Foosball

Best opening for an Argentine pic in history

Making good on its opening day promise and raising the bar for Argentinean cinema, Juan Jose Campanella’s Universal-distribbed 3D animated feature “Foosball” scored Pesos17.7 million ($3.3 million) and 418,280 admissions at Argentina’s box office over July 18-21, the best home-turf first frame ever for an Argentinean movie.

“Foosball” first four-day box office was the fifth-best of any film of any nationality ever, per Universal.

It was made despite icy weather in Argentina and still tough competition from the best that Hollywood can currently offer in terms of animation juggernauts: “Despicable Me 2” and “Monsters University,” though both are holdovers.

“Monsters University” set a 2013 high, bowing June 20 to an opening $5.5 million in Argentina.

“Foosball’s” bow was still, however, 9% up on “Despicable Me 2.”

Released by Universal via UIP in Spain, “Foosball’s” dollar trawl would have been even larger in dollar terms if it were not for inflation that has seen the greenback appreciate nearly 18% against the Argentine peso in the last 12 months.

It comes as a clutch of heavily frontloaded movies are punching near untold figures at the Argentine box office: “Foosball” is one of four movies to top Pesos17 million (around $3 million) in first frames at the Argentine box office this year. Before 2012, it was very rare for even Argentine blockbusters to pass Pesos 10 million in its opening Argentine four days.

Budgeted at $21 million, “Foosball” is also one of the highest profile Argentina-Spain co-productions in history: Argentina’s Jempsa, Spain’s Plural-Jempsa and Antena 3 Films produce. Campanella’s 100 Bares, Catmandu and Convoy Films exec produce.

Universal has grabbed prime box office real estate in Spain, setting a release date of Dec. 20 via Universal Pictures Intl. Spain.

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