Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End grossed an estimated $205.5m in the international marketplace this weekend, the biggest standard opening of all time, according to distributor Buena Vista International (BVI).
If early estimates putting the film's North American total at $126.5m stand up, At World's End, the third installment of Disney and Jerry Bruckheimer's Pirates trilogy, could become the biggest worldwide standard opener as well, with $332m.
The film's international opening total came from 17,500 screens in 102 territories. BVI said the $205.5m covered the Wednesday-to-Sunday period and therefore beat the previous 'standard' international opening record of $176.8m, set just three weeks ago by Sony's Spider-Man 3. The Spidey sequel's worldwide standard opening gross was $327.8m.
Spider-Man 3 opened on a Tuesday in some markets and notched up $231m by the end of its first weekend. That total would seem to remain the biggest international opening ever without a time-span qualification. The film's unqualified worldwide opening of $381.7m also remains the biggest ever.
Anthony Marcoly, BVI's president of sales and distribution, said the At World's End performance was 'at the upper limit of our expectation. We are more than thrilled with this number.'
The film, added BVI vice president of sales and distribution David Kornblum, ''eventized' what typically is not a big movie-going period internationally. Because the movie was there it generated holiday level business plus.'
At World's End was the top film in all its markets, accounting for 70%-85% of box office business in every territory, BVI said.
The UK was its top market, with an estimated $25.8m from 12,050 screens. Korea produced $19.6m - an all time weekend record for the territory - from 623 screens; Germany delivered $16.9m from 1,585 screens; France $16.7m from 620; Japan $15.7m from 883; Russia $13.7m from 700 (another weekend record); Spain $12.1m from 863; Australia $9.8m from 650; Italy $9.6m from 857; Mexico $9.4m from 1,096; and Brazil $4.9m from 679.
The film brought in $21.3m from 2,667 screens in 18 Latin American territories.
BVI said At World's End has already taken 60% of what the first Pirates film, 2003's Curse of the Black Pearl, managed over its lifetime internationally ($348.5m). Last summer's second film, Dead Man's Chest, grossed $642.3m internationally and $1.06bn worldwide, the third highest worldwide total ever.
At World's End pushed Sony Pictures Releasing International's Spider-Man 3 into second place overall and second place in most of its markets. In its fourth weekend, the Spidey sequel grossed an estimated $ 19.1 from 11,600 screens in 77 markets, for an international total to date of $ 499.1m.
In the UK, Spider-Man 3 fell 59% to take $2.1m on 769 screens, for a territory total to date of $60.5. In France, it fell 72% to $2.0m from 866 screens, for a $49.6 m territory total. In Brazil it was down 50% to $1.4m from 700 screens, for a total of $21.6 m. In Spain it dropped 56% to $1.2m from 684, for a total of $23.3 m. And in Mexico it slid 62% to $1.2m from 841, for a $32.8 total, the biggest ever achieved in the territory, according to Sony.
Zodiac, distributed internationally by Warner Bros Pictures International, was third in most of its holdover markets, dropping 46% and grossing an estimated $5m (590,000 admissions) from 1,450 prints in 19 markets. The film's international total rose to $17.3m.
In France, Zodiac took an estimated $1.34m (164,000 admissions) from 376 prints, for a territory total of $5.2m. In the UK it had its smallest weekend drop (39%) and generated an estimated $986,000 (96,000 admissions) from 229 situations. The estimated total for the market is $3.4m.
Warner's 300 grossed an estimated $311,000 (from 47,000 admissions) this weekend from over 700 prints in 36 markets. Its international total climbed to $232.2m.
DreamWorks Animation's Shrek The Third, distributed by Paramount Pictures International (PPI), grossed an estimated $5m from 443 locations in its second weekend in four territories. Its international total climbed to $23m.
The highest gross came from Russia, where the film took $4.2m from 263 screens, down 65%, for a territory total of $19.5m.
Universal/UPI's Mr Bean's Holiday grossed an estimated $1.1m from 2,000 dates in 40 territories, bringing its international total to $178m. The hit British comedy remains in the top ten in markets including the UK, Germany, Austria and Argentina and has yet to open in five territories, including China, Japan and Korea.
Fox International's 28 Weeks Later also took an estimated $1.1m, from 545 screens, for an international total of $13m. In the UK, the zombie sequel managed $900,000 from 390 screens, for a territory total of $8.4m.
Fox's Borat opened in Japan to gross an estimated 63,000 from 31 screens. The comedy has now taken $132m in the international marketplace.
PPI's Shooter grossed an estimated $883,000 from 837 locations across 60 territories. Its international total is now $43.0m, with the film set to open in Japan next week.
PPI's Blades of Glory grossed an estimated $653,000 from 584 locations across 19 territories, bringing its international total to $16.2m.Magicians , the British comedy acquired by Universal/UPI for eight territories, fell 63% in its second weekend in the UK, grossing an estimated $270,000 from 230 dates. It was number six for the weekend, with a ten-day total of $1.3m.
Universal/UPI's third British comedy, Hot Fuzz, reached $50m at the international box office with an estimated gross of $105,000 from 110 dates in 10 territories. Its next major-territory opening is in Germany on June 14.