Christmas Day in North America saw a mighty battle shaping up for the weekendwith the launch of Steven Spielberg's Catch Me If You Can trying itsluck against New Line's The Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers.

Catch Me If You Can opened on Wednesday (Dec 25) foran impressive first-day take of $9.7m. Playing at 3,156 sites the film, whichstars Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks and is distributed in the USby DreamWorks SKG, scored $3,074 per site for the day.

However, it was still not quite strong enough to dethrone TheTwo Towers. Peter Jackson's second instalment in his trilogy based on thebooks of J.R.R. Tolkien, added another $13.2m on Christmas Day.

The Christmas holiday is traditionally the second best day of the yearfor cinema attendance in North America. Unfortunately not all would have beencelebrating with such cheer. Miramax debuted Roberto Benigni's Pinocchio,also on Christmas Day, for a lacklustre $290,000. Showing at 1,195 locations the live-action retelling of thefamous tale managed a first-day site average of just $243.

The story was first brought to life on the big screen by another Italian, Giulio Antamoro in a 1911 silent film, and perhaps most famously in 1940 as an animated feature from Walt Disney.