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Last Updated: Wednesday November 23 2005 16:03 GMT

Potter helps UK cinemas to record

Devon Murray as Seamus Finnigan and Emma Watson as Hermione Grainger
More people went to the cinema in the UK on the opening weekend of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire than any other weekend in the last 20 years.

According to the Film Distributors' Association (FDA), 3.8m people bought cinema tickets between Friday 18 and Sunday 20 November.

Unsurprisingly most of those tickets - 3m of them - were for Harry Potter.

But other films like Nanny McPhee and Wallace & Gromit: The Curse Of The Were-Rabbit also did really well.

The chief executive of the FDA, Mark Batey, thinks part of the reason for the number of tickets sold is UK cinema fans are enjoying really good British films.

Harry Potter was written by JK Rowling and the film directed by Brit Mike Newell.

British actress Emma Thompson wrote and stars in Nanny McPhee, while Wallace and Gromit is written and made by Aardman Animations from Bristol.

"British films have accounted for 31% of ticket sales at UK cinemas so far this year compared to 23% over the same period last year - and that doesn't include the latest film in the Harry Potter series."

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