UPDATE, WRITETHRU: The international box office got a boost this weekend, jumping 110% from last frame across the Top 10 titles, and dipping just 6% versus the similar session last year. There were two major overseas openings for Hollywood, with a raft of hot local movies in the mix around the globe — many with savvy studio participation. There are also a series of key milestones as Finding Dory finally splashed into Germany and set a new bar for 2016 as well as crossing $500M internationally — putting the $1B worldwide mark within fin’s reach. And, there are no growing pains for Bridget Jones’s Baby with a 3rd straight No. 1 in the UK as it cozies up to $100M overseas.
First up among new titles, Fox/Chernin Entertainment’s Tim Burton-directed Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children was the No. 1 offshore opener at $36.5M in 59 markets. Korea is a highlight where Miss Peregrine has already bested the lifetimes of Alice Through The Looking Glass, Cinderella and Snow White And The Huntsman. Overall, the adaptation is also comping well to Fox’s own Maze Runner. (As with all studio titles, see below for a fuller picture.)Similar to domestic, the other major new title was Lionsgate/Summit/Participant Media’s Deepwater Horizon which bowed to $12.4M in 52 markets — the UK, Russia and Mexico being the key plays.
Notably, this was a big weekend for local titles — and Fox, Lionsgate and Sony benefited on that front. Half of the Top 10 grouping was local-language, four of them from China for the National Day Golden Week holiday frame. While China’s been in the doldrums recently, the four movies in this weekend’s Top 10 are just 6% off the four that slotted into the same session last year. (However, it bears noting that last year’s batch included the 2nd frame of Lost In Hong Kong which by that time had crossed $200M in six markets.)
Tops from China was I Belonged To You at $33.6M. The romantic comedy is directed by Yibai Zhang who’s had a hand in such previous youth-targeted hits as Love O2O and So Young 2. Lionsgate got in on the action with Chinese fantasy pic L.O.R.D.: Legend Of Ravaging Dynasties. The start on that one is $29.2M in four markets including the Middle Kingdom. Further contributing to the high end of the Top 10 this week are Operation Mekong ($23.8M) and Mission Milano ($15.1M).
In India and the UK, Fox International Productions and Fox Star, released cricketer biopic M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story, batting $14.5M. The India bow is particularly remarkable as the second biggest opening of 2016 — after Salman Khan’s recent smash Sultan. Rather than rely on marquee name Bollywood stars, M.S. Dhoni‘s key attraction is its legendary subject.
For Sony, the local-language play this week was Russia entry The Duelist. From super-producer Alexander Rodyansky, the period thriller bowed at No. 1.
Elsewhere, Korea went bonkers for Kim Sung-soo’s Asura: The City Of Madness ($12.6M) and France was far from stingy over hitmaker Dany Boon’s comedy Radin! ($6.45M).
There’s a fair bit of runway ahead as the next major title to release internationally, The Girl On The Train, travels to just the UK and Australia in the coming week. Otherwise, expansions will see Miss Peregrine enroll in France, Russia and Germany; Deepwater surface in Italy and Australia; Pets stroll to Italy; and Jason Bourne hop a flight to Japan.
More on this weekend’s films in the updated breakdowns below:
MISS PEREGRINE’S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN
The Tim Burton-directed adaptation of Ransom Riggs’ novel fared best in Korea, the UK and Mexico and had No. 1 bows most everywhere to amass its $36.5M debut. In the same suite of release markets and at current exchange rates, the opening is 35% bigger than Oz: The Great And Powerful, and 85% bigger than The Chronicles Of Narnia: Voyage Of The Dawn Treader.
Business picked up over the course of the weekend which could lead the multiple to 3-3.5x. That would land it among Burton’s best overseas performances outside the Johnny Depp canon, although it would top some Depp collaborations. Burton has a certain offshore brand and there are several major markets to come including France, Russia, Germany, Italy and Japan. No word yet on China.As noted above, Miss Peregrine has already bested the lifetime cumes of Cinderella and Alice Through The Looking Glass in Korea. The start was No. 2 there with $5.2M, behind local blockbuster Asura. In the UK, the peculiar children brought in $4.6M which is 40% bigger than Narnia: VOTDT and 69% over The Maze Runner. The UK was also a No. 2 start as Bridget Jones’s Baby keeps calm and carries on.
Other top openers include Mexico (No. 1/$3.8M/+6% on Oz: The Great And Powerful); Australia (No. 1/$3.1M/+54% on Narnia: VOTDT); Brazil (No. 1/$2.7M/+81% on Maze Runner) and the Philippines (No. 1/$1.7M/biggest Tim Burton opening). At $2M from 438, Spain was notably 50% bigger than Charlie And The Chocolate Factory. Malaysia and Indonesia were also all-time tops for Burton.
