UPDATE, writethru:: The last week has been a wild one, and clearly not in a good sense. With the coronavirus forcing the closure of movie theaters in such major markets as France and Spain (along with the previously shuttered China and Italy), the slowdown at the international box office continues and shows no signs of abating in the next weeks. Some estimates we are hearing in terms of global ticket sales impact are reaching $17B+ from January and through May, though this is an ever evolving situation. There is concern in distrtibution circles that the number could be even higher given the lack of new product currently due as studios have shifted several tentpole release dates, or are waiting to ride out the storm before dropping previously scheduled films.
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In total, the Top 5 movies overseas this session, led by Sony’s Bloodshot ($13M), amassed $30.7M, that is down a staggering 85% from this same weekend in 2018 which included Captain Marvel and other Hollywood pics, and when China was open for business. It is hoped that China may get back on track for the May 1 holiday which could then see the release of some of the movies that were shelved when this all began during Chinese New Year. But the market will not have Bond (now moved to November), Mulan (currently undated) or the latest Fast & Furious flick (which has been pushed to 2021).
This weekend, France and Spain closed their cinemas while several other smaller markets did the same throughout Europe. So, we currently have the 2019 No. 1 offshore hub, China, offline, as well as No. 5 France and No. 10 Italy. Japan, which was No. 2 last year, is severely impacted as is Korea (No. 4 last year), and the UK has begun measures to limit capacity. However, we are told that for the moment UK audiences are still going out to the cinema despite overall softness. Ultimately, it is thought that the UK will add measures to limit auditorium capacity to no more than 100 people, à la the Netherlands. Still, as one source says, “Nothing is going to be unscathed from this.”
In terms of this weekend’s movies, Sony’s Valiant Comics pic Bloodshot led at $13M from 50 markets. Russia was the best launch with $2.4M. It ranked No. 1 in most of Asia where star Vin Diesel is a big draw, but the lack of China for now on this movie is a hindrance. Disney/Pixar’s Onward, which kicked off inauspiciously last weekend, added $6.8M in 47 markets, passing $100M global.
Overall, drops were heavier than expected for many in light of the virus. Paramount’s Sonic The Hedgehog, which crossed $300M global, nevertheless saw a 76% drop internationally from last weekend.
In new plays DreamWorks Animation/Universal’s Trolls World Tour began offshore release in two SE Asia markets with just $200K. Blumhouse/Universal’s delayed The Hunt was also impacted with a $700K start in four markets that included a No. 3 launch in the UK.
Breakdowns on the films above and more have been updated below.
Sony/Bona Film/Cross Creek’s Vin Diesel Valiant Comics adaptation came in as the international weekend winner with just $13M from 50 markets. This reported $45M net production was built for Asia, particularly China, and so is not being helped by the current situation. The full overseas cume after some soft previous rollout is $15.1M with global at $25.6M.
There were No. 1s in 27 markets including most of the Asian hubs where it launched. There, Indonesia was the lead play at $1.8M. Overall, Russia’s No. 1 start of $2.4M was the best, and Mexico bowed at No. 2 with $1.2M.
Disney/Pixar’s Onward in the sophomore session added $6.8M from 47 markets. The offshore cume is now $41.4M for $101.7M worldwide. There were no new openings this weekend as some releases have been delayed due to COVID-19 with Korea, Italy and Japan currently slated for April. The UK leads all play at $6.8M followed by Mexico ($5M), Russia ($4.8M), France ($4.3M) and Germany ($2.2M).
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Blumhouse/Universal’s thrifty thriller picked up another $6.2M from 56 open markets to lift the overseas cume to $58.3M. Globally, the Elisabeth Moss-starrer has made $122.7M appear. As with other pics out there this weekend, drops were heavier than hoped given the current pandemic situation. Leading all play, the UK added $997K from 562 locations for an $8.38M cume to date. Mexico has now cumed $4.97M followed by France and Australia at $4.8M each. Korea had a good hold (-35%) in the No. 1 spot in a challenging marketplace and has grossed $3.1M so far.
MISC UPDATED CUMES/NOTABLE
Sonic The Hedgehog (PAR): $2.9M intl weekend (58 markets); $160.7M intl cume ($306.5M global)
The Gentlemen (MIR): $1.8M intl weekend (48 markets); $78.7M intl cume ($114.9M global)
Call Of The Wild (DIS): $1.1M intl weekend (43 markets); $45.2M intl cume ($107.3M global)
*The Hunt (UNI): $700K intl weekend (4 markets); $700K intl cume ($6M global)
Dolittle (UNI): $500K intl weekend (33 markets); $146.3M intl cume ($223.3M global)
Emma (UNI): $400K intl weekend (24 markets); $15.1M intl cume ($25.1M global)
*Trolls World Tour (UNI): $200K intl weekend (Singapore and Malaysia only)
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