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Monday, 5 August, 2002, 09:47 GMT 10:47 UK
Crop circle chiller tops box office
Mel Gibson
Signs is Mel Gibson's second hit film this year
The latest film from The Sixth Sense director M Night Shyamalan has shot to the top of the North American box office chart, taking $60.3m (38.4m) in its opening weekend.

Signs, a sci-fi thriller starring Mel Gibson, focuses on a clergyman whose family are plagued by tragedy, aliens, and the appearance of mysterious crop circles in the fields around their house.

It is the biggest ever opening weekend for both Gibson and Shyamalan, and is Gibson's second chart-topping film of 2002, following on from the Vietnam war drama We Were Soldiers.

It also marks a return to the top of the box office chart for Disney, who have not had a number one film since Monsters Inc in November 2001.

US and Canada weekend box office
1. Signs - $60.3m
2. Goldmember - $32.4m
3.Master Of Disguise - $13.0m
4. Martin Lawrence Live: Runteldat - $7.5m
5. Road To Perdition - $6.6m
6. Stuart Little 2 - $6.0m
7. Men In Black II - $4.7m
8. My Big Fat Greek Wedding - $3.0m
9= K-19: The Widowmaker - $3.0m
9= The Country Bears - $3.0m
Source:
Exhibitor Relations
Disney spokesman Chuck Viane credited the film's success on the originality of its script, saying there was little other challenging, intelligent fare currently showing.

Last week's box office champion, Austin Powers in Goldmember, fell to number two with a weekend total of $30.2m (19.2m).

The third film in the spy spoof series, which stars Mike Myers, has taken $143m (91.2m) in the US after just a fortnight.

Myers' former Wayne's World partner Dana Carvey debuted at number three in the charts with Master Of Disguise, which took $13m (8.2m)

Carvey plays 36 different roles in the film, about a mild-mannered waiter who inherits the ability to disguise himself as anyone or anything.

The only other new entry in the chart was Martin Lawrence: Runteldat, a film of the comedian in concert. It entered the top ten at number four with $7.5m (4.7m).

Two of the summer's most anticipated films - family comedy Stuart Little 2 and sub thriller K19: The Widowmaker, starring Harrison Ford, continued their descent down the chart.

Mel Gibson in Signs
Joaquin Phoenix plays Gibson's brother in Signs
Stuart Little 2 has made less than half the amount of money its predecessor made in 2000, while K19 looks unlikely to recoup its $100m (63m) budget in its home market, making just $31m (19.7m) after three weeks.

Next weekend sees the last of the major summer blockbusters battling it out - Spy Kids 2: The Island Of Lost Dreams will go head to head with another spy thriller, XXX.

The latter, which stars Vin Diesel, has been heavily hyped in the US and is expected to do so well that sequels have already been planned.

See also:

04 Mar 02 | Entertainment
29 Dec 00 | Entertainment
06 Feb 01 | Entertainment
29 Jul 02 | Entertainment
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