Studio executives said on Sunday (December 14) that the family feature was on course this weekend to overtake Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and become its biggest release of all time in the UK.

If weekend estimates hold up, Paddington will have generated $4.6m (£2.9m) in the third weekend to reach $22.5m (£14.3m).

Even if Monday’s confirmed numbers fall below weekend estimates, it is now a matter of days before the family film becomes the record-holder.

The Imitation Game has been no slouch either, grossing $821,000 (£522,000) for a $19.5m (£12.4m) running total.