Mexican box office bright for ‘Knight’

Batman film brings the biggest bow of the year

MEXICO CITY — “The Dark Knight” tied up the competition at the Mexican B.O. last weekend, taking in 68.2 million pesos ($6.74 million) for the strongest debut of the year. Pic is distributed by Warner Bros. Mexico with the title “Batman: El caballero de la noche.”

The opening-day result beat the bows of “The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian,” “Kung Fu Panda” and “Ironman,” which opened with $6.5 million, $6.4 million and $5.9 million, respectively.

However, unlike the U.S. and Canadian markets, which saw weekend records fall, the pic didn’t come close to the Mexico weekend record held by “Spider-Man 3,” which opened to $12.9 million. That film was Mexico’s top grosser last year, earning roughly $35.2 million.

The distributor noted that some 1.6 million moviegoers stood in long lines to buy tickets to the long-awaited sequel to “Batman Begins.” Many were drawn by the chance to see Heath Ledger’s final performance as sinister ubervillain the Joker.

In an effort to build local buzz, WB brought the Caped Crusader’s motorcycle, dubbed the Batpod in the film, down to Mexico, where it will be on display through Aug. 17.

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