James Bond rules worldwide box office

Sun Nov 16, 2008 2:22pm EST
 
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By Dean Goodman

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The latest James Bond thriller dominated the box office in much of the world during the weekend, boosted by a record opening in North America, distributor Columbia Pictures said on Sunday.

"Quantum of Solace" sold $70.4 million worth of tickets in its first three days of release across the United States and Canada. Industry pundits had forecast an opening in the $60 million range.

The record for a Bond opening in North America was held by "Die Another Day," which earned $47.1 million during its first weekend in November 2002. That film was the last one starring Pierce Brosnan.

"Quantum of Solace" and its 2006 predecessor "Casino Royale," which opened to $40.8 million, starred Daniel Craig. The laconic English actor has invested the famed agent with a darker, more complicated personality.

The new film also earned $56.1 million in 73 countries during the weekend. Having begun its international run two weeks ago, the foreign total now stands at $251.6 million. With a worldwide haul of $322 million, the film is fast approaching the $594 million tally of "Casino Royale."

BOND RULES BRITAIN, FRANCE

Britain was the top foreign market with sales to date of $64.1 million, while Germany and France have each kicked in about $26 million. "Quantum" has already earned more in France than "Casino Royale" did during its entire run there, Columbia said.

The $200 million film was directed by Swiss-German filmmaker Marc Forster, who made his name with smaller pieces such as the Oscar-winning domestic-abuse saga "Monster's Ball" and the James Barrie melodrama "Neverland."   Continued...

 
<p>Actor Daniel Craig poses during his photocall for the Italian premiere of the latest James Bond movie 'Quantum of Solace' in Rome, November 5, 2008. REUTERS/Alessandro Bianchi</p>