New Line's Freddy Vs Jasonscored a dazzling surprise opening of $36.4m at the weekend, scaring off lastweek's champion S.W.A.T. intosecond place with its $18.6m.
Kevin Costner's western, OpenRange, opened third on a respectable$14.1m for Buena Vista, while MGM's chick flick Uptown Girls debuted on a feisty $11.2m in fifth place.
Warner Bros' skateboardingadventure Grind flopped afterabysmal reviews, opening in 12th place on a sub-Gigli $2.6m.
All figures are based onestimates and will be confirmed this week.
Freddy Vs Jason pitches two of the horror genres most familiar facesagainst each other and stars Monica Keena and Jason Ritter in non-killer roles.
Directed by Ronny Yu, thefilm garnered fairly bad reviews but averaged a laudable $12,085 from 3,014theatres.
Open Range impressed the critics and marks a return to the bigscreen for Costner, who directed and stars in the tale of four cowboys who takeon a bullying town leader.
The film averaged $6,795from 2,075 venues and also stars Robert Duvall, Annette Bening and MichaelGambon.
In Uptown Girls, Brittany Murphy stars as a New York socialite whois forced to get a job as the nanny to a top executive's infant daughter.
It received so-so reviewsand averaged $4,488 from 2,495 sites. Dakota Fanning and Heather Locklearco-star in the film which was directed by Boaz Yakin.
Elsewhere, S.W.A.T. raised its score after two weeks to $70.1m, whileBuena Vista's Freaky Fridayslipped two places to fourth, adding $13.1m for $57.9m in its second week.
Overall the top 12 filmscombined for $132m, up 33.2% against the same period last year.
Next week's releases includethe Paramount comedy Marci X,starring Lisa Kudrow and Damon Wayans; TriStar Pictures' action-thriller TheMedallion, starring Jackie Chan andLee Evans; and Miramax's comedy My Boss's Daughter, starring Ashton Kutcher and Tara Reid.
Estimated Top Ten US Aug15-17, 2003
Film(Distributor)/International distribution/Estimated weekend gross/Estimatedtotal to date
1 (-) Freddy Vs Jason (New Line) NLI $36.4m -
2 (1) S.W.A.T. (Columbia) CTFDI $18.6m $70.1m
3 (-) Open Range (Buena Vista) Cobalt Media $14.1m -
4 (2) Freaky Friday (Buena Vista) BVI $13.1m $57.9m
5 (-) Uptown Girls (MGM) 20th Century Fox $11.2m -
6 (4) Pirates Of TheCaribbean (Buena Vista) BVI $8.5m$247.9m
7 (3) American Wedding (Universal) UIP $8.2m $80.6m
8 (5) Seabiscuit (Universal) Spyglass/BVI $ 8.1m $83m
9 (6) Spy Kids 3-D: GameOver (Dimension) BVI $5.2m $96.8m
10 (7) Bad Boys II (Columbia) CTFDI $ 3.2m $128.9m