UPDATE, writethru: Sony’s Venom, based on the Marvel property, has sunk its teeth into a coursing $205.2M globally with the biggest opening in October history worldwide, domestically and overseas. The international box office portion of Venom’s bite was $125.2M, coming in ahead of industry projections that had it around $110M. The Tom Hardy-starrer bowed in 58 offshore markets and was tops in 57. Overall, and in like-for-likes at today’s rates, Venom bested the openings of Doctor Strange (+20%), Ant-Man And The Wasp (+32%) and Wonder Woman (+38%).
The five-day $16.4M bow of Venom in Korea, a discerning hero market, has already surpassed the lifetimes of Captain America: The First Avenger, Justice League, Suicide Squad and Wonder Woman.
The other majors to release this frame include Russia at $13.6M to top the full runs of Ant-Man And The Wasp, The First Avenger, Justice League and Wonder Woman. In the UK, the Ruben Fleischer-helmed anit-hero pic was No. 1 with $10.5M to top the start of Ant-Man And The Wasp and Wonder Woman. Mexico scored the best Sony opening ever and the highest opening for a standalone superhero pic with a weekend total of $10.2M.
The film’s 32% score on Rotten Tomatoes didn’t ultimately impact the opening at home or abroad; and it’s benefiting from being the shiny new superhero movie in a while. Sony’s President of International Distribution, Steven O’Dell, tells me anecdotally that he’s been hearing from overseas exhibitors that their kids were going to school in the Venom costume and that there was “a lot more love than people were aware of beyond (the core) fans. It went beyond other standalones and the ones with sequels.” But the true power of Venom became evident on Saturday morning with the numbers coming out of Asia. As with any superhero movie, there is a sort of frontloading here, but there is room ahead and the lightness of Hardy’s relationship to Venom provides a fresh spin. O’Dell calls it a “win for everyone involved.” France, Japan and China (the latter TBD) are still to come.
The other major opener this session is Warner Bros’ A Star Is Born. The Bradley Cooper/Lady Gaga-starrer is rolling out on a staggered pattern and riding great word of mouth and reviews after it hit the stage at the Venice Film Festival in a late August world premiere. The weekend came in slightly lower than projections with $14M on 4,590 screens in 31 markets, but this is an adult-skewing picture that has much wider play ahead of it, as well as awards in the crosshairs and is expected to leg out over time.
Sony’s Venom lashed its way to several records this weekend, including the biggest October domestic debut and the same for worldwide. The global cume is a huge $205.2M with $125.2M from 20,800 screens internationally. It also set the top global IMAX October bow at $15.4M from 726 screens in 60 markets. Of that, overseas accounted for $7M to set the format’s best international launch, as well as Sony’s best ever in IMAX — surpassing Spider-Man: Homecoming.
Overall, the picture is tracking as one of the biggest launches ever for a standalone superhero film. To be sure, there is frontloading here and the movie is benefiting from a lack of blockbuster fare in recent weeks. It does have some clear play ahead, however.
Korea, a huge and discerning hero market, led all play with $16.4M over five days. That bests the lifetimes of Captain America: The First Avenger, Justice League, Suicide Squad and Wonder Woman.
Russia was also a win with $13.6M, beating the runs of Ant-Man And The Wasp, Captain America: The First Avenger, Justice League and Wonder Woman. The UK took No. 1 against the openings of Johnny English Strikes Again and A Star Is Born, to gross $10.5M. That’s a better opening than Ant-Man And The Wasp (+40%) and Wonder Woman (+11%).
Mexico delivered Sony’s best opening ever in the market and tops for a standalone superhero with a weekend total of $10.2M. The comps it beat include Doctor Strange (+118%), Ant-Man And The Wasp (+77%), Logan (+72%) and Thor: Ragnarok (36%).
Australia debuted to $6.8M, beating the openings of Ant-Man And The Wasp (+64%), Doctor Strange (+49%), Wonder Woman (+41%) and Logan (+22%).
Germany also topped comps with $5.7M and Brazil opened to $5.1M to best The First Avenger (+86%), Ant-Man And The Wasp (+41%) and Doctor Strange (+9%). In the latter, it’s worth noting that today is a very significant election day.
Other notable openings include South East Asian markets — Taiwan ($4.2M), Malaysia ($3.3M), India ($2.7M), Hong Kong ($2.2M), Philippines ($1.9M) and Singapore ($1.8M). And, particularly in Europe, Italy bit for $4.4M and that’s a tough market to crack.
Still to come are France, Japan and China.
A STAR IS BORN
Warner Bros’ Bradley Cooper-directed and starring remake/update on the classic tale grossed $14M on 4,590 screens in 31 overseas markets this weekend. This is just the first wave of international play for the heartbreaker that boasts Lady Gaga’s feature lead debut and which bolted onto the stage at the Venice Film Festival in late August. Openings were centered on Europe’s mature markets including the UK, France, Germany, Spain and Russia. The start was slightly below industry estimates which had it at $15M-$20M, but this is a film that should leg out well, particularly given the awards heat that will build.
