2ND UPDATE, SUNDAY, 9:35 AM PT:
We’re still waiting on international estimates from some of the
studios, but in the meantime, here’s the skinny on the Autobot in the
room (and, further down, on the other films that have reported). Michael
Bay’s Transformers: Age Of Extinction has
scored the biggest opening weekend internationally of 2014 with $201.3M
from 37 territories. The previous record holder for the year was X-Men: Days Of Future Past which opened to $172M in late May. If TAOE‘s domestic Sunday estimates hold, it may break $300M worldwide. As my colleague Anita Busch reports, we believe it is the only time in history that a film has opened to $90M+ in the two biggest territories in the world, the U.S. and China.
TAOE was No. 1 in each of the markets where it opened, playing at 10,152 locations. Of those, 4,400 were in China (an exact screen count has not been broken out – although I hear it was on a record 150 IMAX screens there with 19 at the top 20 locations). In the Middle
Kingdom, TAOE bested Iron Man 3 for the biggest opening weekend ever for an imported movie. Early estimates put it at $90M for the frame. That’s double Transformers: Dark Of The Moon in 2011 and a little less than $30M more than IM3‘s $64.5M in 2013. The all-time record holder is still local pic Journey To The West: Conquering The Demons with $92.46M. IMAX had a three-day weekend gross of about $10M in China which was double The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug‘s $4.55M and well outperformed IM3‘s six-day opening weekend of $6.9M. Across all international markets, TOAE delivered $16.6M in IMAX, a record on 266 screens.
Also across all markets, TAOE was up 35% over Dark Of The Moon. It had the 2nd biggest opening of all time in Russia with $21.7M at 1,100 locations. Of that, 3D repped 80% of the total gross. Paramount says the bow is a new benchmark for the studio and is 50% bigger than DOTM. IMAX also had a milestone in Russia where the weekend was worth $2.6M on 34 screens.
Across Asia, where the film was expected to scale new heights, it had big bows in several markets. In Korea,
the movie was the top opener of the year with $21.5M from 1,533
locations. It had 80% market share there where it bowed bigger than Amazing Spider-Man 2 and X-Men: Days Of Future Past. On 12 IMAX screens, it made over $1M. TOAE remains, however, the 2nd best debut for the Transformers franchise – DOTM was slightly higher with $21.8M in 2011. The Philippines
was good for $5.8M from 135 locations – and nearly 100% market share –
to track 21% over the last movie. This was a Paramount and franchise
record with the 3rd biggest opening weekend of all time. Malaysia
was the all-time industry opening with $6.4M from 119 sites. The debut
also marks a new record for Paramount and the franchise, outperforming DOTM by 40%. Indonesia ($5.7M) and Hong Kong ($4.8M) were the biggest openings of all time in their markets and Singapore was the top four-day opening weekend ever with $4.1M at 28 locations. In Taiwan, TAOE scored the 2nd biggest opening weekend of all time with $8.3M. There, it played on seven IMAX screens for $600K. Finally, in Australia, TOAE earned $10.0M from 261 locations.
Megan Colligan, Paramount’s president of domestic marketing and
distribution says, “We are doing so well internationally. We still have
all of Europe and Brazil yet to bow. We’ve purposely avoided World Cup
countries, but those are coming in the next few weeks. The next
territory to open is Germany.” Indeed, the film has avoided the football
frenzy in Latin America and Europe where it will begin to invade as the
tournament wanes. Likewise, pretty much all other movies avoided this
weekend to get out of the way of Galvatron and company. Below is news on
international holdovers and one new entry in the UK.
While it crossed $200M domestically this weekend, Disney‘s Maleficent continued its international run adding $16M in 54 territories (93% of the international marketplace). In its 2nd weekend in China,
the film earned $2.6M with a cume there of $38.7M. It’s performing well
in a tough spot that saw it sandwiched in between the opening two weeks
ago of Godzilla and this week’s TOAE bow. The
overseas total is now $383.7M and the film has become the
highest-grossing live-action Angelina Jolie title of all time at home,
abroad and combined. The bump this weekend makes it the 4th
highest-grossing global release of 2014 behind Captain America: The Winter Soldier, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 and X-Men: Days Of Future Past. Maleficent hits its last international market on July 5 when it ventures into Japan.
