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Dark Knight ‘Rises’ to top overseas

Film more than doubles predecessor's global debut

While news of the July 20 shooting in Aurora, Colo., at a midnight screening of “The Dark Knight Rises” had a ripple effect overseas, causing Warner Bros. to withhold box office totals over the weekend worldwide, the studio confirmed on July 23 that the film had collected $88 million from 17 day-and-date global markets on 7,173 screens — more than double it predecessor’s international debut.

In response to the shootings, Warners canceled several international premieres of the tentpole, including those in Paris, Mexico and Japan. It now plans to move forward with the expansion of the pic as scheduled, broadening the film to 40 additional markets — including Brazil, France, Germany, Japan, Mexico and Russia — starting July 25.

Top market for “TDKR” in the most recent session was the U.K., where local chains Odeon and Vue Cinemas said in separate statements that — similar to U.S. exhibs — they would introduce additional security at “Dark Knight” screenings. The pic earned $22.5 million in Britain, including $1.6 million from Imax screens.

In South Korea, the film took in $15.7 million, while Australia contributed $15.5 million.

The Batman franchise hasn’t been hugely popular with overseas audiences; the prior film, “The Dark Knight,” is the only $1 billion global grosser for which the domestic total ($588.3 million) contributed more of the worldwide haul than the international cume ($468.6 million). That earlier film earned $41.5 million during its debut weekend in 2008, from 21 overseas markets.

Fox’s fourth “Ice Age” installment, “Continental Drift,” came in second over the weekend, with a boffo $56.3 million. The pic has cumed a fantastic $440.4 million internationally.

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