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King's International Reign Continues

December 30th, 2003

In just a dozen days of release, Lord of the Rings: Return of the King has already accumulated nearly half a billion dollars. And it is still going strong. This week it commanded $84 million from 38 markets, including $12.5 million from both the U.K. and Germany. It already has more than half the total box office of both its predecessors, and it has yet to open in major markets like Japan and Italy. Internationally, Return of the King has pulled in $268 million, just behind fourth place The Matrix Revolutions for the year and 33rd all time. Worldwide, it has $490 million and that's good enough for fourth for the year and 32nd place all-time. By next week, it will be in the top 20 in both.

Finding Nemo continued to perform strongly against Return of the King's competition. Its weekly catch actually increased to $26.3 million, up about $4 million from last week. It is not surprising that it continued its impressive run in countries like Japan where Return of the King has not opened. But it is Finding Nemo's ability to draw an audience in countries in which it is in direct competition that's most impressive. For instance, in France Finding Nemo's fourth weekend haul was $6.6 million compared to Return of the King's $9 million in its second weekend. Its international total also crossed a major milestone hitting $409 million; Finding Nemo is only the 12th film to do so. And it is less than $50 million from entering the top ten all-time, claiming top spot for the year and top spot all-time for an animated movie. Worldwide is has earned just shy of $750 million, which is already the best result for the year, surpassing The Matrix Reloaded. It is now just $40 million from over taking The Lion King for biggest animated movie of all-time and just $50 million from pushing Star Wars out of the top ten.

Like the previous film, Love Actually's weekend figure was up from last week to $7.6 million. With strong openings in Australia, incredible holdovers in Germany and Spain and 12 more countries to open in, Love Actually should cross $200 million worldwide before its run is over.

The last two film in the top five were new entries on the list. Scary Movie 3 took advantage of openings in France and Russia to place fourth with $6.0 million. It is unlikely, however, that the film will match its domestic totals on the international market.

Like the previous movie, Freaky Friday used several debuts to help place it in the top five with $4.9 million. And while it should be buoyed by the holiday season, it too will have a hard time matching its domestic totals internationally.

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Source: Variety

Filed under: International Box Office, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Finding Nemo, The Matrix Reloaded, The Matrix Revolutions, Freaky Friday, Scary Movie 3, Love Actually