Holdovers hold on

Vets reign in Europe; 'Hustle' muscles Asia

“Alexander” triumphed in South Korea and Sony’s Chinese-lingo “Kung Fu Hustle” continued to dominate other parts of Asia last weekend, while the B.O. in Europe was starved of new product and had to rely on holdovers including “The Incredibles,” “Ocean’s Twelve” and “Shrek 2.”

While the U.S. biz is being powered by “Meet the Fockers,” the ribald laffer has been released abroad only in Australia, Singapore and Malaysia. “Fockers” rustled up a socko $11.8 million in eight days in Oz, but its opening weekend figures in the two Asian markets weren’t available due to the Monday public holiday. Sony reported that its action comedy “Kung Fu Hustle” beat “Fockers” as it retained pole position in its soph session in both countries.

Weekend champ “The Incredibles” drew an estimated $21.3 million from around 7,000 screens in 49 territories, propelling cume past domestic’s to $274.9 million. Pixar toon garnered a terrif $9.2 million in eight days Down Under. Incredibly, the pic was No. 1 in its seventh outing in the U.K., fetching $2.5 million (jumping by 140% during school vacation), upping the territory total to $53 million. Superhero saga stayed on top for the third straight weekend in Mexico, hauling in $11.9 million.

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“Ocean’s Twelve” made off with a projected $20.9 million from 4,900 prints in 49 countries, boosting cume to $107.3 million. Crime caper stole $1 million on 104 screens in Taiwan (trailing “Hustle’s” second weekend), in local currency 9% below the first edition’s preem, and a top-ranked $527,000 on 69 in South Africa, 5% ahead of “Ocean’s Eleven.” Star-driven pic was No. 1 again in its third stanzas in Germany, banking $15.2 million to date, and Spain, where it’s amassed $10.1 million.

‘Alexander’ victorious

“Alexander” captured an estimated $4.4 million on 270 in South Korea, including previews, in part reflecting the market clout of exhib/distrib CJ Entertainment. Oliver Stone’s epic drummed up $1.8 million in Germany, off just 6%, pocketing $5.8 million in 11 days. Cume hit $43.5 million in 26 territories, heading for north of $100 million with most of Europe, Japan and Oz ahead.

“Kung Fu Hustle” grabbed $10.2 million from 1,095 screens in six Asian markets and cume topped $35 million. Based on a sample of 48 theaters in Japan, Sony projected the pic bowed there with a fine $3.2 million on 368 screens in a traditionally soft weekend before kids go on vacation. It was a solid No. 2 behind local animated phenom “Howl’s Moving Castle.”

Through its second weekends, “Hustle” has rustled up an acrobatic $14.2 million in China (down 42% from its record-breaking preem), $6.2 million in Hong Kong, $7.4 million in Taiwan, $2.2 million in Singapore and $1.8 million in Malaysia.

‘Aviator’ soars in U.K.

“The Aviator” continued to draw crowds at its London platform, earning an estimated $114,000; 10-day tally is an impressive $311,000. “House of Flying Daggers” has trapped a superb $3 million in eight days in Blighty, lifting cume to $63.4 million.

“National Treasure” dug up $11.5 million, spurred by South Korea’s estimated $2.6 million bow, a local record for BVI, toppling “King Arthur.” Nicolas Cage starrer’s cume hit $70 million, including the U.K.’s sturdy $6.9 million in eight days.

“The Polar Express” puffed along to $101.6 million after minting $8.3 million from holdovers at the weekend in 59 countries.

“Shrek 2” clung to top spot in its third chapter in Italy, devouring $4.1 million (falling by a mild 25%), driving the territory cume to a juicy $20 million and the offshore total to an estimated $464.3 million.

“Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Phantom of the Opera” is resonating better in Oz than in most Euro markets, orchestrating $2.3 million in eight days. Musical has rung up an estimated $12.4 million in the U.K. and an exceptional $11.4 million in Korea.