Michael Moore's Fahrenheit9/11 received a mighty international debut this weekend in Europe.
In the UK the film shatteredthe record for the best ever opening for a documentary, taking a colossal $2.4m(£1.3m) on 132 screens including previews through distributor OptimumReleasing. Moore's own Bowling For Columbine previously held the record,opening on $292,680 (£157,898) for Momentum Pictures in 2002,
The three-day weekend took $1.8m(£0.95m) following the $0.8m (£0.45m) already taken from previews on SundayJuly 4, Wednesday July 7 and Thursday July 8.
The opening puts Fahrenheitwell on its way to becoming the UK's biggest ever documentary release. Itstarget is Touching The Void's record $4.8m (£2.6m) set earlier thisyear.
Optimum will expand by a further50 prints this week, and up to a total of 210-230 screens the following week.
The release roughly coincideswith Optimum's fifth anniversary, and is the company's biggest grossing releaseto date. Optimum marketing chief DannyPerkins commented: "It's nice to be a position to deliver on that kind of levelon our fifth anniversary."
Meanwhile the first five dayson release in France netted 481,841 admissions - approximately $3.3m (Euro2.7m).
Following sold out screeningsover the weekend, French distributor Mars Distribution has quickly decided toadd a further 150 prints this week, for a total of 380. In Paris alone 30screens are taking in an average of 30,000 admissions per day.
Fahrenheit 9/11 also launched in other French speaking territories.In Belgium it finished second in the box office chart behind only Shrek 2,with an opening five-day weekend of $576,109 (Euro 465,018) at 34 screensincluding previews. Paradiso Entertainment handles the Belgian release
In French-speakingSwitzerland the film claimed $303,138 (SFR 371,738) from just 14 screens overthe five-day opening for local distributor Frenetic. The film finished fourthin the weekend chart for the whole country despite having yet to open in theGerman and Italian speaking regions.