‘Ghost’ on a mission at o’seas B.O.

Sherlock lands second spot

Paramount’s “Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol” pulled in plenty of holiday bounty at the Christmas weekend overseas box office, dominating with $45.8 million at 7,423 playdates in 47 markets.

The fourth “Mission,” which opened in most markets during the Dec. 16-18 frame, has cumed $144.2 million internationally as of Dec. 26, including $24 million each from Japan and South Korea. Foreign cume for Tom Cruise’s high-octane actioner’s already only $60 million short of the final international total for 2006’s “Mission: Impossible III.”

Other sequels also showed traction, as Warner Bros.’ “Sherlock Holmes: Game of Shadows” landed respectably in the second slot with $22 million at 4,200 venues in 25 territories, led by a $3.7 million Korean launch, a $3.5 million soph sesh in Italy and $2.7 million Christmas weekends in Germany and Blighty. The second “Sherlock” has hit $49 million — led by $14.1 million in the U.K. — with launches coming in Oz, Russia, Spain, Mexico, France and Japan as Warners seeks to match the impressive $291 million foreign cume from the 2009 original.

Fox’s “Alvin & the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked” finished third with $16.5 million at 5,607 screens in 53 markets, led by a $4.1 million French launch, as the kidpic’s foreign cume hit $38.5 million. The “Alvin” pics have been powerful performers outside the U.S., with $140 million in foreign coin for the 2007 original and $220 million for the “Squeakuel.”

French comedy “Intouchables” finished first in Gaul for its eighth consecutive frame for a cume of $132.4 million at 898 for Gaumont.

Sony’s “Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” began its international run day-and-date in Scandinavia along with the U.S. run, and took in $1.6 million, followed by a Brit launch on Boxing Day, bringing the foreign cume to $3 million. The original Swedish “Millenium” trilogy films grossed a combined $220 million worldwide — nearly $200 million of that outside the United States.

David Hayhurst in Paris contributed to this report.

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