Miss Peregrine, led by Eva Green, Asa Butterfield and Samuel L Jackson, takes the brood to 20 markets next weekend, including France, Russia, Germany, and India.
L.O.R.D.: LEGEND OF RAVAGING DYNASTIES
M.S. DHONI: THE UNTOLD STORY
Mahendra Singh Dhoni is one of the highest paid athletes in the world and a gentleman cricketer who was captain of India’s team, leading it to World Cup victory in 2011. The film, directed by Neeraj Pandey, recounts his life story from the dusty roads of his origins in Ranchi to the sacred grounds of the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
Sushant Singh Rajput, Kiara Advani and Anupam Kher star in the biopic whose trailer generated some 22M views. The film was released in Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, and Marathi versions.
M.S. Dhoni also opened in 256 North American theaters to gross $1.2M there and place 13th among all titles in release.
Lionsgate/Summit/Participant’s real-life oil rig disaster pic opened to $12.4M this weekend in 52 markets. Directed by Peter Berg and starring Mark Wahlberg, it earned an estimated $1M on 119 offshore IMAX screens. With an A- CinemaScore domestically, DH is hitting a similar release corridor as last year’s reality-based Everest ($203.4M WW cume) and 2013’s Captain Phillips ($218.8M). All three scored at fall festivals with Deepwater just bowing in Toronto (Everest opened Venice in 2015 and Captain Phillips was a NY and London premiere).
The next majors to open are Australia and Italy on October 6. The rest of the key markets roll out over October, November and December.
BRIDGET JONES’S BABY
Universal, Miramax and Studiocanal’s presentation of this Working Title production is growing up nicely. With a $19M 3rd frame, Renee Zellweger and co have cumed $99.9M overseas for $120.9M in the worldwide buggy. By the time it reaches term, Bridget should be looking at around $200M global — a nice bundle for a film that stumbled in the U.S. It’s getting a lot of mileage out of the UK where it is the No. 1 film for a third week in a row with a fantastic $6.7M frame and a 17-day total of $41.1M.
There are 10 openings to come in the next two months including French-speaking Switzerland, Chile, Uruguay and Venezuela. Universal does not have distribution rights in France, Germany and Austria.
THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN
France also opened with $1.9M (including previews) on 400 screens; 4% bigger than the start of Washington’s The Equalizer and with major competition from Radin!. The UK’s second frame takes it to $5.7M while Germany came in No. 3 behind Finding Dory and Bad Moms, but had a strong hold of just -5% for a total $2.9M to date. Russia lifted the cume to $3M, Brazil is at $2.2M and Spain at $2.4M.
Storks landed No. 5 in China where the market is rife with local pics during a holiday frame. The total there is now $8.4M. Mexico dipped 37% and stuck No. 2 with a cume of $4.8M. Australia swooped up by 41% with kids’ vacations continuing, although the film is ranked No. 4 and has a total of $3.6M to date. Russia and Brazil had soft drops and have cumed $3.1M and $3M, respectively. France and the UK open next.
In Italy, Finding Dory continued to lead the box office by a considerable margin in the 3rd weekend. To boot, in local currency (13.3M euros), Dory is now the No. 1 animated title of 2016 there.
The full international weekend in 17 markets was $13.6M which pushes the forgetful blue tang across the $500M mark internationally with $500.8M. Worldwide, Dory has spawned $985.2M making $1B a foregone conclusion.
Dory has now passed Despicable Me 2 ($971M) to become the 5th highest-grossing animated title of all time globally.
THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS
MIL JEONG (AGE OF SHADOWS)
Warner Bros’ local-language Korean title added $1.6M to take the total there to $53.8M. The pic dipped to No. 5 this week with the arrival of homegrown crime thriller Asura as well as Miss Peregrine, Bridget Jones’s Baby and WB’s own Sully. It’s now the No. 4 movie of the year and No. 3 amongst Korean pics.
With Dory dominating the market, Italy gave Ben-Hur a tepid reception at 340 locations for $578K; notable given the remake was shot at Rome’s historic Cinecitta which had also played host to the original. A $1.5M total weekend brings the offshore tally to $62.9M. Ben-Hur has a China release set for October 10.
KUBO AND THE TWO STRINGS
MISC UPDATED CUMES/NOTEWORTHY
The Purge: Election Year (UNI): $1M intl weekend (12 markets); $37.6M intl cume (final market — Brazil — opens next week)
Jason Bourne (UNI): $300K intl weekend (20 markets); $237.4M intl cume ($399.1M WW; final market — Japan — opens next week)
The BFG (DIS): $300K intl weekend (6 markets); $50.1M intl cume (Disney markets only)