French films abroad: Week of August 24 - 30, 2012

French films abroad: Week of August 24 - 30, 2012

The Intouchables: 23 million admissions worldwide.

The Intouchables has overtaken the international performances of Amélie, with 23.3 million admissions to date, compared to 23.1 million for the success directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet. It thus becomes the highest achievement of a French-language film recorded since the beginning of the 1990s and the 3rd most successful French film, behind English-language films Taken (32 million admissions) and The Fifth Element  (36 million admissions). The film pursues its international career in Latin America where it reached 5th place at the Brazilian box office (California Filmes) during its opening weekend, attracting 93,000 spectators. This is an incredible performance in this territory where only twenty films with French as their original language have passed the 100,000 admissions barrier since the beginning of the year 2000. A start of this kind should allow the film to rapidly overtake the results achieved by The Artist (Paris Filmes - 329,000 admissions) in Brazilian theaters at the beginning of the year. In Mexico (Gussi-Artecinema), the film has racked up 123,000 admissions in 10 days, borne along by a rapid increase in the print run from 38 to 78 prints. The Intouchables has already out-performed films such as Paris, I Love You (Cine Video - 120,000 admissions in 2007) and Oceans (Gussi-Artecinema - 119,000 admissions in 2010) in the Mexican territory. After 14 weeks on the screens in the United States (Weinstein Co), its revenues remain stable with around $550,000, and the film has been seen by almost a million North American spectators.

What's in a Name has broken the 100,000 admissions barrier in Italy after 8 weeks on screens. Since the beginning of 2012, the Italian market has suffered a global drop in film theater admissions. 30 French films have been released thus far, compared to 38 in 2011 during the same period. However, 9 of them have tallied more than 100,000 admissions. Among the list is The Intouchables (Medusa Film), which, bolstered by its 2.5 million spectators, has achieved the 3rd largest success of the year in Italian theaters. The Italian public nevertheless continues to surprise by its eclecticism. Several French art house titles released in 2012 have achieved their best international performances here:  Chicken with Plums (Officine - 78,000 admissions), Sister (Teodora Film - 56,000 admissions), All Our Desires (Parthenos - 49,000 admissions), 17 Girls (Teodora Film - 33,000 admissions), and Declaration of War (Sacher - 31,000 admissions).

Holy Motors has got off to an average start in German-speaking countries. The weekend of its release, it attracted 7000 spectators on a print run of 51 prints in Germany (Arsenal) and nearly 1000 spectators for four prints in Austria (Stadtkino). The film seems to be disadvantaged by small-scale foreign releases. Its results in Germany and Austria are no exception, because the film has struggled to make its mark in Belgium (Cinéart – 4000 admissions in 6 weeks on a maximum of 5 prints), in French-speaking Switzerland (Mont-Blanc - 2000 admissions in 7 on a maximum of 6 prints), and the Netherlands (Cinéart NL - 5000  admissions in 2 weeks on a maximum of 12 prints). Nevertheless, the film's reception beyond European borders may be more favorable. We note that Léos Carax last film, Pola X, achieved its best performances in Japan (Eurospace - 54 000 admissions) and the United States (Wellspring - 20,000 admissions), and tallied almost 140,000 admissions worldwide.


Article by  Matthieu Thibaudault

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