‘Poseidon’ cracks ‘Code’

Ship disaster remake tops foreign B.O.

“Poseidon” landed its first box office victory over the weekend, edging “The Da Vinci Code” in a subdued international market. Pic, which continues to show more traction overseas than domestically, took in $9.9 million from 4,000 prints in 49 markets during the weekend.

With the World Cup in full swing and minimal competition from new pics, “Poseidon” served as a counterprogramming draw with first-place launches in Russia, Brazil and Turkey.

Total was the lowest for a No. 1 pic since the second frame in March, when “The Pink Panther” led the international market with $9.2 million.

Overall biz for the frame lagged considerably from typical levels: “Batman Begins” led the same sesh a year ago with $26.7 million, followed by “Madagascar” with $18.1 million; in 2004, the fourth weekend of “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” won with $40.2 million, followed by the soph sesh of “Shrek 2” with $33.2 million.

“Poseidon” lifted its foreign cume to $84.7 million — $27 million ahead of domestic. Warner execs have been counting on foreign markets to compensate for the disappointing Stateside perf and opted for a gradual release strategy. Pic opens in Scandinavia next weekend and Germany and Austria on July 13, four days after the World Cup concludes.

“Poseidon” posted its top figures in the booming Russian market with $2.58 million at 371, 11% better than “The Day After Tomorrow”; in France, with a 29% decline in its second frame to $1 million at 583; and in Brazil, where its $1 million launch at 291 was on par with that of “Pearl Harbor.” It bowed in second in Belgium with $400,000 at 63 and accounted for 53% of the top-five gross in Turkey with $255,500 at 134.

The sixth weekend of “The Da Vinci Code” showed impressive staying power, with a 36% decline to $9 million at 5,820 engagements in 84 markets. Foreign cume has hit $496 million; worldwide total is $701.5 million, making “Code” the 22nd film to cross the $700 million mark.

“Code” stayed stellar in Japan with a 24% decline to $2.4 million at 764 playdates for a first-place finish and a $68 million cume. Pic came in fourth in the U.K. with $910,000 at 386 and led in a sleepy German market despite declining 53% to $640,000 at 896.

BVI’s “Cars” showed respectable traction with $7.7 million at 2,230 screens in 18 markets, led by its second frame in France with $2.3 million at 850, declining only 10%, and its third weekend in Australia with $1.3 million at 263, off 28%. Disney/Pixar toon scored No. 1 openings in Poland with $827,000 at 120, in Holland with $450,000 at 125, in Colombia with $327,000 at 55, in Chile with $231,000 at 50 and in Indonesia with $160,000 at 50.

With many schoolchildren going on vacation this week in international markets, BVI is hoping to see strong holdover biz for “Cars” plus solid launches next weekend in Argentina, Brazil, Japan, Mexico and Portugal.

Last weekend’s international winner, “X-Men: The Last Stand,” took a 58% hit and grossed $6 million at 2,897 sites. The decline wasn’t a surprise, as the number of playdates declined by more than half after a month of play for the sequel, which has cumed $192.4 million on the foreign side to nearly match the final international take of “X2.”

BVI’s “Scary Movie 4” remained reliable with $5.4 million at 1,200 playdates, including first-place launches in France with $2.5 million at 650, Spain with $1.9 million at 400 and Singapore with $214,000 at 25. The spoof has cumed $76.2 million overseas and $166 million worldwide; the franchise’s cumulative gross is nearing $800 million worldwide.

“Over the Hedge” also grossed $5.4 million, at 1,358 engagements in 19 markets, with a majority coming from its Oz launch of $3 million at 243, matching Sony’s day-and-date opening of “Click.” The Adam Sandler comedy prevailed in New Zealand with $365,000 to $262,000 for “Hedge.”

“Hedge,” which has cumed $25.1 million overseas, will launch next weekend in the U.K., with openings the following frame in France, Germany and Japan.

UIP’s “The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift” showed moderate traction with $4.4 million at 952 in a dozen markets, led by a U.K. first-place slot with $2 million at 413, down 39% in its second weekend. Pic’s soph sesh in Australia slid 58% to $960,000 at 188.

Fox’s “The Omen” continued its fast fade with a 58% decline in its third frame to $3.8 million at 1,836 playdates. Remake has scared up $55 million internationally and $107 million worldwide since its June 6 launch.

UIP saw lukewarm overseas results from “The Break-Up” with $3.6 million at 1,025 in 11 territories, including a third-place French launch of $1.1 million at 300 and a winning Belgian opening of $500,000 at 44. The comedy’s soph sesh in Mexico declined 30% to $690,000 at 175 to finish behind the opening of “Just My Luck.”

Warner Bros.’ “The Lake House” scored second place in the U.K. with $1.5 million at 343 in its first overseas launch. UIP’s “Mission: Impossible III” fell 52% to $1 million at 1,200 for an international total of $205.5 million, with Japan and China yet to open. Fox’s “Garfield: A Tale of Two Kitties” also took in $1 million at 444 in four markets.

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