'Downton Abbey' faces down Rambo and Brad Pitt to top the US box office

Ben Arnold
Contributor
Downton Abbey (Credit: Focus Features)

It may be genteel, but Downton Abbey proved more robust that both John Rambo and Brad Pitt at the US box office over the weekend.

The feature-length episode of the ITV series has hit screens in the US, and, despite winding up its last season on TV in 2015, it is now sitting at the top of the box office chart.

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While it was a relatively sedate weekend, blockbusters-wise, it still opened to $31 million – around £25 million – the highest take for a movie made by Focus Features, beating previous record-holder, Insidious: Chapter 3.

Praising the movie's performance, Focus distribution president Lisa Bunnell said: “Audiences were clearly ready to come back to Downton and visit the Crawleys and all the familiar faces upstairs and downstairs.

“At its core, it’s a story about family and audiences, both original fans and newcomers, are uplifted by that laughter and joy of the film.”

(Credit: Focus Features)

Both Rambo: Last Blood, which has been panned by critics, and Brad Pitt-fronted space movie Ad Astra brought in around $19 million each.

Despite the decidedly mild reviews, this brings the Downton's worldwide box office total to $61 million – nearly £50 million.

It could potentially add additional momentum to talk of a sequel.

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“[The movie] certainly leaves some ties left undone,” Michelle Dockery told People. “I think there are a few of those in the film. There’s this feeling of the next phase, the next generation. So who knows?”

Hugh Bonneville added: “It’s sort of a complete downer because there’s not another one next week. There is an appetite and an affection for it that hopefully we can satisfy in the future.”

Downton Abbey is out now across the UK.