The UK launched to $5.3M, including sneaks, on 809 screens, ranking No. 3. Taking out the sneaks, opening weekend results more than doubled the Cooper-led Silver Linings Playbook, came in 94% over last year’s Best Picture Oscar winner The Shape Of Water and was 30% above the female-skewing Ocean’s 8. The comps the studio is offering lean to drama, whereas La La Land should also be considered as a love story/musical hybrid. We are looking for clarity there in what are varying release patterns for two films which began their runs at Venice.
France generated $2.1M from 256K admissions on 338 screens, ranking No. 2. The results are on par with Shape Of Water and Ocean’s 8 and top Silver Linings Playbook.
Germany bowed with $1.9M, including sneaks, on 460 screens, ranking No. 3. The start is well ahead of the studio’s comps.
Rollout continues next weekend in Korea, Italy, Brazil and Mexico. Australia goes later in October and Japan, a huge musical market, releases December 21.
JOHNNY ENGLISH STRIKES AGAIN
Universal’s return to the superagent spoof added $14.1M in 49 markets this weekend for a $66.5M cume internationally. The Rowan Atkinson-starrer opened in the UK with $5.5M to log the No. 2 start just behind Venom and tracking above Kingsman: The Secret Service.
Other notable markets to come on line include Thailand where it was No. 1 with $632K and topped comps Spy (+28%) and Kingsman (+39%); and Portugal at No. 2 with $522K, again besting comps including Johnny English Reborn (+11%) and Kingsman (+167%).
In holds, Australia led with just a 19% drop for a $7.5M cume to date. Indonesia after two weeks has $4M, while Spain is at $3.5M after three weekends. Upcoming are France, Italy, Germany and Brazil.
Now released in 57 overseas markets, Warner Bros’ Smallfoot planted another $11.7M this weekend on approximately 7,630 screens. The hold was -34% for a running international cume of $32.5M through Sunday.
Australia stomped up by 49% this session to take the haul to a current $6.8M. That’s the lead overseas hub, followed by Mexico ($5.9M), Brazil ($2.6M), Poland ($1.5M) and Italy ($1M). Next weekend sees Spain, Germany, the UK and Japan release; followed by France, China and Russia
Warner Bros/New Line’s spinoff continues to find religion with another $7.2M this weekend in 80 overseas markets on approximately 5,865 screens. The running international cume is now $233.3M, and the global tally is on the road to surpass $350M at $346.7M.
Holds were solid with the Top 5 markets now Mexico ($22M), Brazil ($17.8M), the UK ($14.4M), Indonesia ($13.8M) and Spain ($11.6M). In the UK, this is the biggest movie ever in the Conjuring universe after the movie became tops for the franchise worldwide last session.
In its 17th weekend of release, Disney/Pixar’s Incredibles 2 has become the No. 16 release of all time globally, passing Iron Man 3, and is the 2nd best animated feature ever worldwide behind only Frozen. The full offshore frame was worth $6.9M in 19 material markets. The movie has now been released everywhere and has an international cume of $614.2M for $1,221.3M global, likely on its way to a finish at around $1.24B.
Germany was the final market to join in the superhero family fun last session, and this weekend saw a 38% drop. Holds elsewhere include the UK (-20%), Austria (-22%), Sweden (-30%), Italy (-34%), Spain (-35%), Switzerland (-37%), Finland (-42%) and Denmark (-44%). The Top 5 hubs are the UK ($72.6M), China ($53.7M), Japan ($43.8M), France ($41.3M) and Brazil ($37.5M).
A SIMPLE FAVOR
Lionsgate’s Blake Lively/Anna Kendrick-starrer grossed an additional $4.1M from 59 markets this weekend for an international cume of $27.4M and a worldwide cume of $76.4M. Staggered rollout will see Germany the next major market on November 8.
The current Top Five are Australia ($6.1M), the UK ($5.9M), Russia ($1.9M), Mexico ($1.8M) and France ($1.1M).
MISC UPDATED CUMES/NOTABLE
Night School (UNI): $3.4M intl weekend (21 markets); $12M intl cume
The House With A Clock In Its Walls (UNI): $2.2M intl weekend (20 markets); $13.6M intl cume
The Predator (FOX): $2M intl weekend (76 markets); $73.4M intl cume (China date coming on October 26)
Crazy Rich Asians (WB): $1.6M intl weekend (38 markets); $56.8M intl cume
The Equalizer 2 (SNY): $1.5M intl weekend (40 markets); $85.3M intl cume
Searching (SNY): $1.4M intl weekend (39 markets); $39.5M intl cume
BlackKklansman (UNI): $1.4M intl weekend (27 markets); $35.1M intl cume
Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation (SNY): $1.1M intl weekend (39 markets); $346.7M intl cume
Ladies In Black (SNY): $1M intl weekend (Australia only); $6M intl cume
Peppermint (STX): $828K intl weekend (44 markets); $9.6M intl cume
Mile 22 (STX): $438K intl weekend (55 markets); $27.4M intl cume
Pope Francis: A Man Of His Word (UNI): $400K intl weekend (6 markets); $6.5M intl cume
Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again (UNI): $400K intl weekend (29 markets); $271.1M intl cume
Fifty Shades Freed (UNI): $100K intl weekend (Japan only/final market); $270.8M intl cume