Vince Vaughn's Christmas comedy Fred Claus has topped the UK box office charts after its opening weekend, with £1.93 million in ticket receipts.

The family film sees Vaughn as the black sheep brother of Paul Giamatti's Santa Claus, forced to return to the North Pole when he is released from prison only to discover a corporate plot to bring down Saint Nick.

Opening on 445 screens, the David Dobkin movie pushed new videogame adaptation Hitman into second place, with the Timothy Olyphant-starring shoot-'em-up garnering £1.24 million at the box office.

The previous week's number one film, American Gangster, dropped to third position after two weeks at the top, taking £1.03 million in its third week in UK cinemas.

The impressive openings of Fred Claus and Hitman also caused four hits to fall in the charts, with Beowulf, Stardust, Ratatouille and The Darjeeling Limited all dropping to fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh respectively.

Dane Cook's romantic comedy Good Luck Chuck held on to a top ten spot while the Brad Pitt period drama The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford entered in tenth position after a limited opening weekend on just 61 screens.

05/12/2007 11:57:06