‘Grease’ paints B.O.

Reissue clicks o'seas; World Cup taking toll

While most heavy hitters continued to steer clear of the World Cup-whacked overseas box office, “Grease” was the word in Singapore and South Africa, where UIP staged the foreign debuts of pic’s 20th anniversary reissue.

“Godzilla,” “US Marshals” “Blues Brothers 2000” and “City of Angels” extricated themselves anti-climactically in Australia, Japan, Germany and Brazil, respectively.

“Grease” wowed a great $86,678 from 12 Singaporean screens and a good $143,371 from 46 South African sites, while the Dutch seemed more interested in soccer and handed the John Travolta-Olivia Newton-John starrer just $45,915 from 35 houses.

Frame’s other foreign debutante, Polygram’s “Barney’s Great Adventure,” was dandy in Scotland, nabbing a good $44,495 from 17 screens, but came off second best to “Grease” in Singapore, with a mere $11,766 from 11 prints.

Sizing up Oz

After devouring a solid $2.3 million in previews Down Under, Sony’s “Godzilla” (four market cume: $9.8 million) swallowed a tepid $1.5 million in its official Oz debut in 301 theaters.

That’s Sony’s fourth largest Oz bow, behind “Jerry Maguire,” “Men In Black” and “As Good As It Gets,” but still top spot and about double the second-ranked sophomore, BVI’s “The Horse Whisperer.”

UIP’s “Deep Impact” (cume: $90.3 million) capitalized on a public holiday to rise 38% in Germany (local tally: $16.3 million), where stablemate UIP’s “Blues Brothers 2000” (cume: $11.3 million) took in a so-so $1.4 million from 410 German houses (plus $162,262 from 48 Austrian screens), BVI’s “Welcome to Sarajevo” was received coolly (with $60,000 from 52 screens) and New Line’s “Boogie Nights” (cume: $14.3 million) rose 12% after last frame’s soft bow.

‘Angels’ on high

Warner’s “City of Angels” (cume: $11.1 million) overcame World Cup mania and bowed top spot in Brazil with a good $1.1 million from 127 houses, but stablemate “U.S. Marshals” (cume: $40.2 million) marched captured a $750,073 from 116 prints in Japan. New Line’s “Lost in Space” (cume: $10.2 million) zapped a lively $610,860 from 49 Taiwanese theaters and UIP’s “Mercury Rising” (cume: $25.8 million) wowed Malaysia, with $201,722 from 39 sites.

Polygram’s “The Gingerbread Man” (cume: $1.1 million) took an OK $132,824 from 40 Oz sites, while nabbing $57,480 from 12 in Belgium and $14,936 from four houses in Hong Kong, behind stablemate “The Big Lebowski” (cume: $15.6 million), which bowled a good $21,783 from two screens.

New Line’s “The Wedding Singer” (cume: $16.8 million) crooned $77,121 from 20 screens in the Philippines, while dipping only 5% to retain top spot in its sophomore sesh in the UK, where Polygram’s “A Thousand Acres” (cume: $1.7 million) stiffed, with a mere $61,180 from 8 prints. Also in the UK, UIP’s “The Apostle” (four territory tally: $183,897) sainted $73,073 from 31 prints, behind Fox’s “Soul Food” with just $93,774 from 50 sites.

‘Great’ in Asia

Fox’s “Great Expectations” charmed South Korea, with $142,004 from 16 sites, and Hong Kong, with $39,492 from five screens.

BVI’s “The Horse Whisperer” (cume: $3.2 million) stumbled in Thailand, with just $28,000 from 22 theaters, while dipping 30% in second rounds in Oz and Brazil, while Sony’s “Swept from the Sea” (cume: $590,164) trickled $59,000 from 38 French houses, Polygram’s “The Borrowers” took a measly $4,149 from five Greek screens and UIP’s “Red Corner” (cume: $13.3 million) managed a solid $61,501 from 21 prints in Israel.