Rajasthan set `Marigold Hotel` has strong US opening

Updated: May 08, 2012, 12:26 PM IST

Washington: ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’, the all-star comedy set in India`s Rajasthan state, generated a strong opening in North America as it debuted in limited release.

Its estimated earnings of $750,000 from only 27 theatres for a per theatre average of $27,789 was second best among all films after ‘The Avengers’, according to a website.

Starring Judi Dench and Dev Patel and directed by the Oscar-nominated filmmaker John Madden (‘Shakespeare in Love’), the international hit film played to packed houses in a dozen major cities in the US and Canada and will now expand to additional cities on May 11 and beyond.

Hotel ranks among the Top 15 at the North American box office, despite other films playing in thousands of theatres, and has won critical acclaim with Roger Ebert calling it "a charming, funny and heartwarming movie."

Outside of the US, the ensemble hit also had an excellent opening in Mexico helping to raise the international total gross to an impressive $72.4 million thanks to incredibly successful runs in Australia, New Zealand, Russia, Germany, and the United Kingdom.

Hotel is expected to surpass $75 million in global box office by the time it releases in India on May 18. The film follows a group of British retirees who decide to "outsource" their retirement to less expensive and seemingly exotic India.

Enticed by advertisements for the newly restored Marigold Hotel and bolstered with visions of a life of leisure, they arrive to find the palace a shell of its former self. Though the new environment is less luxurious than imagined, they are forever transformed by their shared experiences, discovering that life and love can begin again when you let go of the past.

IANS