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Last Updated: Monday, 22 November, 2004, 09:45 GMT
SpongeBob squeezed at box office
Nicolas Cage
Nicolas Cage's new film National Treasure is a family-oriented release
Nicolas Cage's latest film National Treasure pipped The SpongeBob Squarepants Movie to be the top film at the US and Canada weekend box office.

National Treasure, which sees Cage chase a hidden fortune, made $35.3m (19m) in ticket sales from Friday to Sunday, according to studio estimates.

The big screen debut of cartoon star SpongeBob was close behind with $33.5m.

Another animation, The Incredibles, which had been at number one for two weeks, fell to number three.

Cage's new film, which has been made by Disney Studios, is his first mainstream hit for four years.

It is his fourth collaboration with Jerry Bruckheimer, who is usually noted for his male-orientated action films.

TOP 10 US FILMS
1. National Treasure
2. SpongeBob Squarepants
3. The Incredibles
4. Polar Express
5. Bridget Jones
6. After The Sunset
7. Ray
8. The Grudge
9. Seed Of Chucky
10. Saw

But National Treasure is aimed at a more family-based audience, and drew in a crowd from all backgrounds.

It beat the box office returns of Bruckheimer and Cage's 2000 movie Gone In Sixty Seconds.

Subsequent releases starring Cage such as Captain Corelli's Mandolin failed to attract such big audiences.

The 40-year-old actor won an Oscar for his role in Leaving Las Vegas.

SpongeBob SquarePants
Spongebob is not just a hit with children
The SpongeBob Squarepants movie is based on the hit cartoon series screened on the Nickleodeon channel, and tells the story of the sea sponge and his deep sea friends.

Although it is primarily a children's film, US exit polls suggested almost half of its audiences were non-family.

The film's producer, Julia Pistor, said a SpongeBob sequel is unlikely, despite its healthy box office performance.

Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason remained at number five in North America, but is still top of the box office in nine countries, including the UK.




SEE ALSO:
Third marriage for Nicolas Cage
31 Jul 04 |  Entertainment
Getting to know SpongeBob
19 Nov 04 |  Entertainment
Camp cartoon star 'is not gay'
09 Oct 02 |  Entertainment


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