Director M Night Shyamalan has hit box office gold with his latest film THE VILLAGE, which has taken the number one spot in the American and Canadian cinema chart.

The supernatural thriller - which stars Joaquin Phoenix and OSCAR winner ADRIEN BRODY - took $50.8 million (GBP27.8 million) in its opening weekend, beating THE Bourne Supremacy into second place.

The 19th century tale of woodland creatures has added to the staggering summer takings of $1.3 billion (GBP710 million).

President of box office tracking firm EXHIBITOR RELATIONS, PAUL DERGARABEDIAN, says, "We're on a pretty good roll right now.

"This is a very strong summer to wind up. Usually, by August, things are really slowing down."

Denzel Washington's remake of The Manchurian Candidate took $20.3 million (GBP11 million) and made it to third place.

However Thunderbirds could only manage 11th place in its first week of release - taking $2.7 million (GBP1.48 million).

02/08/2004 17:29