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Tuesday, 11 December, 2001, 10:31 GMT
Harry Potter's weekend record
Harry Potter
A scene from Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
The boy wizard Harry Potter is working his magic by drawing record box office takings across the globe.

Last weekend, the blockbuster film amassed an estimated $62.3m (£43.4m) from 37 countries, topping the $60.9m (£42.5m) it raked in the previous weekend from 31 territories.

Foreign totals for Harry Potter and The Philosophers Stone soared past North America's $239.7m (£167m) to $244.6m (£170.5m), according to trade newspaper Variety.

The gap is set to widen further as the popular film's international gross looks likely to rocket up to $300m (£209m) next weekend.

Known as Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone in the US and Asia, the Hogwarts saga continues to smash industry opening and second weekend records.

Daniel Radcliffe
Daniel Radcliffe plays the part of Harry Potter

The film has rung up $63m (£43.9m) in the UK, overtaking Bridget Jones's Diary to become the market's number six all-time earner.

In Germany, the film notched up $38.8m (£27m) after its third lap. In Mexico, $7.5m (£5.2m) in 10 days and $10.2m (£7m), including previews, on 854 screens in France.

It was the market's widest-ever release, beating Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace and the industry's fourth-highest, behind French pictures Taxi 2, Would I Lie to You? 2 and Asterix & Obelix vs. Caesar.

High flier

In Italy, the $5.5m (£3.8m) opener in four days eclipsed the country's previous first-weekend record set by actor-director Leonardo Pieraccioni's Fireworks in 1997.

French-speaking Switzerland's $544,000 (£379,330) debut was an industry best, surpassing The World Is Not Enough by 30%.

Venezuela's $510,000 (£355,622) also ranked as a new high, outrunning The Mummy Returns by 14%.

Peru's $278,000 (£193,849) stands as the biggest non-holiday premiere ever.

Unprecedented

The Chris Columbus-directed movie dropped by just 2.4% in Japan with a record second-weekend total of $12.2m (£8.5m), hoisting the nine-day tally to a phenomenal $36m (£25m).

Bill Ireton, Warner's managing director in Japan, said he is aiming for an eventual gross of $120m (£83.7m) in the world's No. 2 market.

Similarly, Spain's $4m (£2.8m) was unprecedented, off just 10%, for a total to date of $11.3m (£7.8m).

Coming off a very high peak in Australia, Harry plunged by 44% but its $2.7m (£1.8m) frame was an industry record, and its local total hit $9.1m (£6.3m).

In its second outing in Argentina, the little sorcerer lost his crown to Monsters, Inc., which captured $713,000 (£497,244), 25% bigger than Shrek.


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