O’seas ‘Force’ soars

'Bean' bags Germany; 'Men' continues roll

“Air Force One” roared off the runway in its maiden foreign flight in Brazil over the weekend, while “The Fifth Element” blitzed Germany and “Volcano” blew hot and cold in four European markets.

Barry Sonnenfeld’s “Men in Black” nabbed $9.2 million overseas at the weekend, elevating the cume to $143.8 million. Beefy bows in the Philippines, South Africa and Peru generated a total of $1.4 million. The stand-out perfs include the U.K.’s $48.6 million, France’s $22.9 million, Spain’s $8.7 million and Brazil’s $8.5 million.

Handled by Buena Vista Intl. overseas, “Air Force One” scored $932,000 on 163 screens in Brazil — BVI’s third-highest live-action debut in history behind “Ransom” and “101 Dalmatians.” Wolfgang Petersen’s actioner rolls out in Spain this weekend, followed by Italy and the U.K.

Luc Besson’s “The Fifth Element” charged into Germany with a socko $4.8 million on 562 prints, in second place behind debutante “Bean.” Gaumont estimated “Element’s” worldwide total at $187.4 million.

“Volcano” erupted in France with a reasonable $2 million on 370, but probably was affected Sunday by the death of Princess Diana.

Mick Jackson’s disaster pic notched pleasing figures in Belgium ($345,000 on 60) and Norway ($167,000 on 34) but took a soft $161,000 on 65 in Sweden. Cume in 16 territories is $27 million.

In its last major market, “Batman & Robin” landed in Italy with a perky $1.9 million in four days from 261, accounting for 65% of the top five titles’ B.O. Its figure was 11% below “Batman Forever’s” preem but 25% higher than “Batman Returns.” The cume is $114.1 million.

“Conspiracy Theory” had fair-to-good debuts in the U.K. ($2 million in four days on 340), Holland ($266,000 on 69) and Malaysia ($227,000 on 41).

After a close first week tussle in France, “Conspiracy Theory” dropped by only 23% for a total of $4.2 million, while “Con Air” plunged by 43%, tallying a disappointing $3.7 million.

In its second weekend in Italy, “Con Air” broadened to more than 200 screens but didn’t get much uplift, resulting in a 10-day cume of $1.2 million. BVI’s actioner climbed to $94.1 million overseas.

“Face/Off” set a BVI opening record in Indonesia, grossing $376,000 on 62, and entered Denmark with a perky $245,000 on 40. In Taiwan, John Woo’s pic fell by just 17% for a muscular $2.5 million in nine days. All told, the Nicolas Cage/John Travolta vehicle amassed $5.2 million at the weekend, pushing the cume to $24 million.

“Speed 2: Cruise Control” added $3.7 million to its coffers from holdovers and debuts in three small markets. Its $77.6 million cume includes a fine $15.9 million through the third weekend in Japan (off just 13%), $6.2 million in France and a below-par $4.9 million in the U.K.

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