UPDATE, TUESDAY, WRITETHRU: Actuals for the international weekend have been updated with Warner Bros’ frame leader Suicide Squad posting a final $133.3M on 17,630 screens in 57 markets, according to the studio. That pushes the offshore debut $1.2M over that of comp Deadpool which bowed in February to $132.1M. This was expected when WB put out its estimates on Sunday of $132M (see below). The UK notably came in higher at $14.8M versus yesterday’s $13.9M projection.
Both Deadpool and Guardians Of The Galaxy have been comps for the latest DC superhero entry given the anarchic tones and newness of the properties. GOTG debuted in essentially the same frame in 2014 to $67.4M in 15 fewer markets. Deadpool bowed in 61 markets, although the initial suite of majors differs (DP had Germany but not Spain, Suicide vice-versa, etc).
Suicide Squad easily maintains the record for all-time biggest August opening abroad and 2nd biggest DC opening behind Batman V Superman. It also has the overseas IMAX record for August, although Sunday’s estimate was lowered to $7M from $7.2M. The film faced tough critics ahead of the weekend, but had, as a rival distrib put it “the perfect marketing set-up.” There’s little major competition on the horizon next frame, and this will be one to watch during the mid-weeks.
Actuals have been updated in the breakdowns below.
UPDATE, WRITETHRU: Busting out in 57 international markets, Warner Bros’ Suicide Squad banded together for a $132M start on its debut weekend. That sets a new overseas record for August and nearly doubles the opening of comp Guardians Of The Galaxy which kicked off on essentially the same date in 2014, albeit in 15 fewer markets. As for the other major comp, Deadpool, that film sassed its way to a $132.1M launch in 61 markets last February, and today retains a slight overall edge on Suicide. However, WB says that when comparing the same markets currently in release, the Squad came in higher.
WB’s latest DC adaptation landed ahead of offshore industry predictions from before the weekend. Cautious estimates put it at around $110M while others topped out at $120M. Some wondered if it could go as high as Deadpool’s $132.1M, but suggested that would be the very top of the range. As it happens, despite harsh reviews of the Will Smith/Margot Robbie-starrer, fans turned out. With the numbers so close today between Suicide and Deadpool, it is possible the current film ultimately tops the opening of Fox’s R-rated anti-superhero once actuals are tallied tomorrow.
The David Ayer-directed villain fest set a new record as IMAX’s best August start ever with $7.2M. It is the 2nd biggest DC bow of all time and WB’s 5th highest launch. For Smith, it provided several record-breaking bows. His Facebook following of over 75M was a boon to marketing, driving early online engagement with the trailer and other materials that got more than 14M views.
While domestically there was a 41% Friday to Saturday drop, right now we have only bulk numbers for international rather than a clear Sat/Sun daily figure. Through Friday, Suicide Squad was at $64.6M after staggered release that began Wednesday. It added an estimated $67.4M on Sat/Sun after a $33M Friday. We know superhero movies with so much heat on them — and particularly in a summer that has been so tepid — can be heavily front-loaded, but an apples-to-apples comparison in international markets with so many variances is tough until the picture comes into sharper focus. In some cases Suicide did not open No. 1 overseas, impacted by local films and regional affinities, but that shouldn’t undermine the debut. We’ll keep an eye on mid-weeks in some of the bigger markets. For now, the UK is the lead play with $13.9M, followed by Russia, Brazil, Korea and Australia. The film will not have a China release. (More below)
Expanding this week, Illumination/Universal’s The Secret Life Of Pets has crossed $500M worldwide, sitting up in China with a $28.9M start after debuting Tuesday. It was led locally by Time Raiders, a 3D adventure fantasy that is giving a boost to a lackluster Middle Kingdom season with a $70M+ opening. Notably, the film stars popular actor/singer Lu Han who was Disney’s Star Wars ambassador for China. Uni’s Jason Bourne also added four new markets for a $20.9M sophomore session and is approaching $200M worldwide.
Further notable, Disney/Pixar’s Finding Dory has spun a global cume of $870.3M and is soon to pass Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice to become the 4th biggest grossing film of the year worldwide. And it still has two key markets on deck. Dory’s time at the aquarium gives The Walt Disney Studios bragging rights to the Top 4 movies globally in 2016 thus far.
Breakdowns are updated with actuals below.
Suicide Squad played on 17,630 screens this weekend, setting the all-time record for biggest August opening overseas (also for IMAX at $7M and $19.2M global); and it is the No. 2 DC bow ever, behind March’s Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice.
The UK leads with $14.8M on 1,054 screens, including previews. At No. 1, Suicide’s FSS is 6% higher than Deadpool and 112% more than GOTG and gives Will Smith his best start ever in the market. In Russia, the motley crew has the biggest WB opening of all time with $11.4M on 2,482 screens. The results are 63% higher than GOTG, 41% ahead of BVS and 21% higher than Captain America: Civil War. Also tops for Smith.
