Exhibs analyze B.O.

Hoping 'Matrix' will bring in sluggish auds

The hills are alive with the sound of overseas auds fleeing a gaggle of spring turkeys, although exhibs were hoping the tide could turn over the weekend, with the international rollout of Hollywood star vehicles such as “The Matrix,” “Notting Hill,” “Entrapment” and “Analyze This.”

In the U.K., another poor week of trading has exhibs praying Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts in “Notting Hill” will impact on Blighty B.O. over the next few weeks. Pic goes nationwide on May 28.

‘True’ rebound

In the meantime, there was a glimmer of sunshine for Clint Eastwood’s death row drama “True Crime,” which finally showed signs of life as the best performer of the week’s U.K. openers. Mike Barker’s Reese Witherspoon starrer “Best Laid Plans” played on twice as many screens in its foreign preem, but mustered a mere $600,000 despite positive reviews.

Jackie Chan chopsocky “Twin Dragons” managed only $360,000 from 191, but that was at least better than Michael Winner’s critically panned dark comedy, “Parting Shots,” which tanked despite the luminous cast of Ben Kingsley, Diana Rigg, Bob Hoskins and John Cleese.

“Forces Of Nature” petered out 31% in its soph session for a 13-day cume of $2.7 million. “I Still Know What You Did Last Summer” was down 38%.

Cannes on the street

Cannes capers dominated the French cine scene last week, with reports of scathing reviews and general booing, catcalling and hissing at screenings of “Pola X.” Now shaggy dog of the week, the poor pic is not faring well in local release, reaping a mere $334,242 on 167.

Not so for the crowd-pleasing “The Barber Of Siberia,” which cut a swathe to the top French B.O. spot.

Close behind, runner-up “Le Derriere” sagged 11% in its 3rd week, while cult sci-fi smash “Cube” was up 5% in week three, driven by great word of mouth and a terrific campaign.

The legend of Eastwood continues to flag in France, with “True Crime” up just 2% for a $4,218,156 cume. Pics to watch for now include Pedro Almodovar’s “All About My Mother,” which blasted off for a first-day total of $233,833 on 165 and “Entrapment,” which is currently sitting on a $2.7 million cume from Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and Puerto Rico and is set to bow across France, Holland, Portugal, and Spain after a friendly Cannes reception.

Oz ‘Forces’

Down Under, “Forces Of Nature” is glued to the top spot in its second week, tipping the international cume to $14.12 million. “Matrix,” now in its sixth glorious week for an Oz cume of $12.2 million, was set to roll out across Brazil, Colombia, Chile, Hong Kong, Mexico and Thailand, but not before netting another $886,301 locally, bringing the international cume to $22.95 million.

Eastwood’s “Crime” fared poorly in its Oz debut, reaping a disappointing A$250,211 (U.S. $165,139) for an international cume of $11,947,563.

However, “The Craic” and “American History X” are doing compelling business for a three-week A$4 million (U.S. $2.64 million) cume and a two-week A$750,000 ($495,000) cume respectively.

Oz tops

Oz also remains the top territory to date for “The Waterboy” at $7.1 million cume, with the U.K. 2nd on $4.1 million for a $20.6 million foreign cume, and Turkey set to bow.

Other pics skedded to bow imminently include “She’s All That” in the U.K. (international cume $3.9 million), “The Faculty” in Korea ($19 million), “Mulan” in India ($183 million), “The Other Sister” in Spain ($2.6 million), “My Favorite Martian” across Argentina and German-speaking Europe ($3.7 million), “I Still Know …” in Italy ($40.8 million), “8MM” in Poland and Singapore ($45.4 million) and “Cruel Intentions” in Mexico and Korea ($4.9 million).