Americans went back to the movies over the weekend as three new films opened well and box office was up 52% on last weekend and 26% up on the same weekend last year.

20th Century Fox's psychological thriller Don't Say A Word, produced by New Regency Productions, was the box office champion over the weekend, taking $18m. Directed by Gary Fleder and starring Michael Douglas as a psychiatrist whose daughter is abducted by ex-cons who need him to extract a six digit number from one of his patients. It co-stars Britanny Murphy, Sean Bean, Oliver Platt and Famke Janssen.

Second, with $15.7m, was Zoolander, Paramount/VH1 FIlms' comedy feature based on a comic male model character created by Ben Stiller for music network VH1. Stiller co-wrote, directed and starred in the film. Co-stars include Stiller's wife Christine Taylor, his father Jerry Stiller and Owen Wilson. Its screen average was $6,262 just $400 per screen less than Don't Say A Word.

The third opener was Warner Bros' Hearts In Atlantis, produced by Castle Rock Entertainment, which grossed $9.5m for the number three slot. Directed by Scott Hicks and starring Anthony Hopkins, it is scripted by William Goldman from a short story by Stephen King about a mysterious man who moves in above a single mother and her son one summer. Playing at 1,751 sites, it had a screen average of $5,445.

The three openers dominated the box office, although Paramount's Hardball and Dimension's The Others continued to pull audiences, taking over $5m apiece. The Others has now grossed $87m and is set to top the $100m mark in the next month.

Opening next weekend and hoping to keep the upward trend at the nation's box office are four wide releases - Miramax's romantic comedy Serendipity, Warner Bros' delayed police drama Training Day, Buena Vista's family comedy Max Keeble's Big Move and 20th Century Fox's teen thriller Joy Ride.

Film (Distributor)/International distribution/Estimated weekend gross/Estimated total to date
1 (-) Don't Say A Word (20th Century Fox) Fox International/Regency $18m --
2 (-) Zoolander (Paramount) UIP $15.7m --
3 (-) Hearts In Atlantis (Warner Bros) Warner Bros $9.5m --
4 (1) Hardball (Paramount) Fireworks Pictures $5.2m $26.3m
5 (2) The Others (Dimension) StudioCanal $5.1m $87m
6 (5) Rush Hour 2 (New Line) New Line International $2.7m $219m
7 (3) The Glass House (Columbia) Columbia TriStar $2.1m $15m
8 (7) Rat Race (Paramount) Fireworks Pictures $1.8m $54m
9 (4) The Musketeer (Universal) MDP Worldwide $1.7m $25.5m
10 (6) Two Can Play That Game (Screen Gems) Columbia TriStar $1.6m $20.6m