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Last Updated: Monday, 6 November 2006, 09:54 GMT
Borat scores surprise number one
Film still from Borat
Borat creator Sacha Baron Cohen has been invited to Kazakhstan
Spoof Kazakh reporter Borat - aka Ali G comedian Sacha Baron Cohen - has scored a surprise box office hit in the US.

The film - with its naked wrestling and toilet humour - took $26.4m (13.9m) in the US and Canada at the weekend, more than double estimated forecasts.

It was expected to open in the top five, but well behind The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause, which opened in second place with $20m (10.53m).

Borat opened in just 837 cinemas, while Santa Clause 3 debuted in 3,458.

Film industry insiders had not expected Borat - full title Borat: Cultural Learning of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan - to be as popular with mainstream audiences.

1. Borat ($26.4m)
2. The Santa Clause 3 ($20m)
3. Flushed Away ($19.1m)
4. Saw III ($15.5m)
5. The Departed ($8m)
6. The Prestige ($7.8m)
7. Flags of Our Fathers ($4.5m)
8. Man of the Year ($3.8m)
9. Open Season ($3.1m)
10. The Queen ($3m)
Source: Exhibitor Relations

Santa Claus 3, starring Tim Allen as Santa, failed to match the $29m (15.3m) start for its 2002 predecessor.

Animated comedy Flushed Away finished in third place with an estimated $19.1m (10m), according to preliminary figures from Exhibitor Relations.

The Aardman Animations film, about a pampered pet rat who is flushed down a toilet, features the voices of Kate Winslet and Hugh Jackman.

Horror film Saw III, the top earning film from last weekend, dropped to fourth place with takings of $15.5m (8.17m).

Director Martin Scorcese's drama The Departed, starring Jack Nicholson, Matt Damon and Leonardo DiCaprio, ranked fifth with earnings of $8m (4.2m).

Scarlett Johansson's latest release, The Prestige, followed in sixth place with $7.8m (4.1m).

Flags of Our Fathers, Man of the Year, Open Season and The Queen rounded out the top ten.

See clips from the film

Kazakhs counter Borat's 'fiction'
04 Nov 06 |  Entertainment
Press views: Borat's movie debut
03 Nov 06 |  Entertainment
'Sick man' Borat divides Kazakhs
26 Oct 06 |  Entertainment
How Borat hoaxed America
23 Oct 06 |  Entertainment
Kazakh invite for Borat creator
19 Oct 06 |  Entertainment
Kazakhs 'see funny side of Borat'
29 Sep 06 |  Entertainment
Kazakhs shut Ali G star's website
14 Dec 05 |  Entertainment


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