Though The Smurfs just came up short of being the number one box office draw this past weekend, with John Favreau, Ron Howard and Steven Spielberg's Cowboys & Aliens just coming out on top by $800,000, a sequel for the little blue guys - and gal - is looking like a definite go.
Rory Bruer, Sony's distrubution president, was quoted as saying that a sequel is "very likely," according to the LA Times.
This weekend The Smurfs was projected to gross around the $15-20 million mark, but when final numbers were tallied, came in above and beyond expectations at $36.4 million domestically - with the foreign market looking like a bigger cash cow.
"I would not be surprised if the international grosses for 'Smurfs' dwarf even the domestic total," Bruer told the Times. "Certainly the film's roots are in Europe, so we've always felt like the film was going to be quite strong there."
While Cowboys & Aliens did come in first at $35.6 million, this is below the $40-45 million estimate the studios (Paramount, Dream Works, Universal, Relativity Media) were hoping for.
As the Times notes, most likely The Smurfs will continue to make money in subsequent weeks, but Cowboys probably won't. And as Cowboys debuts in foreign markets, will the "America Western theme" even appeal as much?
Interestingly enough, The Smurfs first saw their debut from Belgian cartoonist Peyo in 1958.