'Daylight' does $78 mil; 'Evita' charms auds

Sylvester Stallone starrer “Daylight” continued to obliterate its domestic result, pumping up a strapping $78.6 million. The Rob Cohen-helmed actioner was paced by Japan’s $13.8 million, Spain’s $8.7 million, France’s $8.1 million, South Korea’s $6 million, the U.K.’s $5.3 million, Australia’s $5.1 million and Italy’s $4.7 million. Pic took an explosive $401,000 on 34 entering New Zealand.

But the foreign B.O. last week was as spotty as the cast of “101 Dalmatians,” less affected in Europe by wintry weather than by the varying strength of new releases and the resilience of holdovers.

The end of the vacation inevitably took its toll on the season’s champ, “The Hunchback of Notre Dame,” but pic pocketed a tidy $5.4 million abroad to take its cume to $210.7 million; the standouts are France’s $38.8 million and Italy’s $28.4 million. “Independence Day” fetched $6.5 million in its sixth outing in Japan, advancing to $63 million there, $468.6 million overseas.

Head-scratching

If business was hard to predict in some territories, exhibs were as perplexed as anyone. One U.K. booker expected “The Mirror Has Two Faces” to open with respectable numbers in London, but the whole country shunned it, resulting in a soft $781,000 in six days on 225. Barbra Streisand’s meller was severely panned by the critics, and even the programmer conceded that, as a B.O. draw, Streisand “has had her day.”

There were no surprises with “Ransom,” which had incandescent debuts in five territories, including $2.8 million in six days on 202 in Spain, a record both for a January preem and for a Buena Vista Intl. release, and the territory’s fourth-biggest opening behind “Independence Day,” “Jurassic Park” and “Eraser.”

In a bumper trading session marked by improving weather, Spanish auds also welcomed Manuel Gomez Pereira’s screwball comedy “Love Can Seriously Damage Your Health,” which delivered $885,000 on 110 – the highest debut by a local entry since Fernando Trueba’s “Two Much” in 1995. “Sleepers” has harvested a handsome $7.2 million in Spain, and more than $59 million offshore.

“Ransom” minted $960,000 on 85 in Holland and $640,000 on 47 in Denmark (in both, a record for a BVI live-actioner), plus $419,000 in three days on 30 in Argentina and $426,000 in six days on 27 in Israel (the second-highest bow ever, behind “Independence Day”). The Mel Gibson starrer abated by 30% after a socko start in Germany for $11.2 million in 14 days, and its foreign total rocketed to $52 million. It was due for another big weekend after rolling out in Italy, Brazil and Mexico.

The U.K. had another buoyant frame, underpinned by solid second rounds by “Evita” and “Sleepers.” “Shine” expanded from 23 to 26 screens and jumped to a luminous $780,000 in 13 days. There’s nothing spotty about “101 Dalmatians’ ” perf as it climbed to $25 million after the fifth in the U.K. and $54.4 million abroad.

Germans welcome ‘Evita’

Some German exhibs were unsure about how “Evita” would be received in subtitled rather than dubbed form. They need not have worried, as Alan Parker’s musical took a rollicking $1.7 million on 133, plus $269,000 in six days at 11 theaters in Austria. The cume is an estimated $24 million, including $5.4 million in Italy. In France, the biopic rang up a princely $53,000 in five days at one Paris theater and $78,000 at seven in the provinces, after a Friday launch (Wednesday is the norm) designed to market it as akin to a legit show.

The Gallic B.O. got little uplift from several other rookies: “The First Wives Club” registered a moderate $1.2 million on 227, while “Courage Under Fire,” “The Glimmer Man” and “The Island of Dr. Moreau” all were soft. “First Wives” climbed to $46.3 million after fairly good debuts in Belgium ($357,000 in eight days on 34), Singapore and Thailand.

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