UPDATE, WRITETHRU: Star Wars: The Last Jedi has now crossed the $1.2B global mark, overtaking both Captain America: Civil War and Minions to become the No. 13 movie of all time worldwide. The Rian Johnson-helmed epic now stands at $1,205.2M.
At the international box office, it added $64.7M to take the offshore cume to $632.7M. Of that, only $28.7M came from China where Star Wars has had a rough time cracking the market. Although Jedi is currently running 33% ahead of Rogue One at the same stage of international play, it is unlikely it will reach that movie’s $69.5M Middle Kingdom final (at historical rates). In local currency, Rogue One did RMB 224M over its three-day bow last year, and TLJ’s number is RMB 186M.
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The Last Jedi was not going to be an easy win in China which has little familiarity with the franchise and thus no built-in nostalgia. Also, sci-fi is not the go-to genre for local audiences and there is a homegrown comedy threequel, The Ex File: The Return Of The Exes, that’s scoring big in its 2nd frame this session, and is the No. 1 movie of the weekend at the international box office with $78.9M for a local cume of $190M.
Disney has done its level best to carve out a niche for Star Wars. In 2015 it put 500 Stormtroopers on the Great Wall and recruited Lu Han as the official ambassador. Rogue One featured mega-stars Jiang Wen and Donnie Yen in what felt like organic roles. But as we’ve noted before, there was little in the Last Jedi story to up the ante there. The on-the-ground Disney team worked hard to promote the film and raise awareness, with locally-tailored materials. But the 2nd and 3rd tier cities were particularly blasé, we hear.
For more on China and The Last Jedi, see my previous story.Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle swings into China next Friday which will act as another factor working against the Resistance. As expected, the film has rumbled across the $500M global mark today, lifting its cume to $514M after a $70M 3rd frame internationally where the total is $275M in 86 markets. It retained No. 1s in 50 of those and is showing great momentum.
The only new wide opener overseas was Insidious: The Last Key which topped the start of all three of the previous installments with a bigger-than-expected $20.1M in 33 markets. Sony has international on the Blumhouse movie and worked a smart overseas campaign.
Elsewhere, Disney/Pixar’s Coco is kissing $400M international and $600M global, hitting those milestones in the next week, and with Korea, the UK and Japan still to go. Universal’s Pitch Perfect 3 added nine markets and crossed $50M overseas.
In other milestones, Fox’s Kingsman: The Golden Circle is back on the charts. It opened in Japan this weekend to a great $4.3M at No. 1 and three times the previous movie. This pushed the sequel across $300M international.
While we don’t have a full breakdown on Paddington 2 today, ahead of its North American bow next Friday the charmer is estimated to have sandwiched in another $6.17M in 16 markets. The international cume on the Heyday Films/Studiocanal family title is $134M+.
Next weekend sees expansions and holdovers as well as the introduction of Liam Neeson and a new set of special skills in Studiocanal’s The Commuter which hits a handful of offshore markets.
Breakdowns on the films above and more have been updated below. Warner Bros and Paramount are not reporting today.
INSIDIOUS: THE LAST KEY
Sony produced via Stage 6 Films with Blumhouse. While Universal has domestic, Sony Pictures Releasing International has the rest of the world.
Horror/supernatural over-indexed internationally in 2017 and The Last Key is off to a good start, notably in Latin America. The previous trio of movies finaled internationally at $43M, $78M and $61M.
The Last Key unlocked a No. 1 $4.1M start in Mexico. Other notable openings include France ($2.2M with previews), Germany ($2M), Malaysia ($1.6M/No. 1), India ($1.3M) and Spain ($1.2M). Upcoming major markets include the UK, Russia, Brazil, Italy, Korea and Australia.
Sony’s marketing team refreshed the campaign around this one internationally, using interactive creative advertising initiatives. A standee with a mirror dared people to “look into the further” while a cloth covered the “key hand” under the mirror on a desk, which would jerk suddenly towards whoever came to look into the mirror — and was operated the old-fashioned way, by someone behind the standee. One hundred of them were shipped around the world.There was also a 360 video experience on social platforms bringing fans into the haunted childhood home of Elise Ranier; an Insidious booth at Brazil ComicCon and meet-and-greet with Lin Shay and Jason Blum. Artists worldwide (excluding the U.S. and Bermuda) were encouraged to create artwork inspired by the film, and the various time periods in the story. There were over 1,000 submissions from over 25 countries — with top winners from Spain, the Philippines, Ecuador, France and Peru. Blum selected the winners and unveiled them at the event in Brazil.
JUMANJI: WELCOME TO THE JUNGLE
With strong legs, the film retained the top spot in 50 markets with 10 showing increases, including fast-burn Russia. In total, it was playing on 12,500+ screens in 86 territories.
