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ITALY: 'The Smurfs 2' Races Past 'Rush' in Head-to-Head Showdown on September 25, 2013

The-Smurfs-2-Smurfette-The-Naughties.jpgThe Smurfs 2 opened in 620 screens in Italy over the weekend, claiming the top spot with a $2.8 million bow. The previous installment in the franchise was released during September of 2011 with a $3.6 million premiere, going on to take $15.7 million from the market. The dip from the animated sequel's Italian premiere won't register as a big disappointment for Sony, however, considering that it defeated Ron Howard's Rush in a head-to-head box office face-off. A $2.3 million bow from 482 screens gave the F1 film a market-leading $4,941 average. 

 

We're the Millers turned in a strong $1.1 million hold in its second weekend, a 26% drop from its opening frame. The raunchy ensemble comedy has grossed a total of $3.3 million in Italy. The Smurfs 2 took out most of the lightning from Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters, as the live-action sequel dropped to fourth place in its second frame with a 55% drop from its opening weekend. The Percy Jackson sequel finished its second weekend with a $3.2 million total. 

 

Top 10 Films in Italy. September 20-22, 2013

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MEXICO: 'Instructions Not Included' Posts Record-Breaking $11.5M Debut on September 25, 2013

 

instructions-not-included-picture-8.jpgInstructions Not Included posted the biggest opening weekend of all time for a Mexican film in its home country. The comedy took in a massive $11.5 million in its debut. The previous record holder was the 20us11 Mexican production of Hannah Barbera's Top Cat. Instructions Not Included stars the Mexican comedian Eugenio Derbez, famous for building a loyal following in the country through sitcoms in the mid-90s. The comedy has already grossed over $34 million in the United States.

 

Planes saw its second weekend grosses cut by 40% on the shadow of Instructions Not Included. The animated film took in $1.4 million to reach a $5.4 million total over its second frame. The Conjuring held on to a $584k weekend in its fifth frame, still managing to stay in the top spots after posting the highest opening weekend of all time for a horror film in the country.  The Conjuring has grossed a total of $18.1 million.

 

 

Top 10 Films in Mexico. September 20-22, 2013

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UK: 'Rush' Places First, 'Diana' Settles for Mid-Table Debut on September 25, 2013

 

rushstill.jpgRush raced to the #1 spot in its second weekend in the United Kingdom, finishing its first hold with a $2.1 million take. The result gives Ron Howard's F1 drama a $7.4 million total in the United Kingdom. The first place finish was due in large part to a heavy 62% drop from Insidious: Chapter 2, which finished its second weekend with a $1.7 million take and $7.8 million cume. 

 

Action flick White House Down and the romantic time-traveling comedy About Time both posted $1.1 million holds. White House Down has collected a total of $3.9 million from the U.K. in two weeks and will have a hard time catching up to the $9.4 million grossed by Olympus Has Fallen earlier this year. About Time has now reached ban $8.4 million totals after three weeks in release.

 

Diana, the Princess Diana biopic starring Naomi Watts, posted a $997k performance in a mid-table debut. It's a disappointing performance for the biopic considering it was released in 523 screens, only One Direction: This is Us played in more theaters. The One Direction concert movie reached an $11.3 million total in its fourth weekend on the market. R.I.P.D. and The Call both finished their opening weekends on the bottom half of the table, grossing $810k and $656k respectively.

 

Top 10 Films in the United Kingdom. September 20-22, 2013

 

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GLOBAL: 'Despicable Me 2' Closes in on $500M Overseas Mark on September 23, 2013

DM-2.jpgA #1 opening in Japan turned in $6.3 million for Despicable Me 2, a 36% increase over the original's premiere in the market. South Korea's Chusok holiday began on Wednesday and helped the film improve to a $4.6 million 11-day total in the market. There are five territories left to open for Despicable Me 2: Serbia & Montenegro and Slovenia on Oct. 3, Turkey on Oct. 4 and Greece and Italy on Oct. 10. The animated sequel has grossed $493.3 million overseas and $854 million globally. It is the second biggest film at the global box office, trailing the $1.2 billion earned by Iron Man 3.

