British horror title Deathwatch received a stunning international box office debut last weekend in Hong Kong.

Launching on just 19 screens on Nov 7 the film grossed a massive $192,564 (HK$1.5m) to take the top spot from Warner Bros' Ghost Ship.

Starring Jamie Bell, in his first role since his BAFTA-winning turn in Billy Elliot, Deathwatch scored a mighty four-day weekend average of $10,135 per screen. As of Tuesday Nov 12 it had grossed $272,308, including a mighty Tuesday haul of $45,400 on a par with Sunday's $49,500.

The film, written and directed by Michael J Bassett, was co-produced by the UK's Film And Music Entertainment and Germany's ApolloMedia/ApolloProMedia.

Only the second release from start-up Hong Kong distributor Lark Films Distribution, Deathwatch put Ghost Ship, in its second week, into second place with $120,408 from 27 screens. The Warner title has a healthy cumulative gross of $667,000 after 11 days.

Deathwatch's box office triumph in Hong Kong follows a successful premiere on Halloween in the territory for which an entire German trench, a key character itself in the film, was built in the Hong Kong Convention Centre.

The film opens next in the UK for Pathe on Dec 6 and is expected to roll out elsewhere next year. Gaga Communications will handle Deathwatch in Japan, Gussi Films in Mexico, Manga Films in Spain, Hachette Filipacchi Films in France, Scanbox in Scandinavia and I Vision in Korea. International sales are handled by Odyssey Entertainment.