Two new releases grabbed all the attention at the UK box office this week despite opening outside the top 10 and featuring no Hollywood stars.
Spanish-language title Sex And Lucia (Lucia Y El Sexo) opened in 13th place for distributor Metro Tartan taking an impressive three-day gross of $89,629 (£61,396) from a very limited release. Showing at just 13 sites the erotic drama scored a massive site average of $6,895 - the highest of any film on release this week and almost exactly matching that of another Spanish-language release, Y Tu Mama Tambien, when it was released on April 12.
Y Tu Mama, a Mexican film, recorded a site average of $6,998 over its opening weekend ($265,936 at 38 sites) and has grossed $1.4m to date in the country. Sex And Lucia is directed by Julio Medem (Lovers Of The Arctic Circle) and stars Paz Vega as the title character.
Also demonstrating that you don't need a wide release to succeed in the marketplace was Eros International's latest release, Na Tum Jaano Na Hum. The Indian release, which stars Hritik Roshan, Saif Ali Khan and Esha Deol, opened at 24 sites to take 11th position with $128,254 (£87,854). The film's site average ($5,344) was second only to Sex And Lucia with both films out performing the averages of wide releases including chart toppers About A Boy and Panic Room.
A lack of high profile new releases allowed UIP's About A Boy to retain the top position after dropping off 32% with $2.2m (£1.5m), closely followed by Columbia's Panic Room in second with $2.0m (£1.4m) dropping just 27% from its opening weekend. Both films will expect a much bigger dip next weekend when 20th Century Fox launches Star Wars: Episode II - Attack Of The Clones.
The highest placed opener of the week was Pathe's Dog Soldiers in third with a solid $994,669 (£681,348) from 313 sites for an average of $3,178. However, failing to find much of an audience were US titles Slackers from Momentum Pictures and I Am Sam from Entertainment. Slackers, a comedy featuring Jason Schwartzman (Rushmore), Devon Sawa (Final Destination) and James King (Pearl Harbor), managed just $221,082 (£151,441) at 177 sites for a weak screen average of $1,249 and ninth place. I Am Sam fared only slightly better. The drama, which stars Sean Penn and Michelle Pfeiffer, took 10th position with $220,334 (£150,929) from 121 sites - an average of $1,821.
The top five were rounded out by Helkon SK's continuing hit Bend It Like Beckham at four, which has now grossed $13m in the UK, and Warner Bros' Showtime which held fifth in its second week on release with a weekend take of $439,218 (£300,864).