Pixar's The Incredibles, distributed in the US through Buena Vista, beat off thechallenge of Warner Bros' The Polar Express to stay top with an estimated $51msecond weekend haul that raised its running total to $144.1m.
Polar Express, a 50/50 co-venture between Warner Bros and Steve Bing'sShangri-La Entertainment that cost $165m to produce, opened in second place on$23.5m for the weekend and grossed $30.8m in its first five days.
Robert Zemeckis adapted anddirected Chris Van Allsburg children's story about a child's magical train rideto meet Father Christmas in the North Pole. Tom Hanks provided voice and motioncapture movements for several characters.
However the picture drew mixed reviews and averaged an OK $6,446on 3,650 screens. Michael Jeter, Chris Coppola and Peter Scolari also star.
Opening in third place was New Line's crime caper After TheSunset, which was notliked by critics but managed an $11.5m gross for a $4,079 average on 2,819 screens.
Pierce Brosnan plays a supposedly retired master thief who istempted by one final job. Salma Hayek and Woody Harrelson also star.
Strongest opening of the week was Universal's romantic comedysequel Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason which bowed in fourth place on $8.9m on 530 screens for anexcellent $16,792 average despite average reviews.
This is a strong start giventhat Universal distribution chiefs plan to generate strong word of mouththrough a limited opening and will expand wide to more than 2,000 screens nextweekend.
Renee Zellweger reprises her role as the hapless Bridget, onceagain courted by love rivals Colin Firth and Hugh Grant. Beeban Kidrondirected.
Focus Features' Seed Of Chucky secured fifth place with an $8.8mopening haul that averaged $4,258 on 2,059 screens. The fifth episode in the Child'sPlay comedy-horrorseries was directed by Don Mancini and stars Brad Dourif and Jennifer Tilly.
Most of the remaining top 10 titles were shunted down four places.Universal's Ray passed$50m in its third weekend, while horror hit The Grudge in seventh is a day awayfrom passing $100m after adding $7.1m for $99.3m in its fourth weekend throughColumbia Pictures.
Saw,another horror title that is doing great business in theatres here, currentlyranks eighth on $45.7m in its third weekend on release through Lions Gate.Miramax's Shall We Dance' is approaching $50m after adding $4.1m for $48.7m in its fifthweekend.
Next weekend's wide releases are: Buena Vista's action adventure NationalTreasure starringNicolas Cage; Paramount's animated feature The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie; and the wide expansion of Universal's BridgetJones: The Edge Of Reason.
Estimated Top Ten US Nov 12-14 2004
Film (Distributor)/International distribution/Estimated weekendgross/Estimated total to date
1 (1) The Incredibles (Pixar/Disney) BVI $51m $144.1m
2 (-) The Polar Express (Warner Bros) Warner Bros Intl $23.5m $30.8m
3 (-) After The Sunset (New Line) NLI $11.5m -
4 (-) Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason (Universal) UIP $8.9m -
5 (-) Seed Of Chucky (Focus Features) Focus Features $8.8m -
6 (2) Ray (Universal)UIP $8.4m $52.5m
7 (3) The Grudge (Sony) Senator International $7.1m $99.3m
8 (4) Saw (LionsGate) LGFI $6.4m $45.7m
9 (6) Shall We Dance' (Miramax) Miramax International/BVI $4.1m $48.7m
10 (5) Alfie (Paramount) UIP $2.8m $11.1m