Monsters University reached a $4.1 million cume after the long holiday weekend in South Korea, a bright spot as the animated release hits fourteen weeks in theaters around the world. Top performers for Monsters University are Japan ($90.4M), the U.K. ($45.1M), Mexico ($38.2M), China ($32.5M), Argentina ($23.7M), Australia ($22.4M), and Russia ($20.9M). The film has grossed $470.4 million overseas and $736.3 million worldwide.

Prisoners opened day-and-date in 13 minor overseas markets, notching a $1.2 million overseas bow. The film's global total is $22 million after opening in first place in North America. 

Riddick ranked third in its French premiere, bringing in $2 million from 365 locations. The film's German debut brought in $1.3 million from 350 sites for another third place finish. The top markets for the sci-fi action flick are Russia ($8.6M), the U.K. ($4.2M), and Spain ($2.5M). Riddick has grossed $36.9 million overseas and $73.8 million worldwide.

A $9.8 million opening in China gave Turbo the title of the #1 non-Chinese film in the market, a promising start for a film that started slow out of the gate in North America. Turbo took the top spot in Australia with a $1.4 million bow. The animated film has now reached $92 million overseas and $173.6 million worldwide.

Lee Daniels' The Butler is reporting results from 7 overseas markets that takes the film to a $6.1 million overseas total. France is leading the way with a surprising $4.9 million take. The Butler has grossed $112.4 million worldwide.

Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters posted a $1.2 million debut in Australia. The film continues a strong run in its sixth week in France and Brazil, grossing $13 million and $11.1 million respectively. The sequel has now grossed a total of $110.9 million overseas and $175.1 million globally.

The Wolverine is adding to its tally before its scheduled October 17 debut in China. The superhero film has grossed $241.2 million overseas and $372 million worldwide.

The Conjuring fell shy of hitting the $150 million overseas milestone over the weekend. The thriller added $10.1 million from 58 territories to reach a $149.2 million overseas cume, including a strong $5 million debut from South Korea. The top markets for the film include Mexico ($18.1M), the U.K. ($16M), and Russia ($10M). The Conjuring has grossed a succesful $285.4 million worldwide.

We're the Millers continues its strong overseas run, reaching an $84.5 million total over the weekend. The raunchy comedy had a $1.4 million debut in France and posted a $1.3 million hold in its second weekend in Italy. We're the Millers is playing particularly well in Russia ($17.3M), the U.K. ($12M), Germany ($8.6M), and Australia ($8.3M). The ensemble comedy has grossed $222.6M globally.

R.I.P.D. flopped in the U.K. with a $840k finish at 375 dates, finishing at sixth place in its opening frame on the market. The film had similar struggles in Argentina with a $170k debut from 94 dates. The troubled Universal release will hope to fare better in Latin America's two biggest markets next weekend, where it plans to bring in competitive debuts from Brazil and Mexico.

Kick-Ass 2 had a 600% improvement over its predecessor in Colombia, where it had a $65k debut from 50 dates. The superhero sequel has grossed $30.4 million overseas and $59 million worldwide.

Pain and Gain pumped up an additional $1.4 million to its overseas total this weekend, bringing its overseas tally to $31.4 million. The film has grossed a total of $81.2 million worldwide.

Planes took in $7.2 million overseas in its seventh weekend, including a $700k opening in Australia. The top markets for the film are the United Kingdom ($12.2M), Spain ($7.4M), Germany ($6.3M), Mexico ($5.3M), and Russia ($5.2M). The animated film has grossed $69 million overseas and $155.5 million worldwide.

