Dino pic stomps on records; 'Liar' good
“The Lost World: Jurassic Park” (six territory cume: $23.8 million) stomped into South Korea, easily crushing the record books to post the market’s biggest preem of all time with $3.7 million from 42 cinemas. With screen averages of $33,277, opening weekend admissions were 62.5% greater than previous record- holder “Independence Day.”The dinosaur actioner also shredded the record books in Thailand, with $2.5 million from 137 prints, having beaten the opening weekend of previous record-holder “Independence Day” by an incredible 90%. Ditto in Malaysia, where the first week yielded $2.2 million from 42 sites, after an opening weekend that beat previous title holder “Eraser” by 60%. ‘Home’ stomped In Colombia, the dino pic staged a record-busting bow with $532,021 from 40, crushing Col TriStar’s “Fly Away Home,” which mustered just $36,185 from 13 sites. While “Lost World’s” cume Down Under after three weeks is a robust $10.8 million, pic dipped 62% from its huge first fortnight, partly caused by UIP stablemate “Liar Liar’s” boffo top spot bow with a screen average of $20,886, which also caused sophomore “Double Team” to dip 63%. The Jim Carrey starrer’s bow gave UIP Oz’s best-opening comedy ever and the third-biggest opening of all time behind “Independence Day” and “Lost World.” All serious competish steered clear, although French docu “Microcosmos” had a nice limited run. Good ‘Liar’ “Liar Liar” (cume: $57.7 million) nabbed a good $218,206 from 28 prints in Israel, while gobbling a good, but nowhere nearly as smashing, $1.3 million from 142 houses in Japan, where “Star Wars” stayed strong in its third frame with a local cume of $8.4 million to add to the Fox reissue’s cume of $108.1 million. In Mexico, the threat of a real-life natural disaster sent locals running to theaters to see Hollywood’s depiction of such a situation in domestic underperformer “Volcano.” Fox’s disaster pic posted Mexico’s largest non-holiday opening and second-largest debut ever behind stablemate “Independence Day.” “Volcano” erupted into the top spot with a toasty $1.3 million from 268 prints in its opening weekend, accounting for 52% of all box office biz, and was 300% ahead of its nearest competitor, “Con Air,” whose recent bow it doubled. After a fabulous foreign frame last week, “Con Air’s” cume rose to $18.6 million. In a rather quiet Euro frame, BVI’s actioner landed in the top spot in Germany with the territory’s third-largest June bow ever. “Con Air” also elevated $550,000 from 63 screens in Austria (that market’s second-largest bow ever behind “Die Hard With a Vengeance”). The Nicolas Cage starrer dipped 40% in the U.K., where “The Fifth Element” went wide on 373 screens, grabbing the top spot. Results were influenced by the U.K.’s national cinema day on Sunday, which drew a record 1.4 million punters seeking vastly discounted tickets at just $1.64. In France, “The Fifth Element” passed the watershed 5 million ticket mark last week — only “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” and “Independence Day” did that last year. And chalk up France as another country where “Restoration” failed, doing less than $120,00 for the week on 41 screens, while local interest in Beatrice Dalle didn’t rescue “Blackout.” Megaviolent Gallic pic “Dobermann” opened boffo considering it was massacred by critics, taking $256,000 on opening day from 327 screens, putting it up there with UIP’s “The Saint,” which did $287,000 on 325 screens. “The Saint” (cume: $36 million) also nabbed $22,041 from 25 sites in its first day in Belgium, where BVI’s “Metro” (cume: $36.3 million) bowed in the top spot. In Italy, heat reached unbearable levels and newcomers seemed destined for a quick vanishing act. UIP’s Bette Midler starrer “That Old Feeling” tanked with a lousy $1,223 screen average, while BVI’s “Crossworld” and Eagle Pictures’ “The Call of the Wild” fared only marginally better. In Spain, “High School High” had a soft bow in the second spot.