Angels and Demons has claimed the US box office number one spot after a $48 million (£31.6 million) opening weekend, it has been confirmed.

While Ron Howard's adaptation of the Dan Brown novel was never close to matching the $76 million (£50 million) opening of last week's number one, Star Trek, it toppled the intergalactic adventure from the top spot while claiming an impressive $104.3 million (£68.7 million) international opening.

A sequel of sorts to The Da Vinci Code - though the novel it is based on is a prequel to the Holy Grail bestseller - Angels and Demons sees Tom Hanks returning as symbology professor Robert Langdon who looks to crack the code behind a deadly conspiracy in Vatican City.

"That chemistry [of Hanks and Howard] worked incredibly well with Da Vinci and it looks like it's absolutely headed in that same vein, certainly on a lesser scale," said Sony's Rory Bruer.

"We never expected anything to the phenomenon of Da Vinci," he added in reference to The Da Vinci Code's $77.1 million (£50.7 million) opening in 2006, though reviews for Angels and Demons were more positive than its predecessor.

Star Trek fell to second in the US top ten but still performed well with a $43 million (£28.3 million) haul while X-Men Origins: Wolverine dropped one place to second.

The top ten films at the US box office are: (last week's position)

1 Angels & Demons (-)
2 Star Trek (1)
3 X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2)
4 Ghosts of Girlfriends Past (3)
5 Obsessed (4)
6 17 Again (5)
7 Monsters vs Aliens (8)
8 The Soloist (7)
9 Next Day Air (6)
10 Earth (9)

18/05/2009 09:19:40