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B.O. up in the ‘Air’

'Lost World' at $300 mil

While BVI’s “Air Force One” and “Face/Off” and WB’s “Conspiracy Theory” were big players at the overseas box office, “Con Air” was poised to become the 13th pic to join the foreign blockbuster club, while a monster Italian preem edged UIP’s “The Lost World: Jurassic Park” toward a cume of $300 million.

Early this week, “Con Air” will be BVI’s third pic (after “Ransom” and “101 Dalmatians”) to pass the $100 million mark. Having amassed $16.4 million in Germany and $11.6 million in South Korea (making it that nation’s fourth-most popular film ever), cume is $98.5 million.

High on ‘Air Force’

BVI’s “Air Force One” roared down the runway in the second week of its foreign roll-out in fine style. It hijacked second spot (behind stayer “The Lost World”) in Spain for that market’s sixth-biggest bow ever and Harrison Ford’s best outing there, overshadowing bows by “Sling Blade,” “Ana Karenina,” “A Further Gesture” and Venice competish player “Blindly,” which ranged from weak to terrible.

BVI’s “Face/Off” (cume: $29 million) sleuthed 25% of the box office in Argentina after bowing in the top spot with $506,000 from 48 sites, while staying tops in Oz. Pic took a strong $500,000 on its opening day on 409 screens in France, where holdovers (including locals “K” and “Marquise”) endured large dips, with the notable exception of “Scream.”

“The Lost World” (cume: $294.8 million) crushed the competish in Italy, taking 65% of the weekend box office, making it UIP’s largest bow there behind the prequel, despite summer’s most scorching heat wave, which affected stayers “Batman & Robin” (cume: $117.2 million) and “Con Air.”

“The Lost World” also staged UIP’s biggest bows ever in Poland (25% up on the prequel) and Finland, with $660,843 and $675,120 from 82 and 45 prints respectively. In India (where pic bowed in Hindi, Tamil, Telagu and English) and Pakistan, the dinopic posted the largest preems by a foreign film ever, stomping $637,238 and $87,345 from 188 and 22 screens, respectively.

In the U.K., B.O. dropped 24% owing to Princess Diana’s funeral Sept. 6, sending big boys like “Conspiracy Theory,” “Men in Black” and “Bean” into free-fall, but Fox’s boisterous Brit striptease comedy “The Full Monty” retained top spot in its sophomore sesh. It dipped a mere 3%, easily overshadowing a still-good second spot bow for “Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery” (which cut scenes referring to royals).

“Bean,” “Lost World” and “The Fifth Element” are driving a recovery in Germany’s B.O., although bulimia drama “Hunger” failed to draw crowds. “Bean” (cume: $79 million) had a fab week, posting the year’s biggest bows in Denmark and Norway, with $376,790 and $397,415 from 40 screens in each market. Polygram’s comedy also wowed Sweden, Portugal and Thailand, with $702,287, $95,942 and $246,006 from 64, 20 and 68 prints, respectively.

Elsewhere, Fox’s “One Fine Day” (cume: $48.3 million) staged a fine final foreign preem in Japan, romancing $481,985 from 40 theaters, while WB’s “Conspiracy Theory” (cume: $21.4 million) bowed to top spot in South Korea, taking $822,284 from 36 prints, and Portugal, with $185,075 from 35 screens, while coming second behind sophomore “Bean” in Singapore with $240,564 from 22 theaters.

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