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‘Beauty and the Beast’ Tops Foreign Box Office With $66.5 Million

Variety logo Variety 4/2/2017 Brent Lang
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Beauty and the Beast” is waltzing toward the $1 billion mark.

The Disney romance has earned $876.3 million globally after three weeks of release. It added another $66.5 million to that haul last weekend, topping the foreign box office in the process. The film added a number of territories, including the Netherlands, Malaysia, New Zealand, and Chile, and is now screening in 55 territories. Japan is the last major market where “Beauty and the Beast” has yet to screen — it opens in the country on April 21.

“Beauty and the Beast’s” success continues Disney’s hot streak. The studio made $7 billion globally last year, with four of its films crossing $1 billion. Next month brings a sequel to “Guardians of the Galaxy,” with followups to “Cars,” “Thor,” and “Star Wars” all slated to open this year.

After bombing domestically, Paramount’s “Ghost in the Shell” did better overseas, pulling in $40.1 million abroad from 50 foreign territories. The science-fiction adventure has been dogged by charges of “whitewashing” after Scarlett Johansson landed the lead role. Her character, a cyber-enhanced human, was Asian in the Japanese manga that inspired the film. DreamWorks Pictures and Reliance Entertainment backed the film along with Paramount. It cost a hefty $110 million to bring to the screen. Set in the near future, Johansson plays an agent on the trail of terrorist hackers. Globally, “Ghost in the Shell” has made $59.1 million. It will need to be embraced in China and Japan, where it opens on April 7, if it has a chance of making its budget back.

DreamWorks Animation’s “The Boss Baby” nabbed third place on the charts, picking up $36.2 million from 34 markets. The family film has made $85.2 million worldwide and topped the domestic box office. There are several remaining markets left to open, including the United Kingdom and Sweden, where the picture opens next weekend. “The Boss Baby” centers on a power struggle between puppies and babies, with Alec Baldwin playing a suit-wearing little tyke.

Warner Bros. and Legendary’s “Kong: Skull Island” came in fourth with $34.6 million. The King Kong remake has made $477.3 million.

The top five was rounded out by “The Devotion of Suspect X,” a Chinese mystery-thriller about a man who consults for the police and suspects that an old friend might be involved in a murder he’s investigating. The film brought in $22.2 million.

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