‘Harry Potter’ Producer Sees ‘Paddington’ Nab $8 Million in U.K. over Opening Weekend

LONDON – Kids’ pic “Paddington,” which is produced by “Harry Potter” and “Gravity” producer David Heyman, took £5.11 million ($8.05 million) at the U.K. box office over its opening weekend. The Weinstein Company opens the pic in the U.S. Jan. 16.

Paul King’s film, based on Michael Bond’s stories, opened across 520 sites boasting a screen average of £9,889 ($15,578). It tops the U.K. box office charts.

Take was distributor-producer Studiocanal’s biggest opening weekend at the U.K. box office. Pic was fully financed by Studiocanal in partnership with Heyman’s Heyday Films.

Heyman said: “Paddington’s famous label says ‘Please look after this bear. Thank you’ — and we are thrilled that the British public have taken this to heart and have responded with such warmth and joy to his arrival in the cinema.”

Studiocanal chairman Olivier Courson commented: “It was a great challenge for Studiocanal to compete in the family space with the best of U.S. studio productions. I’m so proud of the film, which, thanks to David Heyman and Paul King combines a very British humor with a universal, incredible adventure ripe with beautiful comedy and emotion.”

Studiocanal opens the pic in France on Dec. 3, Germany on Dec. 4 and Australia on Dec. 11.

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