'Perfume' gross in Germany wafts to $43 mil

LONDON — Spearheaded by the boffo success in Germany of soccer doc “Deutschland: Ein Sommermarchen,” homegrown fare performed well across Europe this weekend.

“Deutschland” held the Teutonic top spot for the third weekend running with $3,726,956 at 721 screens. Drop-ping just 34%, Sonke Wortmann’s film has now raced to over $21 million in Germany.

Another German pic, “Perfume: The Story of a Murderer,” continued its good run on home turf — the pic dipped just 27% in its sixth frame to hold second spot with $1,924,774 at 823. Cume in Germany stands at almost $43 million.

Heartwarming Bavarian laffer “Wer Fruher Stirbt ist Langer Tot” is also doing well. It has banked $6,230,253 in 11 weeks for indie distrib Movienet.

In Blighty, 11th-placed Bollywood pic “Don” from distrib UTV Communications opened boldly with $545,324 at just 51 for a chart-topping screen average of $10,692. U.K. bookers are delighted with the bow for the Shahrukh Khan-starrer, which should show good legs now that Ramadan is over. A final cume approaching the $2 million mark is projected.

“The History Boys” held well in its soph sesh in Blighty, dipping just 20% to take $1,203,653 at 300. The strong holdover was impressive given exhibs consider the pic “more of a Monday-to-Thursday movie than a weekend multiplex filler.” Brit bookers expect “The History Boys” to cume at least $7.5 million in the territory.

U.S. pics “The Grudge 2″ ($1,456,740 at 331) and “Marie Antoinette” ($534,694 at 179) made their Euro debuts in the U.K. this weekend. Neither result set bookers’ pulses racing.

Stephen Frears’ “The Queen” followed up on its strong perf on home turf in Blighty ($12.8 million after six weeks) with a promising bow in France. Helped by favorable reviews from the French critics, the third-placed opener scored 252,212 admissions from 212 in its first five days (Oct. 18-22) and posted the best screen average of any film on release.

Second-placed local pic “Day of Glory” slipped just 21% in its fourth frame and held second spot.

French director Elie Chouraqui’s “O, Jerusalem” opened meekly in Gaul with just 114,276 admissions at 294 for sixth spot. Critics did not enjoy the film, a Franco-Greek-American-Anglo-Israeli co-production about two friends — one Jewish, one Muslim — whose relations becomes strained after the creation of Israel in 1945.

In Italy fashionista comedy “The Devil Wears Prada” slipped just 8% to $3.3 million at 420 in its soph sesh to hold top spot. Powered by very strong perfs across Europe, “Prada” has now scored a whopping $104 million in international territories.

Giuseppe Tornatore’s third-placed “The Unknown” received strong reviews from the Italian press when it preemed at Rome Film Fest, propelling it to a better than expected inaugural weekend of $938,000 on 297. Medusa Film’s other big Rome fest pic, “N (Napoleon and Me),” had a strong weekend, netting $374,000 on 207 screens, up 14% in its sophomore weekend. Despite the strength of these three pics, Italian biz dipped 6% on the last weekend and is stuck in the doldrums.

Mexican helmer Guillermo del Toro’s “Pan’s Labyrinth” held top spot in Spain with $1.3 million from 301. But it was Bigas Luna’s opener “Yo Soy la Juani,” which stole the weekend. The pic about a suburban teen who dreams of Hollywood stardom took $822,727 at 185, which was $150,000 over local exhib’s expectations and good enough for fifth spot. The film has generated a lot of buzz since a casting stunt that saw thousands of Madrid teenagers queue for a chance to win a role in the film.

Another Spanish pic — “Los Borgia” — held third spot in its third frame and has now done just short of $6 million.

In the Netherlands, big budget local pic “Black Book” took top spot in its sixth frame with $623,535 at 94 and has now scored $5,729,841 on home turf. The result was particularly impressive as Paul Verhoeven’s WWII thriller faced stiff competish from second-placed “Prada.”

BVI’s coast guard thriller “The Guardian” is struggling to find auds in Europe. The pic, which toplines Kevin Costner, opened meekly in Germany ($1,066,772 at 503, fourth place) and the U.K. ($1,556,843 at 355, fifth.) Bookers in both territories report little interest in the pic’s subject matter.

Additional reporting by Esther de Prado (Spain), Liza Klaussmann (France), Ed Meza (Germany), Melanie Goodfellow (the Netherlands) and Bernhard Warner (Italy).

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