Universal Studios hit a historic milestone after yesterday's box office grosses, crossing $2 billion in overseas box office for the first time in studio history. The achievement comes during a year in which the studio reached the $1 billion mark in overseas box office faster than ever before. The previous record in terms of overseas box office for Universal came in 2012 with $1.794 billion.
The full press release form Universal, pasted below, goes into further detail on the studio's historic milestone:
UNIVERSAL CITY, CA, September 18, 2013 - Universal Pictures International (UPI) today announced that with yesterday's box office grosses, the studio has passed $2 billion at the international box office for the first time in its 101-year history. Earlier this year, UPI broke its record for the fastest climb to $1 billion at the box office and shattered its 2012 record for the highest box office ever, which was $1.794 billion.
The success overseas has been fueled by a string of box office hits across multiple genres including Les Misérables ($293 million), Mama($76.1 million), Oblivion ($197.2 million), Fast & Furious 6 ($549.3 million), and Despicable Me 2 ($485.4 million). Fast & Furious 6 andDespicable Me 2 are the second and third highest grossing films at the international box office this year, respectively. Despicable Me 2 is the highest grossing animated film of 2013.
2013 international highlights include:
- Universal Pictures films dominated the worldwide box office on six weekends in 2013 including Oblivion's No. 1 opening, Fast 6which was No. 1 twice and Despicable Me 2 which was No. 1 worldwide for three weeks.
- Fast & Furious 6 opened No. 1 in 65 territories and was Universal's biggest opening of all-time in 41 of those markets. The film also provided the studio with its highest opening weekend ever at the international box office. Fast 6 is the second highest-grossing film of 2013 and Universal's second highest-grossing film of all-time behind Jurassic Park.
- Despicable Me 2 opened No. 1 in 46 territories and is Universal's highest grossing film of all time in 16 of those territories. It is also the highest grossing film of 2013 in France, Mexico, the U.K. and Venezuela.
- Les Misérables is the second highest-grossing musical overseas and worldwide behind Universal's Mamma Mia!
There is still much to look forward to in 2013 including the continued international rollout of About Time, a comedy from writer and director Richard Curtis and the epic 3D feature starring Keanu Reeves in his explosive return to the action-adventure genre, 47 Ronin. UPI will also release 11 films in select territories through the end of the year, including The Wolf of Wall Street, directed by Academy Award®-winner Martin Scorsese and starring Leonardo DiCaprio, in nine markets.
- Oblivion opened in the No. 1 spot in 49 territories and was Tom Cruise's biggest opening of all-time in Russia and Indonesia.
Insidious: Chapter 2 broke the box office record for an opening day gross by a horror film in the United Kingdom in its day-and-date premiere. The horror sequel went on to gross a $4.5 million total over the weekend, claiming the top spot at the box office with one of the more successful debuts for the genre in recent memory. It's a big achievement considering the horror filmed opened alongside Ron Howard's Rush and White House Down in a three-way battle for #1.
Rush settled for a $3.3 million second place finish. The sports drama played in 457 screens and averaged $7,293 per theater, only behind the $11,036 average posted by the Insidious sequel across 414 screens. White House Down placed third with a $1.8 million bow.
Last week's top film, the romantic time travel comedy About Time, dropped to fourth place with a $1.7 million hold. It was a good sophomore weekend for the film, which only fell 37% from the previous weekend. About Time has grossed a total of $6.1 million in the United Kingdom.
Top 10 Films in the United Kingdom. September 13-15, 2013.
A strong $12.7 million debut for domestic period drama The Face Reader led the weekend as South Korea prepares for its Chuseok holiday on Wednesday. The Chuseok long weekend is the equivalent in box office terms to the Thanksgiving weekend in the United States.
The four Western new releases had to settle for mid-table spots ahead of the holiday weekend. Mortal Instruments fared best with a $1.3 million bow, while fare oriented to slightly younger viewers struggled. Monsters University had a fourth place debut with $1.2 million. Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters placed in the middle of the table with a $1.1 million take. Despicable Me 2 was a surprise flop, the film finished the weekend with a $1.9 million take including previews but occupies the sixth position on the chart after failing to hit the $1 million mark over the weekend.
Top 10 Films in South Korea. September 13-15, 2013.
A fantastic $2.4 million hold kept White House Down on top of the German box office in its second weekend. The result represents a mere 15% drop from last weekend's opening, taking the cumulative total to $6.4 million. Olympus Has Fallen received a significantly smaller release in the market this June, only grossing $1.4 million in its theatrical run.
We're the Millers also posted a strong hold, falling only 6% in its third frame for a $1.5 million second place finish. The comedy has grossed a total of $6.8 million in Germany.
Red 2 disappointed with a third place finish after a $1.3 million bow from 532 screens. The original Red tallied a $2.4 million opening en route to an $8.5 million run in Germany.
Two major milestones were reached over the weekend as The Smurfs 2 crossed the $20 million mark in its seventh frame and Despicable Me 2 passed the $36 million mark in its eleventh weekend.
Top 10 Films in Germany. September 13-15, 2013.
Lee Daniels' The Butler was the surprising champion at the French box office over the weekend. The indie drama walked away with a $2.6 million debut from France's highly competitive market, nearly grossing twice as much as the opening frame of Michael Bay's Pain and Gain in a head-to-head battle. The Michael Bay dark comedy finished the weekend in second place with a $1.4 million gross.
Now You See Me reached an important benchmark by hitting the $25 million mark after seven weeks in France. The Conjuring reached the $8 million mark in its fourth frame. Red 2 nears the bottom of the table after surpassing the $5 million mark in its third frame, a long way down from its opening weekend as the top film on the market.
Top 10 Films in France. September 13-15, 2013