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Charlie Savors Sweet Victory

August 3rd, 2005

Thanks almost entirely to a massive opening in the U.K., Charlie and the Chocolate Factory was able to top the international box office charts with $19.8 million on 2300 screens in 15 markets over the weekend. It's biggest draw was in the U.K. at $14.1 million on 531 screens, which was more than the total made by the second place movie. That is on par with War of the Worlds's opened a couple of weeks ago and should lead to a $40 million to $45 million total in that market alone. And that should come as a bit of a relief to the studio since the film was monstrously expensive to make and it will need a strong showing internationally to make a profit. Other openings this weekend include a first place, $1.43 million debut in just 47 theatres in Mexico, which was more than double its nearest competitor. Holdovers continued to help Charlie and the Chocolate Factory's international campaign adding $2.37 million during its third weekend in France to its $12.8 million running tally there. Overall the film now has $36.3 million internationally and could finish its run north of $300 million.

After two close victories in the past two weeks, Madagascar slipped to second with $13.3 million. But on the bright side, it did become only the third film from 2005 to reach $200 million internationally, a feat it accomplished midweek; it also became the third film to reach $400 million worldwide. The film's best markets were both holdovers as the film earned $3.3 million in both the U.K. and Germany for totals of $28.8 million and $27.4 million respectively. On the other hand, it fell from second to fifth with $536,000 in South Korea losing 80% of its box office in the process. Madagascar doesn't have another major opening till Japan in mid-August and finishes its run in Italy, (and other smaller markets) in September.

No major openings and steep declines pushed the Fantastic Four from second place to third place with $11.4 million on 4225 screens. It's three biggest markets all saw greater than 50% drop-offs, down 54% in the U.K. with $2.9 million on 409 screens, 58% in France with $2.3 million on 635, and 51% in Spain with $1.1 million on 425. The latter was the third weekend in that market while the first two where both sophomore sessions. The film's international running tally has hit $102.5 million, the tenth film from 2005 to reach the $100 million mark and the fifth film from Fox to reach that milestone. That's even more impressive when you consider comic book movies tend to be a tough sell internationally.

Mr. and Mrs. Smith popped back into the top five mainly thanks to its first place, $6.36 million opening in France, which was the majority of the film's $12.0 million haul for a $163.1 million international total. I realize I said pretty much the same thing last week and it turn out not to be true, but I'm sure after all the numbers are in it won't slip out of the top five this time. The film's other big market over the weekend was Germany where it remained in second place with $3.76 million, down 30.5% Overall the movie has brought in $176.6 million internationally and is headed to $200 million internationally and maybe even $400 million worldwide.

It was a milestone week for War of the Worlds as it became just the second film of 2005 to reach $300 million internationally. In comparison, by this time last year there were five $300 million movies at the international box office, (The Day After Tomorrow, Hatty Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Shrek 2, Spider-Man 2, and Troy.) The weekend saw the film add $10 million to its $311 million total, mostly from holdovers in the U.K. at $1.9 million, France at $1.6 million, and Japan at $1.4 million.

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Filed under: War of the Worlds, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Madagascar, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Fantastic Four