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Mon 8 Mar 2010 03:40 PM

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Alice beats Avatar in battle of the UAE box office

Movie becomes biggest non-sequel release of all time and biggest 3D release ever.

Alice beats Avatar in battle of the UAE box office
SUCCESS STORY: The Johnny Depp-starring movie has topped the box office in the US and overseas markets.

Walt Disney Pictures' Alice in Wonderland has taken almost AED2m ($523,278.27) in its first three days on release in the UAE, generating more revenue per screening than James Cameron epic Avatar.

The film adaption of the Lewis Carroll classic has earned $116.3m in the US and $94m overseas, a combined global total of $210.3m. It is the biggest opening weekend box office ever for its director Tim Burton.

Globally, it is the biggest non-sequel release of all time and the biggest 3D release ever, beating the $77m earned by Avatar in December.

In the UAE, the film opened on Thursday March 4 in 23 screens, twelve Digital 3D screens and eleven regular screens. A total of 46,903 people flocked to see the movie in the first three days and, while 82,773 went to see Avatar in its opening weekend, Alice generated more per screening.

Alice, which stars Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter and Anne Hathaway, generated AED2,163 ($588.85) per screening, 28 percent more than the AED1,561 ($424.96) Avatar earned per screening in its opening weekend. Alice earned AED1,922,132 ($523,278.27) in total in its opening weekend.

A Dubai-based film publicist has speculated that exhibitors had not expected the film to perform as well in this region as it is classed as a children’s movie, which usually perform poorly. As a result, more screens are due to be added for its second week on release.

While the film has performed well, it is unlikely to overtake Avatar, which is currently the UAE’s highest earning movie to date. The James Cameron movie earned AED3,236,629 ($881,134.91) in its opening weekend and according to Boxofficemojo.com it has taken in $6,967,769 in the UAE up to the end of February 2009.

Arabian Business digital magazine: read the latest edition online

AV 10 years ago

No surprise if your note that the ticket price for 3D is now 50 AED iso usual 30 AED. No special offers (HSBC cards, etc.) Yesterday I've paid AED 200 for my family though usually it takes AED 60 (2 paid + 2 free). That's that.... Nice movie, by the way.