“Finding Nemo” narrowly lost the swimming race with Resident Evil: Retribution at the North American box office this past weekend, according to studio estimates released Sunday.
A 3D version of the 2003 Pixar-Disney smash hit, Finding Nemo charted at No. 2 spot in the United States and Canada to open at $17.5 million, according to Disney.
By contrast, live-action horror sequel Resident Evil: Retribution ruled the roost with $21.1 million.
The 3D version of Finding Nemo has collected $5.1 million in seven overseas countries, including $1.3 million over the past weekend. The initial release of Finding Nemo brought in $527.9 million abroad.
The winner of the Academy Award for best animated feature film, Finding Nemo grossed $868 million worldwide during its first run, making it one of the most successful releases from Disney’s Pixar animation studio. The underwater comedy featured the voices of Albert Brooks, Ellen DeGeneres and Willem Dafoe.
This weekend’s 3D re-release cost little, with the Mouse House spending under $5 million to convert the movie to 3D. Box office results were a bit lower than Disney’s initial projections. However, according to Dave Hollis, Disney’s executive vice-president for motion picture distribution, the gross was similar to those of earlier 3D re-release openings.
“It’s great for families during the day, and then couples at night,” said Hollis. There was a balance of age and gender among those seeing the movie this weekend, he added.
Hollywood.com box office analyst Paul Dergarabedian said he was somewhat surprised that the latest incarnation of Resident Evil would top the box office. He thought that Finding Nemo would be the winner, what with the continued success of Pixar films and last year’s strong opening Disney’s 1994 animated movie The Lion King in 3-D, which debuted at No. 1 with $30.1 million — and which eventually brought in $94 million.
This weekend, animated children’s movie Paranorman, distributed by Universal, was in fifth place in North America with $3 million. In Britain, it reached No. 1 or No. 2, making $2.2 million from 481 venues.
Paranorman opened abroad in eight markets, making $3.8 million overall at 2,700 theaters in 36 countries. So far, the Focus Features film has made $25 million overseas.
On Monday, Seth MacFarlane’s partly animated comedy-fantasy Ted is expected to beat 2009′s The Hangover as the biggest-grossing original R-rated comedy released abroad. So far, Ted made $189 million overseas.
Ted debuted this weekend to collect $2.1 million at 463 venues. Overall, it generated $8.1 million from 2,800 screens in 43 countries. It’s made $406 million around the world and still hasn’t been shown in 17 foreign countries.
DreamWorks Animation’s Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted opened at No. 1 in Australia, collecting $4.4 million (including previews) at 265 locations. It reached $405 million abroad after making $6.9 million at 2,134 venues in 33 lands.
Tad: The Lost Explorer, the latest entry in the Tadeo Jones animation series, remains No. 1 in Spain. Released by Paramount to 333 theaters, it’s made $2 million in its third weekend, raising the cumulative total to $11.7 million in Spain — the only country where the film’s been screened so far.
[Reuters -- news.yahoo.com/resident-evil-retribution-swims-past-finding-nemo-172727782--sector.html?_esi=1, Associated Press -- news.yahoo.com/resident-evil-rules-box-office-21-1m-155335844--finance.html?_esi=1, The Hollywood Reporter -- www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/foreign-box-office-resident-evil-retribution-madagascar-3-ted-seth-mcfarlane-370653]