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‘Torrente 4’ smashes Spanish records

Best bow ever for Warner Bros. in Spain

Santiago Segura’s 3D “Torrente 4: Lethal Crisis” ran up the biggest-ever opening for a Spanish film on home turf, grossing €8.4 million ($11.6 million) last weekend.

The blockbusting take is a record in Spain for distrib Warner Bros., which unspooled the comedy on 665 prints, WB’s biggest ever for a Spanish film, said Pablo Nogueroles, managing director of Warner Bros. Pictures Intl. Spain.

Torrente 4’s” trawl is the country’s fourth-biggest first weekend for any movie after “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End” and “The Da Vinci Code,” both of which scored $12.6 million, and “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest” at $12.3 million, according to Rentrak Spain.

“Torrente 4” is directed, written and produced by Segura who also reprises his starring role as scumbag cop Jose Luis Torrente. His failures — sexism, racism and homophobia head a long list — nail Spaniards’ fears of their own backwardness, compared with the rest of the developed world.

“Torrente” has been optioned for a remake by New Line in the U.S. and La Petite Reine in France.

Sold abroad by FilmSharks Intl., “Torrente 4” was produced by Amiguetes Entertainment, Antena 3 Films and Bowfinger Films Intl. Centering on Torrente’s incarceration and flailing attempts to engineer his own prison break, “Torrente 4’s” B.O. perf was slightly higher than expectations, driven by positive word-of-mouth and Segura’s unflagging flair at promotion on TV, printed press and by Twitter. The trailer got a muscular push on broadcaster Antena 3 and other TV outlets.

“This is great for the Spanish film industry, for the Spanish box office, for everybody,” said Arturo Guillen, managing director of Rentrak Spain.

Total admissions plunged 10% in Spain last year, dented by a poor perf by local films. With “Torrente 4,” local pics’ prospects look brighter this year.