By Karima Rhanem | Morocco TIMES 5/22/2006 | 12:52 am
Despite protests, critics and bad reviews around the world, the controversial adaptation of Dan Brown's best selling novel, 'The Da Vinci Code', managed to attract worldwide attention, including Morocco.
The movie opened on Saturday in Megarama movie theatre in Casablanca. It was displayed in two rooms at the same time, which is exceptional in the multi-room mega theatre.
All seats in both rooms were sold and many people didn't manage to see the year's most eagerly awaited film.
The film sold about USD 77 million worth of tickets at cinemas in the US and Canada during its first three days, and USD 147 million overseas, according to Box Office figures.
The highly-anticipated thriller "The Da Vinci Code" overcame critical pans and protests from religious groups to achieve the second-largest worldwide opening ever and the biggest opening of the year nationally, according to studio estimates Sunday.
The film's opening is a relief for Sony Corp., which spent USD 125 million making the film and half as much again to market it.
The movie began its worldwide debut with Tom Hanks as the cryptologist pursuing a 2,000-year-old mystery that could reveal Jesus and Mary Magdalene were married and that the Vatican covered it up.
The film, which stars Tom Hanks, Ian McKellen and Audrey Tatou, starts with a murder in Paris Louvre Museum.
Robert Langdon (Tom Hanks) returns to the famous Ritz hotel for a good night's sleep after giving a talk at the American University of Paris on mysterious runes at Chartres Cathedral.
A late-night visit from the police inspector Bezu Fache leaves him shocked: the man with whom he was supposed to meet earlier that day, Jacques Saunière, has been murdered.
Jacques Saunière's body is discovered in the Louvre's Denon Wing, not far from two of Leonardo Da Vinci's greatest works.
Near the body, the police have found an enigmatic message. With the help of Saunière's granddaughter, talented cryptologist Sophie Neveu, Langdon unravels the message: a series of clues that will lead the two on a quest for the Holy Grail.