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Les Miserables tops UK box office with highest ever musical opening

Les Miserables

Story by Jack Foley

TOM Hooper’s big screen version of stage hit Les Miserables has shot to the top of the UK box office.

In doing so, it has also become the biggest ever UK opening for a movie musical, beating a record set by Mamma Mia! in 2008.

The film, starring Hugh Jackman and Anne Hathaway, recorded three-day takings of £8.13 million in the UK and Ireland, compared to the £5.2m that the Abba-based stage-to-screen transfer took in its opening weekend.

Internationally, Les Miserables also continued to be a success, having now taken more than $200m (£124.6m). It has also attracted multiple Oscar and BAFTA nominations and saw Hugh Jackman and Anne Hathaway recognised with acting honours at Sunday’s Golden Globes (as well as taking best musical).

Commenting on the UK figures, Eric Fellner, of film company Working Title, said: “It’s fantastic to see Les Miserables become the top-grossing film at the UK box office. We’re incredibly proud that this film, like the stage play, is proving to be a truly global phenomenon.”

Ang Lee’s Life of Pi rose one place to second, its weekend tally of £2.34m taking its overall UK and Ireland haul to almost £22m.

But star-studded gangster movie Gangster Squad could only enter the charts at three with takings of £2.09m, mirroring its disappointing US performance.

Last week’s top movie, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, fell to four having sold £1.86m worth of tickets between Friday and Sunday, while rounding out the top five was tsunami-drama The Impossible, starring Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor.

Next story: Zero Dark Thirty tops US box office