Christmas has come early for "The Adventures of Tintin" fans in Europe, and they are flocking to see the film in droves. Though the movie doesn't come out in the United States until December 21, it opened in several key foreign countries on Wednesday. In the two days since its release (plus some preview showings earlier in the week), the movie has grossed a combined $8.6 million in Belgium, France and the UK.
It makes sense that Sony and Paramount (who are co-distributing the film in Europe) target these three areas first. Belgium is the home country of "The Adventures of Tintin" creator Hergé, and the series is also incredibly popular in France. According to The Hollywood Reporter, "Tintin"'s grosses in those locations are way ahead of the opening day numbers for previous animated films like "Shrek" and "Toy Story 3."
In fact, THR is saying that the expected $18 million opening weekend take for "Tintin" in France will likely make it the top opening of all time for a franchise picture in the country outside of the opening for "Avatar."
So does this bode well for "Tintin" in the US? It could. Audiences are a lot more familiar with Tintin and Captain Haddock in these areas then they are in the United States, but two months of positive overseas buzz for the movie could help convince some audiences over here to head to theaters. Plus the flick has already gotten great critical response (83 percent on Rotten Tomatoes), so it will definitely be good holiday fun.
But it will likely be the collaboration between Steven Spielberg (directing his first animated film ever) and Peter Jackson that will fill up seats in the States opening weekend. Marketing in the US has focused more on the people behind the camera than what the story is about, though that has shifted in recent featurettes and trailers. Either way, "Tintin" is poised to do really well in its worldwide theatrical run, and hopefully will lead to more "Tintin" movies coming our way in the future.
Are you planning on seeing "The Adventures of Tintin" when it hits theaters on Christmas? Tell us in the comments section below or on Twitter!