UPDATE, 1:54 PM: surpassing $3B (specifically $3.013B) for the first time in its history. Bouyed by the Marvel franchise Iron Man 3 which took in $806.3M (almost double of its domestic take), the animated Monsters University with $476.4M, and Thor: The Dark World with $4.26M, Frozen which bowed late in the year and has racked up $267.3M in only six weeks’ time, and Oz The Great and Powerful ($258.4M), Disney has emerged as No. 2 in overall market share worldwide, under Warner Bros. Iron Man 3 was the number one film in the marketplace internationally and if you add in its domestic gross of $409M, it was a cash cow of $1.215B and the highest grossing film of 2013. It is also the No 5 film of all time globally. Its opening alone was $174M this summer. Universal International’s hit of the year was Despicable Me 2 which grossed $553.2M which helped rocket the studios’ total international cume to $2.258B. The animated franchise grossed a total of $921M globally for the studio. The other titles helping to push Universal into the record books was Fast and Furious 6 which grossed a total of $550M and About Time which has pulled in $65.9M in foreign territories.
PREVIOUS, Tuesday PM: Walt Disney Studios said today that 2013 marks the first time it has topped the $3 billion mark at the international box office. Final year-end numbers will be released Thursday.
2ND UPDATE: Monday, 12:45 PM: Fox International is expected to end 2013 with a total box office of $2.33 billion, down 14% from a year earlier. Its overseas haul was driven by seven live-action films and three animated family films. The top grosser for the studio internationally was The Croods (DreamWorks) which hammered in $333M, followed by The Wolverine, starring Hugh Jackman, which took in $284.4M and in third place was last year’s critically acclaimed Oscar nominated film Life of Pi ($262.M). Rounding out the top four with an international cume of $238.7M was A Good Day to Die Hard. Other top films for Fox International were Turbo ($171.1M), the animated 3D snail picture, the animated Epic ($163M) and Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters (133.7M). The rest were Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters ($133.7M), Lincoln ($94.8M), The Heat ($71.9M), and The Internship (49.6M). Seven of their top ten pictures crossed the $100M mark for Fox International. The 14% decrease is due, in part, to the fact that in 2012, Fox International released Ice Age 4 which grossed a whopping $720M. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, which was just released in 39 markets has already grossed $27.2M internationally but only has bowed in about half of the biggest 15 territories. It is readying to run into 22 more markets next weekend, including top territories Argentina, France, Germany, Holland, Korea and Russia.
UPDATE: Sunday 4:50 PM: Lionsgate’s The Hunger Games: Catching Fire just surpassed the $400M mark internationally. With numbers just coming in, it opened very soft in Japan with only $540,000. But in 85 markets, the franchise pic took in an estimated $10.5M over the weekend to lift its running total to $404M. It’s total worldwide cume to date is now around $795.2M, so it will surpass the $800M mark this week. The film continued to hold strong over the Christmas holiday including the UK, France, Mexico and the Netherlands.
PREVIOUSLY: SUNDAY, 1 PM: As Sony touted that it had passed the $3 billion worldwide mark this weekend with $1.9B internationally to add to its already hefty $1.119B domestic take, all eyes internationally were on Warner Bros.’ The Hobbit: Desolation Of Smaug as it continued traveling across the world. In 62 markets, the Hobbit sequel has been No. 1 internationally (and domestically) for three straight weekends, pulling in about another $98.3M (-18%) for an estimated cume of $423.8M. Add in domestic and WB has a $614.1M haul so far. Warner Bros. executives expect Smaug to do about as good as the first Hobbit all in. Meanwhile Frozen slid in with another $50.5M in its fifth week of release from 43 territories (representing about 71% of the international marketplace) and is now at a $243.5M cume or worldwide, chalk up $491.2M. Frozen held extremely well in Italy, Germany, and France. it opened in Australia to $5.2M with previews that brought its total take up to $6.5M, representing the third biggest opening for Disney/Pixar behind only Finding Nemo and Toy Story 3. But the animated monster is Despicable Me 2 (UPI) which has the distinction of having a $920.7M worldwide total so far to date with one more market — the big Chinese market — to go on Jan. 10th.
A quick look at Christmas Box office players abroad: 47 Ronin, now in 29 markets, grossed about $13.8M at 2,070 locations for a total international take of $22.3M. It has opened No. 1 in many territories (Bulgaria, Cyprus, Egypt, Lebanon, Taiwan, UAE) and held in Singapore at No. 1 for its second weekend. Still, with the domestic gross added in of about $20.6M, Universal and Elliot is still looking at only $42.9M all in. Not enough. It opened soft in its first market. Guess what? So did Catching Fire. On the other hand, About Time grossed another $2.5M in 15 territories to raise its international cume to $64.9M. Strength from the Korean box office, with a 17-day total of $18.9M, has pushed it passed the U.S. to become the highest-grossing territory and has even outgrossed Smaug. Go figure.
Other U.S. Christmas titles The Wolf of Wall Street, Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, Walking With Dinosaurs, and Saving Mr. Banks internationally are working their way through the marketplace. Wolf is in UK and Ireland, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Spain and Scandanavia. It placed No. 2 and grossed $460,000 at 56 dates. Rest of the territories open Jan. 3. Anchorman 2, a total of $8M in six markets for a cume to date of $25.4M. Quite good. Add in domestic and it has done $108.6M. In 39 markets, Mitty earned a strong $27.2M higher now than its domestic take of an estimated $25.7M. It opens in 22 markets next weekend and is only in 8 of the top 15 markets right now. So worldwide cume is about $52.9M; Dinosaurs is in 46 markets and earned $12.5M for an international cume of $33.4M. Worldwide cume is now $54.7M after this weekend. It is holding well in several markets (Spain, France, Mexico, South Korea and Japan). Opens next weekend in six more markets including Australia and New Zealand. Saving Mr. Banks, which lost its audience in the UK where it was thought it might do well, is only at $43.8M all in ($6M from overseas). Meanwhile, Lionsgate’s Hunger Games: Catching Fire