Universal'saction extravaganza The Rundownslammed its way to the top on $18m at the weekend, confirming The Rock's earlypromise as a charismatic star with box office brawn.

Theformer wrestling star - who uses his real name Dwayne Johnson these days -stars as a mercenary who gets caught up in the Amazon with an errant familyheir and an evil gold prospector.

PeterBerg's film received very good reviews and averaged $5,869 from 3,152 sites.Seann William Scott, Christopher Walken and Rosario Dawson also star.

BuenaVista's love story Under The Tuscan Sun scored an excellent $9.4m opening in second.

Basedon the memoir by Frances Mayes, Diane Lane plays a recent divorcee withwriter's block who starts a new life in Italy.

AudreyWells' film garnered decent reviews and averaged $7,672 from 1,226 sites. RaoulBova and Sandra Oh also star.

Theonly other top ten opener was Miramax's black comedy Duplex, which placed seventh on a disappointing $4.4m.

BenStiller and Drew Barrymore play a Manhattan couple who must kill an elderlywoman in order to move into their dream apartment.

Thepoorly received film cost roughly $40m and averaged $2,017 from 2,189 venues.Danny De Vito directed and Eileen Essell and Harvey Fierstein co-star.

ScreenGems' supernatural action film Underworld slipped two places to third in its second week, adding $9.4m for a $37mrunning total.

FocusFeatures' impressive Lost In Translation held firm in 10th place as it took in another $3.5m in its third weekfor an $8.5m cumulative score.

NewLine's family movie Secondhand Lionsslipped two to fourth in its second week, adding $8.3m for $23.5m, whileColumbia's Once Upon A Times In Mexico fell two to sixth in its third week, grossing $5.1m for $49.1m.

BuenaVista's Pirates Of The Caribbeanfell out of the top 10 for the first time in its 12-week run, but is certain tobe a talking point again when it passes $300m. It added $2.4m for $295.7m,slipping three places to 12th.

Overallbox office for the top 12 films came to $79m, down 14% against the same periodlast year when Sweet Home Alabamaopened top on $36m.

Nextweek's releases include MGM/UA's thriller Out Of Time, starring Denzel Washington and Eva Mendes; andParamount's comedy School Of Rock,which stars Jack Black and Joan Cusack.

EstimatedTop Ten US Sept 26-28, 2003

Film(Distributor)/International distribution/Estimated weekend gross/Estimatedtotal to date

1(-) The Rundown (Universal) CTFDI$18.5m -

2(-) Under The Tuscan Sun (BuenaVista) BVI $9.4m -

3(1) Underworld (Screen Gems)Lakeshore International $9.4m $37m

4(2) Secondhand Lions (New Line)NLI $8.3m $23.5m

5(3) The Fighting Temptations(Paramount) UIP $6.5m $20.2m

6(4) Once Upon A Time In Mexico(Columbia) Miramax/CTFDI $5.1m $49.1m

7(-) Duplex (Miramax) MiramaxInternational $4.4m -

8(5) Cold Creek Manor (BuenaVista) BVI $4.3m $14.5m

9(6) Matchstick Men (Warner Bros)Warner Bros $4.3m $30.6m

10 (10) Lost InTranslation (Focus) Focus $3.5m$8.5m