchise-starter has hatched a $474.9M global tally thus far. Last week’s industry projections suggested Beasts has an ultimate shot at upwards of $700M global and those appear to be holding. The 2nd frame added, notably, strong openings in China and Japan.
Also opening in China (and 11 smaller markets), Disney Animation Studios’ charmer Moana sailed to a higher than estimated $17.2M with encouraging response ahead of continued rollout which slots into a similar pattern as those of Frozen and Big Hero 6 (see more below).
'Shazam!' Grows To $164M Overseas; 'After' Has Intense Offshore Awakening - International Box Office
Holodver Beasts bastions saw a 46% drop on the JK Rowling creation. The overall session on the film was down roughly 9.3%, buoyed by the $41M start in China. (The international market itself was down 16% versus last frame and 12.7% from last year across the Top 10 when Mockingjay 2, The Martian and Spectre cast a big shadow.)
The Middle Kingdom launch for Beasts on 12,300 screens already exceeds the lifetimes of all Harry Potter movies, save the finale which grossed about $61M there. Though, it bears noting that was before the boom time at the local box office. And, the current film has the challenge of launching in a year-end traffic jam in what has already been a depressed 2016 PROC. There are at least six new openers next frame including Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children and Japanese smash Your Name. Newt Scamander will be looking to conjure some mid-week dosh.
In Japan, typically a No. 1 or No. 2 market on the Harry Potter films, the five-day $15.6M opening drew 72% of the market. That tops the bows of all Potter pics — save Half-Blood Prince and Deathly Hallows 2 with which it’s on par. The latter film ultimately legged to $124M in the slow-burn, high-multiple market. Another comp, Maleficent — which cast a final $63M spell in Japan — opened to $6.8M in 2014’s three-day launch.Walt Disney Animation Studios’ Moana rode a $17.2M wave in 12 markets with China the only major. In that crowded spot, the plucky Pacific Islander saw a $12.3M waterfall for the Disney division’s 2nd best 3-day opening ever, behind only this year’s Zootopia. Social media has been big as Dwayne Johnson’s Maui in the market with word of mouth spreading — Friday to Saturday saw a huge 175% bump, and Saturday to Sunday dipped by just 5%. With the superb North American performance, the worldwide cume is $97.4M as rollout continues through December, January and March.
In other Disney news, Marvel’s Doctor Strange crossed over the $600M mark with a total $616.5M worldwide. The breakdown is currently $411.2M overseas and $205.8M domestic to push it into the Top 10 of 2016 domestically, internationally and globally. See my separate story for more detail.
Also new this weekend, Paramount’s WWII drama Allied opened in 23 international markets for $9.4M. France, the UK and Spain were the major plays, each landing at No. 2 and in most cases topping comps.
Along with the China openings noted above, next weekend sees some major expansion on Moana, and Sully sets a significantly wider landing strip, including in Italy where Clint Eastwood excels. Underworld: Blood Wars also expands.
Breakdowns on the above and more, along with a look at local-language openers, have been updated below:
In China, Moana bowed at No. 2, coming in behind Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them and with a significant Friday-Saturday bump. Releasing on Friday, the weekend cume is $12.3M for the 2nd biggest Disney Animation Studios three-day opening there ever, after only Zootopia. It’s notable that comp Frozen, which skated to an ultimate $48M+ in the Middle Kingdom, had a $14.1M five-day debut in 2014.
Moana, voiced by newcomer Auli’i Cravalho, is 98% Fresh and has an A CinemaScore with domestic audiences. Directed by Ron Clements and John Musker, it features songs by multi-Tony-winning Hamilton star and creator, Lin-Manual Miranda. The story centers on a Pacific Island girl and master navigator who is looking to reverse the bad luck that has befallen her Oceania village and seeks out the demi-god Maui (Dwayne Johnson, an overseas box office god in his own right) to undo the wrongs he has done to anger the gods.
Disney believes Moana has a long way to go in China, although the market is very competitive right now with an end-of-year logjam. Still, social media is encouraging with numbers among the highest the studio has seen there. While Zootopia was a phenomenon in the market (at $235.6M it is the No. 1 import and No. 2 film of 2016), it started out small and on a percentage basis saw the same kind of jumps that Moana has experienced this weekend.
Now in China, it will be down to local marketing and partnerships so that the film continues to find its audience and continued momentum. On deck next weekend in the Middle Kingdom are six more titles including Japanese smash Your Name, Par’s Allied (with local partner Huahua Media) and Tim Burton’s Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children.
Moana will next notably hit France, Spain, the UK, Russia and Mexico; followed by Germany, Italy and Australia later in December; Brazil and Korea in January; and then Japan on March 10.
Moana follows on the heels of Disney Animation’s hits Zootopia ($682M Intl), Big Hero 6 ($435M), Frozen ($876M), Wreck-It Ralph ($290M) and Tangled ($393M). Their average global box office is over $800M.
France, Oscar-winner Cotillard’s home turf, bowed at No. 2 with $2.8M from 542 cinemas. The result tops Imitation Game by 56% and Bridge Of Spies by 65%. The UK was the next best play at $1.6M/No. 2 at 501 dates for a start 11% below BOS. Spain also started out at No. 2 with $1.3M from 430 sites; 85% above Imitation Game.
Elsewhere, the UAE opened with $440K from 45 sites (+206% on Imitation Game/+26% across Bridge Of Spies); Sweden launched at No. 3 with $231K from 95 (+20% on Bridge Of Spies); and Poland delivered $224K from 95 (+20% on Imitation Game).
