With official numbers slowly trickling in throughout the week, The Expendables appears to have narrowly topped Inception at the foreign box office over the weekend. The Last Airbender had its best weekend thus far, and Toy Story 3 moved even closer to reaching the coveted $1 billion mark.
Since The Expendables is being released globally under a lengthy list of different distributors, concrete and timely numbers are hard to come by. Based on the information available, though, it looks like the Sylvester Stallone action movie made around $24.5 million over the weekend. This included a $6.1 million debut in the United Kingdom, a $5.3 million start in France and a $1.5 million launch in South Korea. Solid holdover performances came from Russia ($2.8 million), Australia ($1.5 million), Brazil ($957,000) and Spain ($780,000). The remaining $5.5 million was from more than 25 other territories where the movie is currently playing. Through its second weekend, The Expendables has made at least $40 million, though an official number is not currently available.
With no major new openings, Inception experienced its biggest drop yet, down 41 percent to $21.3 million from 59 markets. It continued to perform well in France ($2.4 million), Germany ($1.9 million), the United Kingdom ($1.7 million), Spain ($1.6 million) and Japan ($1.3 million), and still has China and Italy left to open on Sept. 2 and Sept. 24, respectively. Through its sixth weekend, Inception has earned an impressive $357.5 million overseas, bringing its worldwide total (domestic plus foreign) to $620.5 million.
The Last Airbender had its best showing so far with $20.2 million, which was more than double last weekend. Earnings were driven by strong first place debuts in South Korea ($6.8 million), Germany ($5.3 million), Brazil ($2.8 million) and the Netherlands ($1.2 million). Since opening at the beginning of July, the M. Night Shyamalan-directed fantasy adaptation has conjured up just under $95 million overseas.
Salt also improved greatly on its tally from last weekend, up 88 percent to $17.7 million. That included a $3.7 million debut in Australia and a $3.4 million launch in the U.K. (including previews). These earnings propelled Salt past the $100 million mark, and the movie has thus far made a solid $106.2 million overseas.
Despite falling 47 percent to an estimated $12 million, Toy Story 3 continued to shoot up the foreign and worldwide all-time charts. Its international total of $580.6 million is good for 15th place on the all-time list, only trailing Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs among animated titles. Worldwide, the toys' return is at a whopping $984.3 million, placing them seventh on that all-time list. Based on its current pace, Toy Story 3 should pass the $1 billion mark on Thursday or Friday.
After falling off the international radar for a few weeks, Shrek Forever After was back in a big way with $10.7 million. Most of that came from an impressive $8.1 million opening in China. With a $455.5 million overseas total, it now looks as though Shrek 4 could pass Shrek 2 ($478.6 million) and Shrek the Third ($476.2 million) in foreign earnings.
The Karate Kid added $10.5 million from 39 markets, over half of which resulted from openings in France ($3.6 million) and Russia ($2 million). To date, The Karate Kid has earned $124.2 million overseas, and should pass the $300 million mark worldwide early this week.
Meanwhile, The Sorcerer's Apprentice earned an estimated $10.2 million from 45 territories for a foreign total of $91.4 million.