Entertainment Movies Jessica Simpson Rules the Box Office – in Ukraine Her U.S. dud Blonde Ambition hits No. 1 in the former Soviet republic By Brian Orloff Published on February 20, 2008 06:50 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Photo: NEILL J. SCHUTZER/RAMEY Is Jessica Simpson the David Hasselhoff of Ukraine? The blond starlet seems to be the toast of the Eastern European nation. Her latest film, Blonde Ambition, hit No. 1 in Ukraine, grossing $253,008 for the weekend of Feb. 14-17, Box Office Mojo reports. It’s a huge reversal of fortune for the film, which bombed back home. In December, Blonde Ambition had a run in eight Texas theaters, grossing just $1,771 in its opening weekend. How to explain the comedy’s success abroad? One word: escapism. “The former Soviet nations have a sweet tooth for straight-up comedies,” Conor Bresnan, editor in chief of Box Office Mojo International, tells PEOPLE. “When these comedies have big name celebrities like Jessica Simpson’s, that’s all that’s needed to sell the movie. Russian and Ukrainian audiences have an even bigger urge for escapism than Americans. So, films like Blonde Ambition will gross more than No Country for Old Men. And this may only be the beginning for Blonde Ambition. Next stop: Bulgaria.