Asia’s regional cume rose to $59.9M with Korea opening at $6.8M over 5 days amid strong local competition. Malaysia’s cume climbed to $12.9M, surpassing Avengers: Age Of Ultron as the No. 3 film of all time locally. Other notable cumes in the region include Indonesia ($11.4M), India ($7.5M) and Taiwan ($5M).
Latin America saw a No. 1 start in Brazil at $7.1M (including previews) and Argentina with $1.9M. Mexico added $1.8M in its 3rd frame, off just 16% for a cume of $14.7M. Colombia held onto the No. 1 spot in its 2nd weekend, up 27%. The regional cume is $39.2M.
Europe has a regional tally of $133.7M. Italy launched on New Year’s Day at No. 1 with $6.8M over 7 days, and the UK took the No. 1 spot in its 3rd weekend with $5.7M for a cume of $35.7M. Holdover business remained strong in the region, off 7% as a group. Major market totals include France ($18.8M), Russia ($19.2M/+74% on last weekend), Germany ($14.8M) and the Netherlands ($6.2M).
Australia has grossed $20.9M after two weekends at No. 1.
The holiday season counterprogrammer goes to China next Friday. Johnson, beloved in the market, has been in Beijing this past week for a premiere and press tour. He stars with Jack Black, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan, Nick Jonas and Bobby Cannavale in the continuation of the 1995 Robin Williams movie that sees four teenagers sucked into the world of Jumanji. When they discover an old video console with a game they’ve never heard of, they are immediately thrust into its jungle setting, and the bodies of their avatars.
Sony’s team did a great job pushing the movie early, inviting international press to set and holding a junket in Hawaii as well as a European premiere tour in the UK, Germany and France. There was also a string of fun global stunts.
STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI
Sadly, China is not going to offer much to the bottom line here. As has been well-documented, the market simply hasn’t shown an affinity for this property that is so embraced and debated elsewhere. An inauspicious $28.7M first weekend is not what was hoped for, and Disney certainly has been doing the work on the ground to get folks excited.
But with a local comedy threequel doing terrific business, the somber notes of Jedi were not the major attraction this weekend. And with Jumanji swinging in next session, there’s very little runway here.
Does all this mean mean Disney should throw in the towel on China where Star Wars is concerned? We’re hearing on the ground this weekend doesn’t bode well for the Han Solo movie this summer, and given the Jedi world and all it encompasses is already well-built, it’s hard to imagine how world-building with specific China appeal could be handled. Then again, Coco may have just turned around Pixar’s traditionally soft Middle Kingdom fortunes and with so much invested, Disney has reason to continue to bang the drum for the galaxy far, far away. Still, $1.205B is hardly anything to brood over.
In other Jedi news this weekend, it has become the 10th highest grossing movie ever in Europe and the biggest of films released in 2017. The UK has crossed $100M to make Episode VIII the 5th biggest film of all time in that market. In the UK and Germany, it’s the top title of 2017. In IMAX, Jedi is the No. 4 movie ever for the format globally ($115M). The international cume is $50M.
It held No. 1s for the 4th weekend in a row in Japan, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary and Switzerland. Russia increased by 2% while other drops were low despite some competitive play.
The UK leads all markets currently at $102.9M followed by Germany ($73.5M), France ($57.6M), Japan ($52.2M) and Australia ($39.8M).
THE GREATEST SHOWMAN
Next weekend adds Korea, Argentina and Uruguay with the UK on January 19 and Japan in March.
PITCH PERFECT 3
The UK leads all play with $17M to date off of a 25% drop; Germany dipped 20% to cume $7.9M and the Netherlands was down just 5% for $2.4M so far.
The eOne/Mark Gordon Company picture that stars Jessica Chastain is led by the UK where the cume is $3M after opening last Monday. The weekend was worth $1.49M at No. 5 on 488 screens. That’s 23% higher than the Sorkin-penned/Gordon-produced Steve Jobs and is in line with Chastain’s Zero Dark Thirty.
In Spain, audiences chipped in $541K on 242 screens, 7% higher than Moneyball (also penned by Sorkin). France shelled out $1.68M on 325 screens, 11% higher than Zero Dark Thirty and in line with The Big Short. In holds, the Netherlands dropped 17% for a $998K cume in the sophomore window.
ALL THE MONEY IN THE WORLD
MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS
The all-star mystery train pulled into another $5.5M from 30 markets this trip. Fox’s Kenneth Branagh-helmed movie saw great holds in France (-20%/$9.6M cume), Germany (-10%/$14.5M), Italy ($16.8M) and Japan (-16%/$12.5M). The overseas cume is now $237.2M for just under $339M worldwide.
MISC UPDATED CUMES/NOTABLES
Darkest Hour (UNI): $1.8M intl weekend (7 markets); $7.4M intl cume
Perfectos Desconocidos (UNI): $1.1M intl weekend (Spain only); $18.1M Spain cume
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