The Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring (international box office total $434m to date) achieved a record-breaking opening in Poland over the weekend.
With a three day gross of $1.9m (zlo 8.1m) the film was well ahead of the country's previous highest openings, including local hits Pan Tadeusz ($1.4m in Oct 1999) and Quo Vadis ($1.3m in Sept 2001), and big US titles such as Harry Potter And The Philosopher's Stone ($1.2m in Jan 2002) and Star Wars: Episode 1 - The Phantom Menace ($937,724 in Sept 1999). Rings played on 109 screens in Poland to earn a massive per screen average of $17,818.
In Italy, where Steven Soderbergh's Ocean's Eleven has grossed $15.4m to date, another ensemble film also starring Julia Roberts has claimed pole position this week. The belated Italian release of America's Sweethearts, which co-stars John Cusack, Billy Crystal and Catherine Zeta Jones, launched on 395 screens to record an impressive three-day figure of $1.8m (euros 2.04m). The film opened in most European territories in October 2001.
Ocean's Eleven continued its roll-out with new openings this week in the UK ($7.3m from 433 sites), Norway ($375,252 from 51) and Denmark ($342,120 also from 51). The film has grossed $149.7m from international territories so far and opens in Hungary and Brazil this weekend.
Arnold Schwarzenegger's latest action foray, Collateral Damage, began its European roll-out with Spain at the weekend. The film landed in second position, behind Monsters, Inc., earning $1.1m (euros 1.25m) over the three-day weekend. Playing on 261 screens it is a promising start for the film's European box office possibilities. Collateral Damage opens in Germany, Italy and Schwarzenegger's homeland of Austria this weekend. Having opened in South Korea on Feb 9 the film has taken $2.2m in nine days on release. It has grossed $29.1m after 11-days on release in North America.