Tuesday, December 22, 2009

::Team New Moon:: "Avatar" fails to match New Moon at box office

LONDON (Reuters) - Director James Cameron's new movie "Avatar," considered one of the most expensive films ever made, dominated the box office on its first weekend but failed to reach the 10 million-pound mark.

The story of a man sent to infiltrate an alien race made 8.5 million pounds, according to Screen International on Tuesday, less than last month's vampire sequel "New Moon" which took 11.68 million and well down from the record UK 2009 opening of 19.8 million set by "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince."

Film studio 20th Century Fox has said it spent $237 million (147.9 million pounds) to make the movie, but some newspaper reports have estimated it cost at least $300 million.

Coming in at No. 2 was "St Trinian's 2: The Legend of Fritton's Gold," with the girls of St Trinian's searching for pirate treasure.

Last week's chart-topper, Walt Disney's high-tech adaptation of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol," was down at three, just above "Nativity," with two schools competing through Christmas plays, which rose two places to four.

"Planet 51," the story of an alien race living the life of 1950s America, was down two spots at five, with "Where the Wild Things Are" slipping four places to six with the tale of a boy trying to bring happiness to a magic kingdom.

"The Twilight Saga: New Moon," was down at seven from five, just above Gerard Butler as the "Law Abiding Citizen" avenging the murder of his wife and daughter who fell one place to eight.

Former chart-topper, horror thriller "Paranormal Activity," was the week's biggest faller, slipping five places to ninth.

Disaster movie "2012" was down at 10 from eighth spot.