Box Office: Foreign Audiences Can’t Rescue ‘In the Heart of the Sea’

In the Heart of the Sea
Courtesy of Warner Bros.

In the Heart of the Sea” is looking for foreign audiences to rescue it after a disastrous U.S. debut this weekend. Sadly, the whaling drama’s S.O.S. was only dimly recognized by overseas crowds.

The Warner Bros. film added a mediocre $12.6 million from 8,775 locations in 52 countries, bringing its global total to $50.4 million. That’s a weak result for a picture that cost nearly $100 million to bring to the big screen. The film did best in Korea ($1.9 million), Russia ($1.4 million), Italy ($1.1 million) and Mexico ($1.1 million).

Ron Howard directs the fact-based drama about the whale attack that inspired “Moby Dick.” The picture has some remaining markets left to open, including the United Kingdom on Dec. 26 and Japan on Jan. 16.

With “In the Heart of the Sea” sinking at the global box office and a week to go before “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” captures the world’s attention, “Surprise -Journey to the West” easily topped charts. The Chinese comedy fantasy earned a leading $17 million.

Lionsgate’s “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2” captured second place. The final film in the popular franchise picked up $15.4 million from 92 foreign markets. It has made $564.6 million since debuting last month.

Disney and Pixar’s “The Good Dinosaur” took third place with $14.3 million, bringing its worldwide haul to $167.9 million, while Sony and MGM’s “Spectre” added $12.9 million to its $820.6 million global gross for a fifth place finish.

Also of note: “Point Break,” a remake of the 1991 cult favorite, is getting a jump on its Dec. 25 domestic release. The picture earned $12.3 million this weekend from eight Asian markets, pushing its total to $34.5 million. The film did particularly well in China, where the film made $10.2 million. Its backers include the Chinese company DMG Entertainment, an East-West partnership that enabled “Point Break” to score a release in the country’s protectionist market.