Antipodean actress Nicole Kidman reclaimed the crown at the UK box office this week, four weeks after her musical hit Moulin Rouge relinquished the top spot to American Pie 2, as The Others knocked the comedy sequel from its perch following a three week reign.

The chiller scored an impressive take of $3.3m (£2.3m) from 385 sites, showing a strong site average of $8,593. The takings included cannily timed previews on Wednesday and Thursday nights to catch the Halloween crowd looking for a fright, which resulted in $472,613 (£322,795) from 268 sites. The Others marks the English-language debut of Spanish director Alejandro Amenabar, whose previous efforts include Abre Los Ojos on which Cameron Crowe's upcoming Vanilla Sky is based - both featuring Penelope Cruz.

Meanwhile Moulin Rouge continues to show strong legs taking eighth position in its ninth week on release with $466,881 (£318,880) from 261 sites. Baz Luhrmann's film has already accumulated $25m at the UK box office and is currently the eighth most successful film of the year so far in the territory, having just passed another 20th Century Fox title - Planet Of The Apes.

The only other opener to make the chart this week was Rob Schneider vehicle The Animal from Columbia TriStar. The comedy claimed seventh position with $506,078 (£345,651) from 245 sites, a lacklustre screen average of $2,066. The top five was filled out by American Pie 2 in second place with $1.5m, bringing its total to date to $23.1m after just four weeks on release, followed by Legally Blonde ($1.3m), Jeepers Creepers ($1m) and Atlantis: The Lost Empire ($861,830).

Just missing a chart position was Warner Bros live-action/animation mix Osmosis Jones. Despite featuring a voice cast including Chris Rock, Frasier's David Hyde Pierce and Laurence Fishburne, as well as Bill Murray in the live-action scenes, the comedy failed to find an audience taking a paltry $87,221 (£59,572) from 175 sites for a screen average of just $498. The film was directed by Peter and Bobby Farrelly who have a hit-and-miss track record in the UK with Dumb And Dumber ($14.0m), Kingpin ($2.9m), There's Something About Mary ($23.3m) and last year's Me, Myself And Irene ($6.0m). Their latest film, Shallow Hal starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Jack Black, opens in the UK in February 2002.