Warner Bros. might need a referral to the podiatrist.
Its penguin sequel Happy Feet Two made only $22 million during its opening weekend in North America, reaching No. 2 spot and collecting just half of what the original, Happy Feet, brought in during its debut weekend in 2006.
What’s more, the sequel had a leg up on the original, as it had screenings in 3-D, which cost a few dollars more than those in 2-D.
The family-oriented animation opened in Mexico and four smaller countries, making $2.6 million from 969 venues abroad. It reached No. 1 in Malaysia.
Featuring voice actors Elijah Wood and Robin Williams in return roles, Happy Feet Two received mixed to bad reviews. Nonetheless, Warner Bros. said that audiences rated it highly, which could give it legs over the next few weeks.
“We honestly feel we’ll pick up some steam and play some catch-up as we get into the holidays,” said WB’s head of distribution, Dan Fellman.
The big winner at the North American box office was the live-action The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 1, which opened with an enormous $139.5 million domestically and another $144 million in 54 overseas countries, according to studio estimates Sunday.
In fifth place domestically was DreamWorks Puss In Boots, with $10.7 million. The Shrek spin-off made another $2.4 million at 1,191 locations in five overseas countries for a cumulatee foreign gross of $53.1 million.
North American business reached $222 million, up 14% from the same weekend last year, when Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 topped the box office with $125 million, according to box-office tracker Hollywood.com.
The animated Aardman-SPA holiday tale Arthur Christmasopens Wednesday for the all-important Thanksgiving weekend in the United States. The movie was in sixth place overseas this weekend with $5 million from 1,610 screens in five countries and has made $9 million so far. It opened at No. 9 this past weekend in Germany, making $1.06 million from 630 venues.
This and other new films could break the Thanksgiving record set in 2009, when New Moon led to a $273 million domestic result between Wednesday and Sunday.
“This could be one of the greatest movie-going weekends ever in the midst of a year that has really had its ups and downs at the box office,” said Hollywood.com analyst Paul Dergarabedian.
Ticket sales were estimated for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to Hollywood.com. Final domestic figures are scheduled for release Monday.
Meanwhile, Sony-Paramount’s The Adventures Of Tintin: Secret Of The Unicornwas No. 2 this weekend abroad, grossing $21.7 million from 13,039 venues in 53 countries. In China, it opened to $7.4 million from 7,030 locations.
Tintin’s foreign gross has reached $187.6 million. The Steven Spielberg animation opens in North America on December 21.
[Via Associated Press — news.yahoo.com/breaking-dawn-rises-283-5m-worldwide-debut-162351779.html, The Hollywood Reporter –