News

Around the World Roundup: 'Golden Compass' Points to Top Spot

by Conor Bresnan
A scene from The Golden Compass
December 14, 2007

Although it had a disappointing showing domestically, The Golden Compass was more successful overseas in its debut this past weekend with $51 million from 27 markets but still a far cry from fellow fantasies like Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings. In many nations, Compass had openings in line with The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, but there were some depressing starts as well, such as in Finland (a third-ranked $406,423), the Netherlands ($604,842 from 103 screens) and South Africa ($236,363 from 77).

In the United Kingdom, Golden Compass was buoyant with $14.7 million from 507 theaters, narrowly higher than Narnia's three-day debut. It was considerably lower than Narnia, though, in France ($6 million from 776 screens) and Germany ($4.8 million from 836). In Spain, the movie's $8.1 million from 505 screens was its most eye-popping figure, out-grossing Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire opening, but it wasn't as impressive in Sweden ($796,557), Taiwan ($1.1 million) and Thailand ($1.3 million).

Enchanted eased only three percent over the weekend to $11.7 million for a $36.5 million total. In Italy, the fantasy comedy notched a $3.3 million opening, topping Mr. Bean's Holiday by 43 percent. However, holdovers haven't been particularly impressive as the picture fell 38 percent in France, 48 percent in Malaysia and 58 percent in Singapore.

Bee Movie began a three-week expansion that will cover almost the entire globe by the end of December. The animated comedy led in Australia with $2.9 million from 363 screens but was subpar for an animated feature. It was also moderate in Brazil with $1.4 million opening from 381 screens. The movie has held nicely, though, including a 20 percent second weekend drop in Spain for a $6.5 million total there.

Beowulf fell to fourth place, off 53 percent to $9.1 million from 61 territories for a $91.5 million total. The animated adventure dropped 41 percent in Japan, taking in just $4.1 million in two weeks. It also had a steep fall in Australia, down 48 percent for a $3.7 million two-week total. Beowulf has a few territories remaining and will likely peter out at around $125 million.

Rounding out the top five, Hitman had an $8.2 million weekend from 38 countries for a $24.5 million total. The video game adaptation opened in second place in Australia with a solid $1.2 million from 172 screens and it took $1.1 million from 224 screens in Italy. In holdovers, the movie has generally stayed below the 50 percent drop-off range, which is good for its genre.

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