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Despicable Me 2 tops 2013 hit list

Despicable Me 2 was the biggest hit film of last year, pulling in more than £47 million at the box office, according to figures released by the film industry.

Other big hits included The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug and Les Miserables, both of which took more than £40 million at cinemas in the UK and Republic of Ireland.

The biggest independent release was Philomena, with Steve Coogan and Dame Judi Dench, which grossed over £11 million.

Figures from the British Film Institute (BFI) show it is the third year running that more than £1 billion was spent at the box office, but they also show the number of British-produced films at a five-year low of 239 - 86 fewer than the year before.

Researchers also found takings down by 1% on 2012 and a 4% dip in tickets sales.

Film production generated a total spend of £1.075 billion in 2013, a 14% increase on 2012's £945 million.

The vast majority of that - £868 million - was generated by 37 major international movies including The Man From UNCLE, Muppets Most Wanted and Before I Go To Sleep.

Chancellor George Osborne said the figures "highlight the valuable cultural and economic contribution that our creative industries make to the UK".

BFI boss Amanda Nevill said they showed the UK "is a leading international player in this sector".

The 20 highest-grossing films released in the UK and Republic of Ireland in 2013:

1. Despicable Me 2 - £47.46 million

2. The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug - £41.59 million

3. Les Miserables - £40.82 million

4. Iron Man 3 - £36.97 million

5. Frozen - £34.17 million

6. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire - £33.79 million

7. Monsters University - £30.69 million

8. Man Of Steel - £29.95 million

9. Gravity - £28.85 million

10. The Croods - £26.78 million

11. Star Trek: Into Darkness - £25.82 million

12. Fast And Furious 6 - £25.27 million

13. Wreck-It Ralph - £23.78 million

14. Thor: The Dark World - £19.85 million

15. The Hangover Part III - £19.32 million

16. Captain Phillips - £16.09 million

17. Django Unchained - £15.74 million

18. The Great Gatsby - £15.73 million

19. Oz: The Great And Powerful - £15.28 million

20. World War Z - £14.57 million

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