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Prince Of Persia is biggest game movie ever

Disney film overtakes Tomb Raider in worldwide box office, despite low returns

The movie adaptation of Ubisoft's Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time has become the highest grossing video game movie thus far, despite weak returns in the US.

Loosely based on the 2003 game of the same name, the Disney production stars Jake Gyllenhaal in the lead role, with Gemma Arterton as Princess Tamina. The film was produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and directed by Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire's Mike Newell.

The production budget is estimated at $200 million, but the film has so far grossed only $80.5 million in the US, according to website Box Office Mojo. The movie opened at number two in its first week of release in the US, being beaten by Shrek Forever After, but coming in just ahead of Sex and the City 2.

The film has a Metacritic score of 50, indicating "mixed or average reviews", a relatively high score for most video game adaptations.

Although initially seen as a flop, in what has been characterised as a generally poor summer for box office returns in the US, the international revenues have proven much stronger with a total gross so far of $213.1 million, including $10.7 million in the UK and Ireland.

As a result total revenues now stand at $293.6 million, with the film still showing in many cinemas around the world. The previous record for a video game adaptation is held by the original Tomb Raider film, with a total of gross $274 million.

In the US however, Prince of Persia is merely the third most popular video game movie, behind Tomb Raider and Pokémon: The First Movie.

As has often been the case for a game adaptation, the film is not supported by any specific movie tie-in, but Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands was released just prior to the film and ignores the 2008 reboot of the series to return to the chronology of The Sands of Time series.

The game has proven only a minor success, peaking this week in the UK all formats charts at number seven, thanks to widespread discounting at most retailers.

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David Jenkins