Avatar closes in on box office record

James Cameron’s 3D adventure has now earned $552 million (£345 million) in America, putting it within touching distance of the current box office record holder, the director’s 1997 epic Titanic – which took $601 million (£375 million).

Paul Bettany’s post-apocalypse thriller Legion took $18.2 million (£11.37 million) to secure second place, ahead of Denzel Washington and Gary Oldman’s The Book of Eli.

The week’s big disappointment was Harrison Ford drama Extraordinary Measures, which took just $7 million (£4.3 million) during its opening weekend.