Actor-turned-director Jesus Bonilla struck gold this weekend with star-studded comedy Moscow Gold (El Oro De Moscu), recording the fifth top opening weekend ever for a Spanish film.
The success follows on the heels of Mortadelo & Filemon - The Big Adventure, which continues its record streak with a cumulative Euros 21.6m in its eighth week. Both films will help boost Spanish cinema's market share, which last year fell to 13.7%. Between January 1 and February 28 2003, that share rose to 23%.
Moscow Gold took Euros 1.4m from 304 copies through Columbia TriStar, landing in the weekend's number one spot above Chicago (E944,230), new release The Core (Euros 877,112), The Recruit (Euros 736,256) and new opener The Hunted (Euros 734,324).
Moscow Gold trailed Spanish opening weekend record holders Mortadelo & Filemon (Euros 5.1m), The Others (Euros 3.7m), Torrente 2 (Euros 3.5m) and Alex de la Iglesia's Dying Of Laughter (Muertos De Risa) (Euros 1.7m). The latter two films, like Moscow Gold, star local comedian Santiago Segura.
Leading a cast studded with local comedians and actors, Segura and director Bonilla star as two friends who get caught up in a hunt for a stash of lost gold. Enrique Cerezo produced with Arriabala and Segura's own Amiguetes Entertainment.
Mortadelo & Filemon's current cume of Euros 21.6m, meanwhile, is closing in on Torrente 2 (Euros 22.1) as the third top-grossing Spanish film of all time behind leader Alejandro Amenabar's The Others (Euros 27.1m).