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‘No Manches Frida’ Scores Solid Results for Lionsgate’s Local Language Initiative

Lionsgate/Pantelion’s launch of comedy “No Manches Frida” has scored solidly with $4.7 million at 362 locations in the U.S. for an impressive per-screen average of $12,845 for the Labor Day weekend.

“No Manches,” starring Omar Chaparro, Martha Higareda and Mónica Dionne, is the first title to emerge from the Globalgate consortium that Lionsgate and eight international companies launched in May to take advantage of the popularity of local-language titles.

“No Manches,” which was shown in Spanish with English subtitles, is a remake of 2013 German film “Fack ju Göhte.” The film will open in Mexico in two weeks.

For Pantelion — which is backed by Lionsgate and Televisa — it’s the second biggest opening after 2013’s “Instructions Not Included,” which grossed $7.8 million in 348 theaters and totaled $44.4 million, setting a record for a Spanish-language movie in the U.S. market. Pantelion also opened “Un Gallo con Muchos Huevos” with $3.4 million at 395 locations on the same weekend last year with the comedy winding up with more than $9 million by the end of its run.

Globalgate licensed the remake rights from Germany’s Constantin Film to “Fack ju Göhte,” which translates  to”F— You, Goethe.” It centers on a bank robber just out of prison who goes to retrieve the money he stole in order to repay a debt, but finds his friend buried it in a construction site.

The movie set a box office record as the biggest comedy in that market, which was topped by the 2015 German-language sequel.

GlobalGate is producing and distributing local-language films in markets around the world. It is releasing French and Turkish remakes of “Instructions Not Included” later this year with the French version starring Omar Sy.

It’s also developing remakes of “Instructions Not Included” for the Chinese and Indian markets, as well as a Turkish remake of the “Fack ju Göhte” sequel.

GlobalGate was launched by international entertainment executives Paul Presburger, William Pfeiffer and Clifford Werber. Consortium partners include Belga (Benelux), Gaumont (France), Kadokawa (Japan), Lotte (Korea), Nordisk Film (Scandinavia), Televisa/Videocine (Mexico), TME (Turkey) and Tobis (Germany).

Presburger, who remains CEO of Pantelion, told Variety, “The key is finding great stories and then developing them specifically for the local market with modest budgets.”

Presburger noted that “No Manches Friday” saw its daily grosses grow on Saturday and Sunday — an indication that the film will have strong word of mouth.

Lionsgate noted in May that the market share of local language films is expanding in territories around the world, currently topping 90% in India, nearly 60% of China and Turkey, more than 55% in Japan and 50% in Korea. Local language films also comprise more than 40% of the box office in France, 30% in Denmark and a 27% market share in Germany.

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