Sony’s 22 Jump Street added an estimated $9.6M in its 4th frame for an overseas cume of $54.2M. Belgium was a No. 1 opening with $620K on 40 screens, about three times more than 21 Jump Street. Norway
was also a No. 1 bow with $750K on 129 screens, five times more than
the earlier movie. Elsewhere in Scandinavia, the film is performing well
with Sweden up 6% for a $1.5M cume and Denmark down 43% for a $1M cume – the movie was No. 1 for the second week in a row in both markets. Also holding over in the UK, the Channing Tatum-Jonah Hill comedy was down only 22% with $2.0M and a $25.5M local total.
With no other studio releases in its way, Universal’s Mrs Brown’s Boys D’Movie had a clear path to No. 1 in the UK
this weekend. Based on the popular Irish sitcom which aired on BBC One,
the big screen adaptation grossed an estimated $7.8M at 520 dates.
Brendan O’Carroll, in drag, plays the loudmouth matriarch Agnes Brown in
the movie that’s skewing to adults and seniors, Universal says. It’s
the studio’s biggest opening of 2014 in the UK and Ireland and has 34%
of the market share. In Ireland, it was the biggest
opening of 2014 and the biggest ever for a local movie. Universal also
has Australia and New Zealand where the TV show has a growing following.
It opens there on July 24.
In its 16th consecutive week at No. 1 in Japan, Frozen
saw a decrease of 34%, one of the bigger drops its experienced
throughout this amazing run. It added $2.7M for a local haul of $236.8M.
(Will another Disney film, Maleficent, be the one to topple Frozen
when it hits Japan next week?) The movie’s worldwide cume is
$1,263.716M. If you’re wondering how this phenomenon has just kept on
going, The New Yorker this past week had an interesting piece titled “How Frozen Took Over The World.” Check it out here.
Neighbors added an estimated $1.9M at 1,200 dates in 38 markets this weekend for an overseas total of $95.3M. The comedy bowed in Chile,
where World Cup fever has been running at a pitch – although the home
side was knocked out on Saturday night – and earned $82K at 31
locations. In World Cup host country Brazil – which
advanced on penalties against Chile – the movie held at No. 6 in its 2nd
frame with an estimated $520K at 180 dates for a total of $1.6M. There
are 12 more markets to come with the current worldwide total at $242.5M.
1ST UPDATE, SATURDAY, 8:51 AM PT: Transformers: Age Of Extinction
added $52M on Friday in 36 overseas markets. That takes the three-day
cume to $80M headed into Saturday. Par says the Friday result is 42%
above Dark Of The Moon which opened to $161M in similar markets
in 2011. The numbers so far are strong and Paramount is rolling out in
markets that are most susceptible to the charms of Optimus Prime, Bumble
Bee and the rest of the shape-shifting gang. China, Korea, Russia and
Australia were among the top territories for the last film in the
series. Through Friday the worldwide cume on TAOE is $121.6M.
China officially bowed on Friday after taking $3.5M in midnights
Thursday and early estimates in the Middle Kingdom are just over $30M
for its opening day. If the estimates hold, that will be the biggest
opening day for a foreign film ever in the market. The movie has strong
ties to China including local partners, talent and locations. It had
been expected to do remarkable business there, following in the
footsteps of pics like last year’s Iron Man 3 which also had a
huge local profile. Another enticement for Chinese audiences is their
very own Li Bingbing who co-stars alongside Mark Wahlberg, the new male
lead for this installment of the franchise. There are also a record
number of IMAX screens in China — 148 of the total 619 IMAX screens
globally — which is a record number for a film in this market.
