‘Smith’ slows ‘Sith’ advance o’seas

High-profile pic cuts into Darth's B.O. take

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie took over the world from George Lucas and Yoda this weekend as the opening of “Mr. and Mrs. Smith” dominated at the foreign box office with a beefy $32 million at 3,600 playdates in 35 territories.

The fourth frame of “Star Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith” declined 48% to finish a distant second with $19.1 million at 7,638 engagements, pushing its foreign cume to $340.6 million and its combined worldwide total to $673 million — good enough for 20th on the all-time worldwide list ahead of “The Sixth Sense.”

The final weekend numbers for “Mr. and Mrs. Smith,” distribbed by Fox Intl. in most major territories, could be significantly higher since the preliminary figures included none of the Eastern European markets handled by Summit except Turkey, which opened respectably with $900,000 at 99 playdates.

The action-comedy led in every market where it opened and was the second highest opener of the year after “Revenge of the Sith” in Australia, Peru and Sweden. “Mr. and Mrs. Smith” generated its top grosses in the U.K. with $7.1 million at 448, leaving “Sith” far behind with $2.9 million at 487 and a 52% decline; “Sith’s” Blighty cume has hit nearly $66 million.

“Mr. and Mrs. Smith” also led in Australia with $4.7 million at 356 engagements, representing Fox’s sixth biggest opening ever in that market. Mexico saw solid grosses with $3.6 million at 824 for Fox’s biggest launch ever; Taiwan’s $3.6 million at 178 amounted to Fox’s second highest debut.

Fox also reported impressive “Smith” openers in Brazil with $1.6 million at 401 playdates, Hong Kong with $1.2 million at 68, Thailand with $1.2 million at 250, the Philippines with $920,000 at 120, Sweden with $850,000 at 82 and Singapore with $720,000 at 55.

“Smith’s” solid opening numbers — which won’t include key European markets such as France, Germany and Spain until later this summer — underline Pitt’s impressive appeal at the foreign box office. “Troy” generated sensational overseas cume of $360 million and “Ocean’s Twelve” totaled $237 million offshore.

Still, overall offshore biz has badly lagged the same period last year, as distribs have mostly shied away from going up against the final “Star Wars” saga. In the same frame of 2004, the soph sesh of “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” grossed $66.4 million in foreign markets and the third weekend of “The Day After Tomorrow” took in $33.4 million internationally.

Distribs remain hopeful that the foreign B.O. will heat up in the next few weeks thanks to holdover “Smith” biz and the day-and-date openings of “Batman Begins” Wednesday and “War of the Worlds” on June 29.

Even after four weeks, “Revenge of the Sith” still has some gas in the tank, but its biz likely will slide sharply as the screen count continues to drop in the coming weeks. “Sith” led in France with $3.6 million at 937 sites, down 41%, and in Germany with $3.1 million at 1,162, down 43%; French cume has hit $47 million while the Teuton total has passed $42 million.

“Sith” finished second in Oz with $1.5 million at 444, off 43%, for a $23.5 million territorial total. In Spain, “Sith” slid 36% to $1.4 million at 495 to bring the Spanish cume to nearly $21 million.

With “Sith,” “Mr. and Mrs. Smith,” “Kingdom of Heaven” and “Robots” all performing well, Fox Intl. has surpassed $900 million this year in overseas grosses.

‘City’ sails in Italy

Miramax’s soph sesh of “Sin City” declined 47% in the U.K. to $1.8 million; it led in Italy with $750,000 on a 30% decline. The offshore cume for “Sin” has hit $25 million in 18 markets, led by $8.7 million in Blighty, $4.2 million in France and $3.2 million in Italy.

BVI’s “The Pacifier” remained a sturdy performer with $3.9 million, including $1.6 million at 400 in its French launch — double “Daddy Day Care.” Foreign cume for the Vin Diesel laffer has topped $73 million, $38 million short of the domestic performance.

“The Interpreter” continued to rack up respectable numbers, opening in second in France with $2.1 million at 430 playdates for Mars. The Nicole Kidman vehicle has cumed $72.1 million offshore, more than $1 million better than its domestic total.

BVI’s “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” opened in second in Germany with $2.7 million at 450, 60% better than “Galaxy Quest,” and with $275,000 at 60 in Austria. “Guide” has cumed $32.6 million internationally.

Sony’s “The Longest Yard” declined 41% in its soph sesh in Australia to $1.45 million at 258 for a $4.7 million Oz total. The laffer’s second Mexican frame slid 45% to finish third with $425,000 at 260 for a $1.6 million cume.

Sony’s “Kung Fu Hustle” opened mildly in France with $925,000 at 339 engagements in France, while its soph seshes took in $355,000 at 203 in Spain and $335,000 at 170 in Germany. Foreign cume for “Hustle” has topped $72 million.

“Madagascar” grossed $3.1m at 587 locations in a dozen markets to $11.8 million. Its launch in Hungary led the market with $430,000 at 35 cinemas.

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