Buena Vista International's belated sequel to 1967's animated classic The Jungle Book scored a strong launch in Germany last weekend to take that country's top chart position.

With 472,521 tickets sold the four-day (March 27-30) opening weekend take of $2.6m (Euros 2.4m) from 668 screens The Jungle Book 2 scored a good average of $3,905 per screen.

It also managed to knock local favourite Good Bye, Lenin! off pole position after a five week reign, despite the German comedy dropping off just one percent from the previous weekend - Lenin now boasts a cumulative total of $28m (Euros 26.1m) from 4.3m admissions.

The result brings the $15m sequel's international total to $36.4m from just 29 territories with many major territories still to come. After Italy and Serbia & Montenegro receive the film this weekend (April 4), key territories coming up include Australia (April 10) and Spain and the UK (both April 11) just in time for the school Easter holidays.

The Jungle Book 2 received its international debut in France on Feb 5 and has sold 3.2m tickets in the eight weeks since, for an approximate gross of $17.6m. Other territories include Belgium with $1.85m (Euros 1.7m), the Netherlands' $1.8m (Euros 1.66m), Switzerland with $1.6m (SFR 2.2m) and Denmark's $1.55m (DKR 10.7m). The film also opened in Austria last weekend where it grossed an additional $400,000 from 92 screens for an average of $4,348 per screen.

The original 1967 film, which has become a home video favourite, grossed $64m from international territories. Disney's last theatrically released sequel - something the company does rarely - Return To Neverland, a sequel to Peter Pan, grossed $61.2m in total from its international run. The Jungle Book 2 has grossed $46.3m to date in North America.

Another animated film, this time distributed by UIP, is also taking advantage of the approaching school holidays. The Wild Thornberrys Movie, which has already grossed $10.9m from only nine territories launches this weekend in Spain, France, Belgium and Norway. It then reaches Australia and New Zealand on April 10 and Denmark and Sweden the following day.

The Wild Thornberrys' strongest territory to date has been the UK/Ireland, where it has taken $9.6m. The Nickelodeon produced film will hope to emulate stablemate The Rugrats Movie which grossed $54.2m internationally in 1999.

Top Ten Animated Films Internationally*

1 The Lion King $459m
2 Aladdin $285m
3 Tarzan $276m
4 Monsters, Inc. $273m
5 Spirited Away $255m
6 Toy Story 2 $240m
7 The Hunchback Of Notre Dame $226m
8 Dinosaur $217m
9 Shrek $215m
10 Beauty And The Beast $207m

All films handled internationally by BVI, except Shrek (UIP) and Spirited Away (various distributors).