 

NORTH AMERICA: Studio Weekend Estimates: 'Prisoners' Captures First Place with $21.4M; 'Insidious Chapter 2' Slides to Second with $14.5M; 'Battle of the Year' Flops With $5.0M on September 21, 2013

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Sunday Update: Warner's Prisoners led the way this weekend with an estimated $21.43 million. The thriller starring Hugh Jackman and Jake Gyllenhaal debuted on the high end of pre-release expectations. Prisoners was helped out this weekend by the relatively empty marketplace, mostly positive critical reviews and the drawing power of Jackman and the rest of the film's cast as a whole. In comparison to some of Jackman's non-X-Men films, Prisoners debuted 22 percent below the $27.32 million start of 2011's Real Steel and 45 percent ahead of the $14.80 million start of 2006's The Prestige. Compared to previous recent high-profile Warner Bros. September releases, Prisoners opened a tad below the respective $23.81 million and $22.40 million starts of 2010's The Town and 2011's Contagion.

Prisoners grossed $7.0 million on Friday, was up a healthy 29 percent on Saturday to take in $9.02 million and is estimated to decline 40 percent on Sunday to gross $5.41 million. That gives the film an estimated opening weekend to Friday ratio of 3.06 to 1, which is an early promising sign for the film. On Friday, Prisoners received a B+ rating on CinemaScore, but Warner Bros. notes that the rating improved to an A- among moviegoers on Saturday. The audience breakdown for Prisoners skewed slightly towards female moviegoers (52 percent) and heavily towards moviegoers over the age of 25 (72 percent). Prisoners will have a good chance of holding up well going forward, though doing so isn't a lock at this point either given the significant upcoming competition the film will face for adult audiences throughout the rest of September and October.

Insidious Chapter 2 fell one spot to land in second with an estimated $14.5 million. FilmDistrict's successful low-budget horror sequel was down a sharp 64 percent from last weekend, but the decline was quite understandable given the film's status as a high-profile horror sequel and the additional early front-loading the film experienced last weekend from opening on Friday the 13th. In comparison, 2010's Paranormal Activity 2 fell 59 percent in its second weekend to take in $16.51 million, though it should be noted that Paranormal Activity 2 received an added boost that weekend from the Halloween holiday. Insidious Chapter 2 has grossed $60.86 million in ten days. That places the film 7 percent behind the $65.67 million ten-day start of Paranormal Activity 2, though Insidious Chapter 2 is highly likely to close that percentage gap going forward thanks in part to opening well before Halloween and the limited amount of horror options this fall.

Relativity's The Family was also down one place to finish in third this weekend with an estimated $7.0 million. After a respectable start last week, the Luc Besson directed film starring Robert De Niro and Michelle Pfeiffer experienced an underwhelming 50 percent decline in its second weekend. So-so word of mouth and competition from Prisoners for adult moviegoers appear to have taken a toll on The Family this weekend. The ten-day start for The Family stands at $25.64 million, placing it 10 percent behind the $28.53 million ten-day start of 2008's Righteous Kill and 46.5 percent ahead of the $17.50 million ten-day take of 2011's Killer Elite. The Family will likely continue to fall off quickly going forward given the previously mentioned upcoming competition for adult moviegoers.

After falling off a bit last weekend, Lionsgate's Instructions Not Included rebounded nicely this weekend with an estimated $5.7 million fourth place performance. The low-budget Eugenio Derbez comedy vehicle was up 17 percent over last weekend, which was especially impressive given that the film only expanded into an additional 45 locations this weekend. The surprise hit from Pantelion Films has grossed $34.26 million in 24 days and after this weekend's hold is likely to remain a factor at the box office for quite some time.

Sony's Battle of the Year was off to a rough start this weekend with an estimated fifth place take of $5.0 million. The modestly budgeted 3D dance film from Screen Gems featuring Josh Holloway and Chris Brown opened below its already modest expectations and performed poorly for a dance film in general. Battle of the Year did receive a very solid A- rating on CinemaScore and generated a strong estimated opening weekend to Friday ratio of 3.51 to 1 (after opening with $1.43 million on Friday), but positive word of mouth is unlikely to be much of a factor going forward given the small size of the film's opening weekend performance. The audience breakdown for Battle of the Year skewed towards female moviegoers (60 percent) and moviegoers 21 and over (55 percent).