In other major overseas bows, TAOE had the 2nd biggest
Friday ever in Russia at $4.5M, just below IM3. Friday was up 52% over
Thursday for a local cume of $10.4M. Korea grossed $3M on Friday, the
biggest of 2014. However, it’s still placing as the No. 2 movie of the
franchise. Cume to date is $9.1M. Australia brought in $1.8M, for a
local total thus far of $4.6M. Par says it was 3% above X-Men: Days Of Future Past and TASM2.
Elsewhere in Asia Pacific, Taiwan grossed $1.5M on Friday for a $4.1M cume. It was the biggest Friday there for the year. TAOE recorded the biggest Fridays ever In Malaysia ($1.5M, 91% up on DOTM, $3.2M cume); Singapore ($1M, 22% up on DOTM, $1.8M cume); Indonesia ($936K, 175% up on DOTM, $2.4M cume); and Thailand ($765K, 10% up on DOTM, $2.M cume).
PREVIOUSLY, FRIDAY, 10:09 PST: Michael Bay’s Transformers: Age Of Extinction
has, as expected, opened to big numbers overseas. Through Thursday in
its first debut markets, the movie has taken $30M. That includes what
Paramount says are record-setting midnight previews in China. In all
this weekend, the film is rolling out in 36 international markets. So
far, according to the studio, it is No. 1 in the 22 that went early. The
markets it will cover this weekend equal about 60% of the overseas
footprint. Transformers: Dark Of The Moon, the last movie in the franchise, took $162M in the same market debuts in 2011. Each of the previous Transformers franchise films has bested the previous one internationally. Latin America and Asia have been the biggest growth areas.
In China, which officially opens today (Friday), the record is an
estimated $3.5M for the first midnight showings last night. Of that,
$625K came from IMAX screens — there are 619 IMAX screens globally,
including a record 148 in China. The China score for Age Of Extinction bested the previous record holder Iron Man 3 by 70% and Dark Of The Moon by 75%.
Elsewhere, Age Of Extinction had the biggest opening day of
2014 in Korea, the fast-burn, and increasingly important
grand-spectacle-loving country, with $2.5M and $6M including previews.
However, that was only good for the 2nd biggest score of the franchise.
In Taiwan, TAOE had the biggest opening day of all time with
$1.4M and a cume of $2.6M. Hong Kong posted $1M for the 2nd biggest
opening day of all time and the biggest Paramount and franchise opening
day, 37% ahead of Dark Of The Moon.
Outside of Asia, Russia opened to $5.5M, the 2nd biggest of all time and biggest opening day of 2014. The bow outperformed Dark Of The Moon by 15%.
Along with China, 14 other overseas markets open today. The film has
deep ties to the Middle Kingdom where it was partly shot and was subject
to a cooperation agreement with local companies. It also features an
Asia-centric latter quarter and local star Li Bingbing.
Basically everything else (except the World Cup – although Age Of Extinction
doesn’t hit the most tournament concerned Latin American and Western
European markets until the waning days of the football-fest) has gotten
out of the way of Optimus Prime and the rest of the Autobots. The Fault In Our Stars, Jersey Boys and How To Train Your Dragon 2 are expanding into a handful more territories this weekend.
So, are we looking at a transformative opening weekend worldwide or will so-so reviews hurt the TAOE
blast off? We’ll know more as the frame rides along, but it’s a fair
bet that China will be much more significant this time around given the
growth in the market since 2011 and the film’s huge profile there. It
premiered in Hong Kong on June 19 and just closed the Shanghai
International Film Festival on Sunday. Dark Of The Moon made $165.5M in China, the 2nd biggest imported film ever in the market. It’s worth noting that the Transformers
film prior to that earned only $66M there, another sign of the
significant growth and impact of the Chinese market. After potentially
stirring the pot last week, Age Of Extinction sponsor Pangu
Investments has been mollified. Paramount and Pangu resolved the
accusation that the studio breached its promise to feature its Pangu
Plaza Hotel in the movie in the wake of Pangu‘s attempt to delay the
film’s China opening by demanding cuts.
For reference, Dark Of The Moon’s top grossing markets were China, Korea, Japan, the UK, Russia, Australia, Germany, Mexico, France and Brazil.
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