The massive opening of 20th Century Fox's Planet Of The Apes, the third biggest for the distributor in the UK after Star Wars: Episode 1 - The Phantom Menace and Independence Day, and the continued success of Warner Bros' Cats & Dogs, UIP's Jurassic ParkIII and several other high profile releases continue to help the UK towards a bumper year at the box office.
Tim Burton's Apes led the weekend UK top 15 to the massive combined revenue of $16.3m (£11.3m), the second biggest weekend result of the year so far. While this could not match the $18.4m (£12.8m) scored over the February 16-18 weekend, which saw the debut of this year's biggest opener to date Hannibal, it follows quickly on the heels of the August 3-5 weekend which scored $15.9m (£11.01m) and holds the third largest weekend result for the top 15 this year - thanks in large to the combined release of Cats & Dogs and Entertainment's Rush Hour 2. Last weekend was also up year-on-year against the same weekend in 2000, which saw the release of another Fox film X-Men take the top spot, by 32%.
Cats & Dogs continued to show solid figures taking $2.5m (£1.7m) in its third week on release taking second position. The family film, which among the many voice talents on display features Michael Clarke Duncan who also appears under heavy make-up in Apes, played at 443 sites over the weekend for a site average of $5,667. The total gross now stands at $21.1m (£14.6m).
Rounding out the top five this week were blockbuster sequels Rush Hour 2 and Jurassic Park III, and, reclaiming a top five slot, Shrek. The computer animated hit has now achieved $37m (£25.6m) and continues to show strong results, taking $0.87m (£0.6m) in its eighth week on release.
The only other openers this week were French-Iranian feature A Time For Drunken Horses which managed $20,393 (£14,112) from 5 sites and the re-release of 1972 German film Aguirre: The Wrath Of God at the NFT, which took a massive $15,012 (£10,388) from the single site. This was still not a strong enough site average to claim best of the week however, a distinction which once again went to Apes with $17,646.