Sony continues to have a tough go of it as of late, as Battle of the Year joins the growing list of recent domestic under-performers for the studio which has also included The Mortal Instruments, The Smurfs 2, White House Down and After Earth. However, things should turn around for Sony in a big way next weekend with the release of the highly anticipated Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2.

Warner's The Wizard of Oz 3D pulled in strong per-location numbers this weekend with an estimated $3.02 million from 318 locations. That gave the IMAX 3D re-issue of the classic 1939 film a per-location average of $9,503 for the frame. Compared to previous IMAX re-issues, The Wizard of Oz 3D opened stronger than both this year's Top Gun 3D ($1.97 million from 300 locations) and last year's Raiders of the Lost Ark ($1.67 million from 267 locations). The IMAX 3D run for The Wizard of Oz is scheduled to be a one-week engagement.

On the platform front, Fox Searchlight's Enough Said was off to a healthy start this weekend with an estimated $240,000 from just four locations in New York and Los Angeles. That gave Enough Said a strong per-location average of $60,000. Since its opening on Wednesday, the critically acclaimed romantic comedy starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus and the late James Gandolfini has grossed $293,734 through its first five days.

Universal's Rush was off to a promising platform start of its own with an estimated $200,000 from five locations in New York and Los Angeles. With that said, it was a bit underwhelming that the film's per-location average of $40,000 came in significantly below the per-location average of Enough Said (though that may be more a reflection of the strength of Enough Said this weekend). Rush (which was directed by Ron Howard and stars Chris Hemsworth and Daniel Brühl) will hope to be aided by its strong critical reviews when it expands into wide release next weekend.

Saturday Morning: Warner Bros. reports that Prisoners grabbed an estimated $7.01 million in its Friday debut, putting the drama on track for a $20.5 million opening weekend. The ensemble flick led by Hugh Jackman and Jake Gyllenhaal marks the first offering for adult audiences in over a month--since Lee Daniels' The Butler began its very successful run.

Strong critical reviews (currently at 79 percent on Rotten Tomatoes) have helped propel Prisoners to its healthy opening. Although the film has been somewhat divisive among early crowds, its Flixster score still sits at a strong 88 percent after one day. The picture earned an overall "B+" CinemaScore with 64 percent of those polled giving it an "A-" and 36 percent giving it a "B+"--a relatively good grade for what appears to be a polarizing film.

Prisoners is successfully capitalizing on the star power of Hugh Jackman in addition to its recognizable ensemble cast. Jackman is fresh off the success of last year's Les Miserables and this past summer's The Wolverine. Some awards buzz has surrounded Prisoners, although it remains to be seen how much longevity the film will find at the box office--due in large part to the number of adult-oriented films (which are also receiving strong early buzz) set for release throughout October.

Sony's Battle of the Year is failing to catch fire. The dance flick starring Chris Brown and Lost's Josh Holloway was targeting teenagers in a bit of counter-programming this weekend, but most of them are rejecting the flick judging by the film's $1.5 million first day take. Not surprisingly, critics have lambasted the film with a 6 percent Rotten Tomatoes score while early audience word of mouth has driven Battle's Flixster user score down to a more reasonable, though still disappointing, 65 percent. Last year's Step Up Revolution wound up as the lowest grosser of that franchise, and with Battle's performance it's evident that fans of the genre clearly aren't itching for just another generic dance movie. Look for Battle of the Year to pull around $4.3 million this weekend.

WB's Wizard of Oz re-release fared well in IMAX and 3D to start the weekend. The family classic brought in an estimated $751,000 yesterday. Expected to perform even stronger throughout the weekend as parents and kids make their way to theaters, the film should pull in around $3 million this weekend. Wizard of Oz continues to prove its enduring appeal even after 74 years.

Lastly, Universal estimates a strong $66,000 opening day for Ron Howard's Rush, which opted for a platform release in 5 theaters this weekend ahead of its wide release on September 27. Strong buzz for the film is helping in addition to Howard's credentials as well as star Chris Hemsworth. Rush is aiming to earn around $220,000 this weekend for a strong per-theater-average of $44,000.


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