As my colleague Anthony D’Alessandro notes, distribution chiefs often say that glossy magazine affairs don’t impact the average moviegoer’s decisions to buy a ticket to a certain star’s film. In that regard, Pitt’s pending divorce from Angelina Jolie wouldn’t be a factor on Allied‘s performance. It certainly will have raised awareness, however.
The next major releases on the Robert Zemeckis-helmed pic are this coming weekend in China, where it has local partners and where Pitt recently traveled in his first time promoting a film there since Seven Years In Tibet caused a political stir. Russia is also on deck this coming frame; followed by Germany and Australia in late December.
FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM
Newt and the gang brought their wands to majors China and Japan this session where the results are strong. All 67 markets are now open on the David Heyman-produced title.
In IMAX, the China start for Wizards, Witches, Aurors, No-Majs and Nifflers was a Wizarding World best of $5.1M on 347 screens. Japan likewise obliviated previous franchise installments — and set the all-time biggest November IMAX opening — with $1.1M from 26. The international cume to date for the format is $19.4M.
Overall, China debuted to $41M from 12,300 screens and with 60% of the Top 5 box office in a competitive market. The FSS has already outlived the Boy Who Lived in all Potter films save Deathly Hallows Part 2 which went on to make about $61M in the Middle Kingdom.
In Japan, typically the No. 1 or 2 offshore play for Potter, the result is $15.6M on 967 screens in a five-day session. All Potter films were bested except Half-Blood Prince and DH2 which were about even with Beasts. Notably, comp Maleficent — which cast a $63M spell in Japan — opened to $6.8M in 2014’s three-day debut.
The mischievous Niffler is still pocketing No. 1s in the major holdover markets. The UK, currently the No. 2 play behind China, has cumed $37.6M after adding $11M this frame. Korea, with an added $7.4M for $24.6M to date, has now outplayed all Potters except the finale. Germany added $5.8M in the session ($18.4M cume); France picked up another $5.9M for a $17.3M tally.
Russia’s total to date of $17M is better than all previous Wizarding movies, including Deathly Hallows 2. Other cumes include Australia’s $13.6M; Italy’s $11.8M; Brazil’s $11.3M (exceeding all Potter lifetimes, save DH2); Mexico’s $11.3M; and Spain’s $8.2M.
This session’s only new opening was Argentina with a $1M No. 1 start ahead of a national holiday tomorrow. Japan is still to come with a January 27 release.
Internationally, the film is bigger than The Incredible Hulk ($129M), Captain America: The First Avenger ($194M), Iron Man ($266M), Thor ($268M), Iron Man 2 ($310M) and Ant-Man ($339M). Doctor Strange has also surpassed the lifetime cume of 2016’s X-Men: Apocalypse ($388M).
China is the No. 1 market at $109.6M, followed by Korea at $40.9M. The UK ($27.5M), Russia ($21.9M) and Brazil ($20.9M) round out the Top 5.
JACK REACHER: NEVER GO BACK
In Sony’s 29 current markets, including seven new launches this session, Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner and the inkspots added $4.4M for a $16.2M cume. In Germany, the start was $1.4M, on par with comp District 9. Brazil landed $740K from 268 screens; 37% ahead of District 9. Spain’s cume after two frames is $2.3M. Sony has France, Italy and Korea still on deck over the next three months.
THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN
Universal’s release of DreamWorks’ bestseller adaptation swigged another $1M in 15 Uni markets to take the studio total to $14.5M. The worldwide gross for Uni is $89.4M. The international total with Mister Smith markets included is $92.7M. Peru, the final theatrical release, opened ahead of expectations this frame with $113K at 37 dates to best comp Gone Girl. Argentina held well in the sophomore frame for an 11-day total of $898K.
MISC UPDATED CUMES/NOTEWORTHY
Inferno (SNY): $1.7M intl weekend (55 markets); $181.7M intl cume
Keeping Up With The Joneses (FOX): $756K intl weekend (21 markets); $13.3M intl cume
Ouija: Origin Of Evil (UNI): $630K intl weekend (40 markets); $45.7M intl cume
MY ANNOYING BROTHER
From CJ Entertainment, the Korean comedy is about a pair of siblings who become mismatched housemates when reunited after 15 years. Kwon Soo-Kyung directs with Cho Jung-Seok and Do Kyung-Soo starring. The film was No. 2 with $6.1M in its Korean opening behind Fantastic Beasts.
SKY ON FIRE
The China/Hong Kong action thriller placed 5th in China for the debut weekend with $3.8M. Directed by Ringo Lam, it’s about a security guard who becomes embroiled in a battle to protect stem cell research from falling into the wrong hands. Notable stars include Daniel Wu (Warcraft, Go Away Mr Tumor).
Universal is releasing this war drama in Russia and CIS where it opened at No. 2 with $2.8M at 1,110 dates. That’s the 3rd biggest opening weekend ever for a local war drama behind Stalingrad and Battle For Sevastopol. Set in 1941, it’s based on the true story of Panifilov’s Twenty-Eight, a group of Red Army soldiers under the command of General Ivan Panfilov that stopped the advance on Moscow of a column of 54 Nazi tanks of the 11th Panzer Division for several days — despite being inadequately armed. Directors are Kim Druzhinin and Andrey Shalopa.
LA REINA DE ESPANA
Directed by Fernando Trueba, the Spanish comedy/drama stars Penelope Cruz, Carey Elwes, Mandy Patinkin and JA Bayona. It’s a sequel to Trueba’s 1998 drama The Girl Of Your Dreams, which also starred Cruz. In a competitive market, it opened at No. 5 with $396K at 305 dates.
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