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Great Odin's Raven!
Anchorman ISN'T no. 1 at the UK Box Office!

14 September 2004  |  Written by   

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Son of a bee-sting! Readers, we can barely keep our heads clear enough to write this UK box office news story, so appalled, shocked, dismayed, discombobulated, and plain angered are we by the news that our beloved Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy isn't no. 1 at the UK box office. More on that later, but for now we have to take some deep breaths and calm down...

Clearly the British love of the underdog has played its part at the box office this weekend. Low budget chiller Open Water - which, last time we checked, wasn't Anchorman - has taken the number one spot at the box office with a very respectable take of £1.97 million.

For those who haven't gone to see it yet (and there can't be that many of you) it's about a couple left behind in the middle of the ocean after a snorkelling trip, and their close encounters of the shark kind. Made for a mere $130,000-odd, the film looks like making Blair Witch-style profits.

Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg's The Terminal (which also isn't Anchorman) held on to the number two spot with £1.1 million, which for any other low-key airport drama would be fantastic, but is arguably disappointing coming from two of the biggest names in Hollywood.

Meanwhile, the sublimely funny Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story (as it's just as funny as Anchorman, we'll let it pass)made £992,000 in third place, demonstrating that there's always room for a film where young men are hit repeatedly with large rubber balls.

Pissed off, cigar-chewing supernatural crime fighter Hellboy (ok, we'll let this pass, too, but it's still not Anchorman) managed fourth with £632,000, bringing its total to a respectable £2.13 million but marking a 40% drop since last week.

And then we come to the wondrous and life-affirming Will Ferrell comedy, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy which crept into a disappointing fifth place - news that prompted our News Editor to throw a Ron Burgundy-esque fit of rage and declare that he was 'in a glass case of emotion'.

OK, so it opened on almost 100 fewer screens than Open Water and we know that Ferrell has yet to be fully embraced by the British public. But frankly we're disgusted by the turnout here. People of the United Kingdom, this is a movie of such inspired lunacy and astonishingly quotable one-liners ("There were horses, and a man on fire, and I stabbed a guy through the heart with a trident", "It works 60% of the time... everytime" and "I'm going to punch you in the ovary, right in the babymaker" to name but three) that you HAVE to see it. It is your duty. No, it is your destiny...

You have been charged, people. If Anchorman isn't in the Top 3 by next weekend, we're going to come round to each and every one of your houses and stamp on your prize dahlias.

Elsewhere in the list, The Bourne Supremacy and The Motorcycle Diaries continued to do well, while Morgan Spurlock's fast food documentary Super Size Me managed only ninth place with £265,000. That's actually a pretty respectable take, given that it's on a mere 82 screens. In fact, it averaged the second best screen average of the week, just behind Open Water. Don't be surprised if it expands to more cinemas next week.

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