British comedian Rowan Atkinson's latest film, "Johnny English Reborn," doesn't hit theaters in the U.S. until late October.
But Universal Pictures, the studio behind the picture, already has something to celebrate: This weekend, the movie opened in 15 foreign countries and grossed $11.7 million. That's the biggest opening weekend ever for a movie starring Atkinson, known to most for his portrayal of Mr. Bean, the earnest but often uncouth character he's played on both television and the big screen.
In "Johnny English Reborn," Atkinson reprises his role as the incompetent secret agent audiences first met in 2003's "Johnny English." That film collected $28 million stateside but was a blockbuster overseas, where it raked in $132.5 million.
Atkinson has a limited following in the United States. 1997's "Bean" made $205.9 million of its overall $251.2 million tally outside the U.S., while a decade later "Mr. Bean's Holiday" grossed $196.4 million of its $229.7 million total beyond American shores in 2007.
"Johnny English Reborn" performed best this weekend in Russia and Australia, where it made about $2.5 million in each country. The movie, which Universal said it produced for $45 million, has yet to open in 48 countries — including Great Britain — and will bow in the U.S. and Canada on Oct. 28.