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Big Fish hooks Jackson's Return of the King in its net



Story by: Jack Foley

TIM Burton went fishing for the number one spot at the US Box Office at the weekend, and looks to have caught a piece of cinema history.

His new movie, Big Fish, starring Ewan McGregor and Albert Finney, took virtually the same amount of money as Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, prompting the US box office officials to delay announcing the top spot until final figures could be confirmed on Monday.

The Return of the King has already enjoyed a three-week stint in top spot, thanks to overwhelming critical praise and audience anticipation, but, according to Sunday’s estimates, could be nudged into second place by Big Fish, which enjoyed takings of $14.1 million (£7.6 million).

Paul Dergarabedian, president of box office monitor Exhibitor Relations, said that it was ‘very rare’ to have a ‘photo finish’ for the number one spot in America.

Critics have hailed Big Fish, about the relationship between a dying father with a penchant for storytelling and his estranged son, as a return to form by Burton, after the critical derision which greeted his ramke of Planet of the Apes.

Big Fish enjoyed a limited theatrical release in the States in December, as part of its bid for an Academy Award nomination.

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