Despite the distraction of the Olympics, Brazil raked in $11.75M on 1,406 screens (including sneaks) to exceed Deadpool by 44%. This is the market’s biggest August opening weekend of all time, the biggest Will Smith opening, the 2nd biggest WB film ever, and the biggest opening for a superhero film.
Korea got off to a strong start on Wednesday and Thursday but faced stiff competition at the weekend with local pic The Last Princess debuting and Operation Chromite in its second week. Suicide Squad ended up at No. 3 for the frame with $10.8M on 831 screens. That’s 141% over GOTG and on par with BVS; also Smith’s best ever. Similarly, Spain was a No. 2 opening behind The Secret Life Of Pets. The big family market nevertheless gave the Squad $3.4M, to be DC’s 2nd best opening ever there. The debut was 84% higher than GOTG.
Australia chipped in $10.5M on 516 screens for best August bow ever and Smith’s biggest. Versus GOTG, it’s +114% and 7% ahead of BVS. A contract dispute with a local exhibitor doesn’t appear to have been majorly impactful in Mexico where the super villains arrested $10.4M on 2,609 screens for the top August opening weekend ever, the highest opening weekend of all time for Smith and the 2nd best ever for WB. France debuted to $7.9M on 667 screens. Argentina, Italy, Germany and Japan are still to come.
China got a shot in the arm this weekend with the release of 3D fantasy adventure pic Time Raiders from director Daniel Lee (Dragon Blade). The opening was $64.6M for a $70M cume including previews ($5M came from IMAX plays). This follows the recent strong performance of Jackie Chan-starrer Skiptrace, but also a string of titles that have underperformed as July box office in the Middle Kingdom dipped 18% compared to last year. Last week’s major entry, League Of Gods, fell hard this week. From Le Vision Pictures, Time Raiders stars Lu Han, a big draw for local fans, and Jing Boran of last year’s summer smash Monster Hunt. It’s based on the boook series Grave Robbers’ Chronicle, about the adventures of a young man from a family of tomb-raiders and which has been adapted in several forms.
THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS
Illumination/Universal’s dog tale broke the $400M mark earlier this week and Sunday bounded past $500M at the worldwide box office. With a $29.3M opening in China (where it bowed Tuesday) Pets collared a $69.3M weekend in 41 territories. The offshore total is now $183.4M and worldwide it’s at $502.9M.
Several new markets opened this weekend. In China, Pets is No. 2 behind local blockbuster Time Raiders. In Korea, it did a solid $6.9M despite being in 5th place behind three local pics and the beginning of Suicide Squad. Spain topped Suicide Squad with $4.3M over the FSS and the best animated bow of the year. Elsewhere, Pets scooped up $2.7M in the Netherlands (No. 2); $1.2M in Belgium (No. 2); $1.2M in Sweden (No. 2); and $1.2M at No. 1 in Denmark which tops all other Illumination/Uni debuts. Hungary delivered the biggest opening overall of the year with $775K.
In holds, Germany is at No. 1 for the 2nd week in a row (Suicide did not open there this weekend) with $4.2M and an 11-day total of $15.2M. France’s cume is $11.5M; Latin America has Pets in Mexico at $14.8M after 10 days, and No. 1 for the 3rd straight frame in Argentina with $10.3M after 18 days. There are still 24 markets to come on Pets.
Universal’s 2nd week holdover grossed $20.1M in 50 international markets, bringing the offshore total to $91M. The worldwide tally is now $194.1M. There were four additions in the frame with each giving JB a record for the franchise; this film has its sights on being the top overseas grosser of the series. India was a No. 2 start for a non-local pic with $1.1M, followed by Argentina which came out of the gate at No. 3 with $624K. That is the best-ever opening for star Matt Damon. Egypt came in at No. 2 with a better than expected $125K and Slovenia packed $43K. The UK is the top holdover at No. 3 behind Suicide Squad and Dory and now has cumed $18.4M. Australia is also at No. 3 with a $10.3M total after 11 days. Still to come are key markets like France and Germany next weekend with China bowing August 23, followed by Mexico on August 26 and Russia on September 1.
The forgetful fish continues reeling in a memorable run overseas with another $12.4M weekend taking the offshore cume to $397.4M. Combined with domestic, that brings the global total to $870.3M. The Disney/Pixar charmer is about to pass Batman V Superman’s $872.7M to become the 4th biggest movie worldwide this year. It will join three other titles from the Mouse to make up the Top 4 of 2016: Captain America: Civil War ($1.152B), Zootopia ($1.023B and The Jungle Book ($941M).
