Marvel Studios and Disney's Iron Man 3 has blasted into the stratosphere overseas, according to a report by The Hollywood Reporter, opening to $198.4 million from 42 markets to beat last year's global blockbuster The Avengers, which debuted to $185.1 million internationally. Iron Man 2 posted a foreign opening of roughly $100 million in 2010.
Domestically, Avengers debuted to $207.4 million, the top number of all time. Disney president of worldwide distribution Dave Hollis reportedly didn't want to speculate as to whether Iron Man 3 could reach that number but said the film is clearly off to a stellar start. "To say we are beyond encouraged is an understatement," he said.
Iron Man 3, another victory for Marvel Studios' president Kevin Feig, is breaking a slew of records overseas, scoring the biggest opening weekend ever Asia Pacific and Latin America, and in individual countries including Argentina, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Vietnam, Taiwan, Philippines, Malaysia and Singapore. It also scored the top Marvel opening in another raft of markets.
Teaming Downey with franchise newcomer, director Shane Black, Iron Man 3 opened at the international box office ahead of its May 3 North American launch, as Iron Man 2 did in 2010. Gwyneth Paltrow and Don Cheadle also are returning cast members.
Iron Man 3, which has been well received by critics so far, is playing in roughly 80 percent of the foreign marketplace, excluding major markets Russia and China, where DMG Entertainment put up some of the financing.
It saw its biggest gross in the U.K. ($21.5 million), followed by Korea ($19.2 million), Australia ($18.4 million), Mexico ($16.1 million), France ($14.7 million), Brazil ($12.3 million), Italy ($11.2 million), Taiwan ($8.4 million), Philippines ($7.4 million), Japan ($5.4 million), India ($5.2 million), Spain ($5 million), Hong Kong ($4.9 million), Malaysia ($4.6 million) and Indonesia ($4.5 million), among other markets.
The tentpole broke numerous records for 113 IMAX theaters, which took in $7.2 million for a per screen average of $64,000, coming in ahead of any Marvel title, including Avengers.
Watch a newly-released clip from the film, below: