Euro cold spell can’t slow ‘Ghost’

'Mission Impossible' sequel again tops o'seas B.O.

In a Feb. 3-5 weekend that saw much of northern Europe digging out from under snowstorms, Paramount’s “Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol” collected $24.3 million, notching its third-straight frame atop the overseas box office (and fifth overall at the top) and pushing the pic’s international take past the $400 million mark.

With a worldwide cume of $626 million, “Ghost Protocol” is the highest-grossing pic globally for Tom Cruise, whose previous best, “War of the Worlds,” grossed $591.7 million in 2005.

“Ghost Protocol” is playing in 64 overseas markets, including China, where the film grossed around $20 million in three days. That reps a 46% gain on the film’s two-day opening the previous weekend, with a current local cume of $55.7 million.

“Ghost Protocol” benefited from a stockpile of screens in China — approximately 3,000 — compared with other markets like Italy, where the pic screened at 367 locales for a weekend total of $1.6 million, dropping a fine 47% in its second outing, bringing its local cume to $5.5 million.

Also performing well overseas, 20th Century Fox’s teen thriller “Chronicle” debuted in 3 3 territories for a three-day gross of $12.9 million. It bowed best in the U.K., where it topped the chart, at $3.5 million, followed by Australia and Russia, which contributed $3.1 million and $2 million, respectively. Pic bowed at No. 1 in Oz, and in second-place in Russia.

Cold weather in Spain was a key factor in that market’s so-so results, especially for family films like Disney’s “The Muppets,” which performed slightly under expectations, collecting just $1 million on 360 screens. “The Muppets” collected a reported weekend total of $3.5 million, pushing the pic’s offshore cume to $30.2 million.

Emilio Mayorga contributed to this report.

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