Action trio keeps heat on o’seas

'Armageddon,' 'Weapon,' 'X-Files' take in $41 mil

“Armageddon,” “Lethal Weapon 4” and “The X-Files” collectively minted more than $41 million overseas last weekend to keep the summer B.O. on the boil, while domestic dud “Snake Eyes” had a moderately encouraging offshore preem in Sweden.

Perhaps the frame’s biggest surprise was “The Avengers,” which redeemed itself after getting ambushed by the critics in the U.K. with nifty openings in France, Singapore and Switzerland.

The summer’s standout, “Armageddon” pulled in $18.1 million from 4,249 screens in 30 territories, propelling the cume to $143.5 million.

Michael Bay’s apocalyptic saga debuted in Australia with a very good, but not spectacular, $2.3 million on 318 screens, including previews. But that still was an all-time record for Buena Vista Intl., beating “Ransom,” although it was about 14% below “Deep Impact’s” entry.

The film’s top market is Germany with $30.2 million, followed by the U.K.’s $16.9 million after its third weekend (slipping just 24%), France’s $16.1 million (off 14% in its third) and Brazil’s $6.4 million.

‘Weapon’ wallop

“Lethal Weapon 4” nabbed an estimated $13.2 million on 3,123 screens in 30 countries and the cume zoomed to $75.8 million. It’s tracking strongly enough to reach somewhere between $160 million and $175 million, which would be ahead of the third installment if Warner Bros. had not foregone about $25 million from currency devaluations.

Richard Donner’s actioner smashed the all-time opening record in Taiwan, scoring $1.7 million in two days on 49 screens, commanding 60% of the B.O. in the capital Taipei.

Spain delivered a resounding $1.2 million on 250, WB’s fifth-highest entry ever, and after the summer hiatus, Italy welcomed the Mel Gibson starrer with a muscular $1.1 million on 112 screens, including two days of previews. After grabbing 45% of the Italo market, “Lethal” expands to 230 screens this weekend.

Through its sophomore session, the cop caper has a terrif $7.4 million in Germany (still No. 1, dropping just 13%), $1.2 million in Switzerland, $954,000 in Austria and $943,000 in Norway.

“The X-Files” conjured up $9.9 million from 2,479 screens in 16 territories, elevating the total to $36.9 million.

Fox’s paranormal pic led the field in the U.K., taking a spirited $3.6 million on 419 (plus $500,000 from previews), Brazil ($1.4 million on 255, the distrib’s third-best bow ever), Thailand ($465,000 on 64), Chile and Bolivia.

In its soph session in Mexico, “X-Files” shrank by a modest 34%, bringing the tally to a pleasing $2.4 million.

‘Snake’ shakes

“Snake Eyes” claimed pole position in Sweden, notching $357,000 on 61, more than double “City of Angels’ ” bow, but 34% less than “Con Air’s.” The Nicolas Cage vehicle launches in South Korea Saturday and in Europe and Australia in October and November.

“The Avengers” espied $3.7 million on 648 screens in France (where the critics were mixed, but nowhere near as severe as in the U.K.), $221,000 on 22 in Singapore (also No. 1) and $145,000 in French-speaking Switzerland.

WB will be hoping the redo of the U.K. TV series avoids the precipitous second weekend falls it’s experienced in the U.K. ($2.7 million in 10 days, collapsing by 61%), Sweden ($237,000 to date, plunging 63%) and Israel ($239,000, dropping 48%).

Murphy magic

“Dr. Dolittle” coined $4.9 million on 1,391 screens in 19 markets and advanced to $55.7 million. The Eddie Murphy comedy opened in Hong Kong with a jolly $426,000 on 28 screens and abated by 8% in France for a pretty good $3.4 million in 12 days. British auds really have embraced the talking animals caper, ringing up $21.2 million through the fourth lap.

“Six Days, Seven Nights” collected $3.2 million from holdovers and dashing debuts in Belgium ($439,000 on 49), the Netherlands ($286,000 on 63) and Denmark, and its cume hit $36.8 million.

The Harrison Ford/Anne Heche romance has seduced $4.8 million after its second frame in Spain, earning money faster than any BVI film in history in that market, and $1.3 million in nine days in South Korea.

After pocketing nearly $3 million over the weekend, “City of Angels” climbed to $63.1 million, led by Germany’s splendid $10.6 million.

“Sliding Doors” took a handsome $101,000 in four days at 10 theaters in New Zealand, and will go wider there this weekend, and has a superb $6.3 million after 25 days in Australia.

“The Man in the Iron Mask” moved along to $107.1 million, fueled by Japan’s $10.2 million in 16 days (slipping 22%). “Deep Impact” reached $180.5 million, including Japan’s hefty $44.2 million.

“Godzilla” added $2.4 million to its coffers, now standing at $125.1 million, with Japan contributing a solid, but not overly impressive, $26.5 million.

“Species 2” arrived in the Philippines with a lively $349,000 on 40, but barely caused a blip in the Netherlands, Argentina and Indonesia. Its cume is a pale $7.6 million.

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