The French box office in the early stages of the year shows little change from the last few weeks of 2003. Although grosses dropped off from the previous week - in many cases by at least 50% - thanks to the New Year's holiday, Lord Of The Rings remained at number 1 after three weeks followed by Finding Nemo which ranks as the most successful release of 2003 even though it was only released in November.

Russell Crowe's seafaring epic Master And Commander entered the chart at number three with a healthy screen average of $7,638 - albeit amid some controversy (in the book the bad guys were Americans, in the movie they're French).

Calendar Girls' landed at a respectable number eight thanks to a well-rounded ad campaign, while six French films feature in the top 20 including Alain Resnais' Pas Sur La Bouche which has turned out to be something of a disappointment for Pathe considering the great success of Resnais last film, 1997's On Connaît La Chanson.