Ned Kelly grossed $460,000 - the third biggest opening day for an Australian film, behind Moulin Rouge and Crocodile Dundee 2.

The massive local campaign has included a blitz-style publicity tour featuring most of the key cast, including star Heath Ledger, a huge number of massive outdoor billboards and a world premiere in Melbourne, where production was based, plus premieres in most of Australia's other major cities.

The Endymion Films production is the first made through Working Title's Australian subsidiary and was directed by Gregor Jordan and produced by Nelson Woss and Lynda House.

It has had a mixed reception from local critics but Ned Kelly's status as Australia's most famous bushranger and a champion of the country's Irish settlers cannot be underestimated. The cast also includes Naomi Watts and Geoffrey Rush.