Japan has now overtaken China as the lead offshore market with $40.9M to date. That’s followed by the Middle Kingdom’s $38.4M, Australia’s $35.8M, Brazil’s $33.2M and the UK with $26.4M. That last figure comes after only 10 days of release.
ICE AGE: COLLISION COURSE
As the 5th Ice Age eyes further releases in Italy and China later this month, Fox’s Collision Course collided with $11.5M this weekend in 66 markets. France, Germany and Poland had strong holds, each down less than 30% as families look to cool down during summer. The respective cumes in those markets are $18.7M, $21.4M and $3.7M. The UAE was new this frame with $875K for a No. 2 start. The international cume is now $234.6M.
THE LEGEND OF TARZAN
Crossing $200M internationally, WB’s Tarzan swung with an extra $8.3M this weekend from 5,636 screens in 53 markets. The offshore cume to date is now $211.4M. Germany, where WB’s other Margot Robbie-starrer, Suicide Squad, has yet to open, now has a $4.2M cume. Japan jumped to $4M. In China after 20 days, the total is $45.1M to lead offshore markets. Mexico is next with $13.7M, followed by the UK at $11.9M.
The Sony pic added $6.4M this weekend with Germany getting its first glimpse at the team for $1.4M. It was the top opener in the market that is led by Pets. The international cume to date has climbed to $62.8M. Russia added $765K in its 2nd weekend from 2,282 screens, which brings its cume to $4.2M. Australia dipped by 49% in the 4th frame for a local cume of $8.6M. Still on deck to be slimed are France, Mexico, Spain, Japan and Korea.
With a better than projected $5.7M in the frame, WB’s scarer has a $31.1M cume in 42 international markets. Germany picked up $1M in its debut on 278 screens to pass The Conjuring by 33% and Annabelle by 3%. Italy also flicked the switch, landing No. 1 with $655K on 238 screens. The next markets to open include Brazil, the UK, Spain, France and Korea. Mexico is the current leader at $4M.
In EMEA, ie the Mister Smith Entertainment territories on the Steven Spielberg family tale, the frame was worth a total $4.4M for a cume to date of $47.2M. The UK pulled in another $2.2M for a total $26.45M to lead all offshore markets. For Disney, the session added $1.2M for a $26.9M cume.
NOW YOU SEE ME 2
Nearing $250M internationally, Lionsgate’s sequel added $4.3M from 69 markets this frame for a cume of $247.6M. Germany and Japan are still to come on the film that got a major boost from China during its now-ended run. France was in its 2nd frame this week for a total $8.9M.
INDEPENDENCE DAY RESURGENCE
With $3M in 21 markets, Fox’s return to Roland Emmerich’s alien invasion series has taken the offshore total to $276.7M. Germany held nicely for a $15.6M cume and France is now at $9.1M. In Japan, IDR dipped 49% to take the cume to $24.2M. Italy is the last market to release, on September 8.
STX’s comedy added nine new international markets, raising a glass to $2.96M in a total 21. The offshore cume is $5.65M to date. Despite strong competition from Suicide Squad, the adult-skewed counterprogrammer had good holds and continues to outperform comps. In France, it opened No. 6 with $787K; Belgium was a No. 4 start with $327K from 52 locations — that’s 32% ahead of Bridesmaids, 55% over The Heat and 62% atop What To Expect When You’re Expecting. Denmark now has a cume of $781K (+40% on Bridesmaids, 111% ahead of Sex Tape, 496% over Trainwreck). Norway and Finland have cumed $574K and $309K, respectively. A key market on this sort of film, Australia bows next weekend as do the Netherlands and Sweden. Brazil, the UK and Mexico are later in August with Russia and Germany in September.
ABSOLUTELY FABULOUS: THE MOVIE
The sweetie-darlings made their way Down Under this weekend to open with $2.5M and the No. 3 slot. Playing in just three markets, the total overseas on the Fox Searchlight pic is now $24.8M after the full weekend of $2.77M. The Netherlands had a small 35% drop for a $1.14M cume and the UK has now crossed $21M after six frames for a total $21.1M. Strutting into New Zealand and Fiji next weekend, AbFab will see the vast majority of international releases through the fall.
MISC UPDATED CUMES/HIGHLIGHTS
The Last Princess (LTE): $10M debut in Korea at No. 1
Operation Chromite (CJE): $9.5M weekend Korea; $33.5M cume
The Purge: Election Year (UNI): $1.3M weekend; $20.17M intl cume; worldwide approaching $100M
Central Intelligence (UNI): $1.2M weekend; $80M intl cume
The Shallows (SNY): $1.4M weekend; $16.4M intl cume
Mike & Dave Need Wedding Dates (FOX): $682K weekend; $12.5M intl cume
Sultan: With 299.9 crore ($43.73M), now No. 3 Bollywood movie ever in India; overseas total at $24.2M for 6th place