Columbia TriStar puts out the year's most hotlyanticipated film Spider-man 2 in 28territories this weekend day-and-date with the North American opening thisweek, but the studio is waiting until next weekend and the weekend after torelease the blockbuster sequel in Europe to avoid any interference from theEuropean football championships.

Major territories which will be spun into a box officefrenzy by the superhero epic this weekend are Australia, Brazil, Mexico, Korea,Taiwan and Russia. The strategy is to open the film in Latin America and Asiaapart from Japan this weekend, with Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Japannext weekend and the rest of Europe the weekend after.

The first film was a huge hit in Latin America, but Sonyis looking to improve on the European and Japan grosses of the first film withthe highly acclaimed sequel.

Columbia TriStar is also opening 50 First Dates in France and Belgium this weekend and ThePunisher in Italy and Sweden.

Meanwhile DreamWorks/UIP unleashed another megahit sequelShrek 2 in Spain yesterday, opensGermany today and the UK tomorrow.

Other openings this weekendinclude BVI's The Ladykillers inSweden, Norway, Denmark, Holland and South Africa, Miramax/BVI's DirtyDancing 2 in Belgium, Miramax/BVI's Duplexin Germany, Fox's Johnson FamilyVacation in Spain and Fox's BrokenLizard's Club Dread in the UK.