Festival gems perform well in the UK, but usually far outside the top 100.
Foreign-language titles have long struggled at the UK box office against English-language fare, as all are subtitled rather than dubbed. The highest-grossing foreign-language film in the UK in 2008 was the Spanish horror title The Orphanage, which took $2.5m (£1.7m) and ended the year just outside the top 100 at number 103.
The French-produced, English-language thriller Taken was the highest-grossing foreign title in 2008. UK titles The Duchess, Son Of Rambow, How To Lose Friends & Alienate People and Adulthood enjoyed a strong showing in the top 100, as did UK-US collaborations including Angus, Thongs And Perfect Snogging, RockNRolla, The Other Boleyn Girl, In Bruges, The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas and Penelope.
The French-produced, English-language thriller Taken was the highest-grossing foreign title in 2008.
Mamma Mia! The Movie and James Bond film Quantum Of Solace, the US studio blockbusters to shoot in the UK and enjoy UK-US status, sit atop the chart as the most successful films of the year. Mamma Mia! of course has become the most successful film in the UK of all time.
For foreign titles, the UK chart becomes interesting outside the top 100. The UK box office was a solid international market for festival favourites I’ve Loved You So Long; Lust, Caution; The Diving Bell And The Butterfly; Gomorrah; Persepolis and Waltz With Bashir.
The other big niche in the UK is that of the Bollywood and Indian films that target the Indian diaspora. The most successful in 2008 was Yash Raj’s Hindi-language Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi, which grossed $2.2m (£1.5m).
|Title (origin)||Distributor||Gross US$|
|The Orphanage (Sp/US)||Optimum Releasing||$2.5m|
|Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi (Ind)||Yash Raj||$2.2m|
|Singh Is Kinng (Ind)||Studio 18||$2m|
|I’ve Loved You So Long (Fr)||Lionsgate UK||$1.8m|
|Lust, Caution (US/China)||UPI||$1.6m|
|The Diving Bell And The Butterfly (Fr/US)||Pathé||$1.5m|
|Jodhaa Akbar (Ind)||UTV||$1.5m|
|Dostana (Ind)||Yash Raj||$1.4m|
|Gomorrah (It)||Optimum Releasing||$1.4m|
|Persepolis (Fr)||Optimum Releasing||$1.3m|
|Source: Nielsen EDI|