Page last updated at 16:09 GMT, Sunday, 20 July 2008 17:09 UK

Dark Knight takes a record $155m

Christian Bale, as Batman and Heath Ledger as the Joker
Some supporters say Ledger should get a posthumous Oscar nomination

Batman film The Dark Knight has set a box office record for best opening weekend ever at the US box office, distributor Warner Bros has said.

The sequel took $155.3m (77.7m) in North America, beating the record set last year by Spider-Man 3, which took $151.1m (75.5m).

Batman, which opened on Friday, took $66.4m (33.2m), which was also a single-day box office record.

Directed by Christopher Nolan, it cost $185m (92.5m) to make.

Critics have praised the film, which stars Christian Bale as Batman and the late actor Heath Ledger, who plays the Joker.

'Proud'

"We have been thrilled by the response to The Dark Knight, first from the critics and now from audiences," said Dan Fellman, Warner's head of distribution.

Ledger died following a drug overdose in January aged 28.

Some supporters have suggested that he should get a posthumous Oscar nomination.

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Clips from the critically acclaimed The Dark Knight

Last week Ledger's co-stars paid tribute to him at the world premiere of the film in New York.

"We're very proud of the film," said Fellman.

"It's the magic of the movie business, how one film just stands out above the others."

The Dark Knight will have its UK premiere on 21 July.

The last Batman movie, Batman Begins, in 2005, grossed nearly $49 million in its first weekend in North America.

It went on to collect about $372 million worldwide.


SEE ALSO
Press views: The Dark Knight
15 Jul 08 |  Entertainment
Stars' tributes to Ledger's Joker
15 Jul 08 |  Entertainment
In pictures: Dark Knight premiere
15 Jul 08 |  Entertainment
Dark Knight dedicated to Ledger
27 Jun 08 |  Entertainment
Heath Ledger autopsy inconclusive
24 Jan 08 |  Entertainment

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