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Monday, 3 July, 2000, 17:10 GMT 18:10 UK
Chicken Run rules cinema roost
Chicken Run
Chicken Run opened in the UK on Friday
Animated film Chicken Run grossed nearly £4m at the UK box office at the weekend - beating Notting Hill, which became the biggest British movie ever.

The film shot to the top of the British box office charts, and was the 14th biggest box office opener of all time.
Chicken Run
It beat the openings of both The Matrix and Notting Hill

The film's success in the UK comes as it slips from second to third place in its second week in the US box office charts, beaten by The Patriot and A Perfect Storm.

Early indications suggest it could pass the $50m (£33m) mark in the US by the end of the 4 July Independence Day holiday.

A spokeswoman for the film's UK backers, Pathé, said: "It's been an absolutely fantastic weekend for Chicken Run in Britain, so we're absolutely delighted."

UK takings were £3,848,755 for the film, based loosely on The Great Escape and featuring the voices of Mel Gibson, Miranda Richardson, Jane Horrocks and Julia Sawalha.

It is the first of five full-length films to be made by Bristol-based Aardman Animations - best known for its Wallace and Gromit films - with Steven Spielberg's Dreamworks company.

Work on the next feature is - a contemporary take on Aesop's Tortoise and the Hare fable - already underway.

George ClooneyA Perfect hit
George Clooney wins at the US box office

Behind the scenes of Chicken Run with creators Nick Park and Peter Lord
Chicken supremos

See also:

03 Jul 00 | Entertainment
Clooney wins box office fight
29 Jun 00 | Entertainment
Park and Lord's fowl play
27 Jun 00 | Entertainment
Connery coup for Chicken Run
26 Jun 00 | Entertainment
Carrey sends Chickens running
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