MUMBAI: The Aneez Bazmee-directed comic caper Welcome has recorded pathbreaking collections internationally, emerging as the No.1 film of Christmas 2007. The film was promoted, marketed and distributed overseas by the international arm of Indian Films – Studio 18.
Welcome has grossed more than $ 4.5 million (Rs 18 crore) at the international box-office in just two weeks and is going strong in its third week as well. With no comparable tent-pole release in the weeks to come, Welcome could add more laurels to its kitty.
Of the total international two-week gross, $ 3.5 million has been mopped up from the three key markets alone – US, UK/Ireland and UAE, and the remaining from other European and Asia-Pacific markets.
In the US, Welcome crossed $ 1 million on 63 prints at the end of its second week, much the same as the Gulf, where collections touched $ 1 million on 29 prints at the end of the second week and have held strong over the weekdays as well. Welcome is reported to have beaten some of the biggest blockbusters in the UAE including Namaste London, Heyy Babyy and Bhool Bhulaiyaa, making it the highest grossing film ever for Akshay Kumar in this territory.
In the UK/Ireland, Welcome mopped up $ 1.5 million on 51 prints at the end of its second week, making it the highest fortnight gross for an Akshay Kumar title in this market. It was alongside the Hollywood biggies at No.8 in the coveted UK TOP 10 in its opening weekend, having bagged the second highest opening in 2007 after Om Shanti Om.
In the UK/Ireland, Welcome’s box-office has overtaken that of films like Guru, Chak De! India, Ta Ra Rum Pum Pum, Heyy Babyy and Bhool Bhulaiyaa.