Chinese martial arts movie Hero continues to shock Hollywood by notching up a second week as the country's top film.

The Zhang Yimou film, which is set in the third century BC and stars Jet LI, is one of three surprise summer hits which have kept the Labour Day weekend's (03-05SEP04) new releases well away from the top spot.

A relatively small $9 million (GBP5 million) was enough to keep Hero at the top over what is a traditionally slow time at the cinema.

The film was released in China two years ago (02), and was nominated for a foreign-language OSCAR last year (03).

Adventure comedy Without A Paddle crept up to number two with a $7.1 million (GBP3.94 million) weekend take and ANACONDA sequel ANACONDAS: THE HUNT FOR THE BLOOD ORCHID slipped to third with a $6.4 million (GBP3.5 million) take.

New films Paparazzi, THE COOKOUT, Wicker Park and Vanity Fair all fared poorly, with Reese Witherspoon's new period drama failing to make the top five with a disappointing five-day $6 million (GBP3.3 million) take.

06/09/2004 02:16