October 26, 2009 / 3:06 AM / 10 years ago

Overseas box office still high on "Up"

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - The listless pre-holiday box-office season overseas wound down over the weekend with “Up” claiming the No. 1 spot on the foreign circuit for the fifth time this year.

Characters Russell (L) and Carl Fredricksen pose at the premiere of the Disney-Pixar animated film "Up" in Hollywood, California May 16, 2009. REUTERS/Fred Prouser

Pixar/Disney’s animated feature reaped a relatively modest tally of $19 million from 4,789 screens in 26 territories.

Offshore box-office action overall is certain to surge this week as “This Is It,” the film cobbled together from footage of Michael Jackson rehearsing for his planned comeback tour, rolls out via Sony in 108 overseas markets.

No. 2 for the weekend was Disney’s “G-Force,” an animation title produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, which grabbed $8 million from 3,013 situations in 35 territories for a foreign total of $138.9 million. Its worldwide tally stands at $257.2 million.

Third was Sony’s “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs,” yet another animation outing, which grossed $7 million from 2,905 screens in 50 markets for $43.3 million.

At No. 4 was UGC Distribution’s solo-market entry “Lucky Luke,” which made its No. 1 France debut with 600 playdates for an estimated $6.2 million. The film is a Western, a live-action adaptation of a French comic-book character, a gunslinger (portrayed by Jean Dujardin) charged with cleaning up a small town.

Sony’s “The Ugly Truth” ranked fift with $5.8 million from 2,043 sites in 64 markets. The romantic comedy starring Katherine Heigl and Gerard Butler surpassed an overseas gross of $100 million during the weekend; its total stands at $102.4 million.

Quentin Tarantino’s “Inglourious Basterds,” from the Weinstein Co./Universal, opened at No. 1 in South Africa and drew $4.5 million from 2,640 screens in 50 markets. Overseas total is $173.5 million.

Two pre-Halloween arrivals hit the box office. Mandate International’s “Saw VI” grossed an estimated $5 million from 800 screens in eight territories, including the U.K., where the latest in the horror-thriller franchise opened at No. 2. Universal’s “Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant” premiered in three markets (including a No. 2 Russia bow) for $2.9 million overall from 685 locations.

In its solo-market bow in the U.K., 20th Century Fox’s “Fantastic Mr. Fox” drew $2.6 million from 483 locations, sufficient for a No. 3 market ranking. The animation comedy from director Wes Anderson, based on a Roald Dahl novel, commenced its commercial run after opening the London Film Festival. Among those voicing characters are George Clooney, Bill Murray and Meryl Streep.

Playing strictly holdover engagements, “Up” took the No. 1 spot in seven territories, including the U.K., for a third straight weekend with $4.8 million from 750 screens, for a market total of $30.3 million. Italy also produced a first-place ranking, as did the Benelux countries, Poland, Sweden and Denmark. With an international tally of $324.2 million, the latest Pixar animation title in 3D sprinted past the $309 million international gross racked up by its predecessor, 2008’s “WALL-E.”

“Up,” with an opening in Japan set for early December, still lags by $90.8 million the international total accumulated in 2007 by Pixar’s “Ratatouille.” The worldwide gross for “Up”stands at $617 million.

Editing by SheriLinden at Reuters

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