Bryan Cranston and Kevin Hart's The Upside has ended Aquaman's reign over the North American box office.

Based on a true story, the Hollywood remake of 2011 French-language film The Intouchables stars Cranston as a quadriplegic aristocrat who forms an unlikely friendship with his ex-con caregiver, played by Hart.

The Upside has received a largely negative response from critics, giving it just a 39 per cent approval rating on review site, but film fans have been more receptive to the uplifting story, and have flocked to theatres, helping to take the movie to number one with an estimated $19.6 million (£15.2 million) in its opening weekend - almost double experts' initial estimates.

The news also comes on the heels of Kevin's Oscars hosting controversy, stepping down as MC for the 2019 ceremony after a series of derogatory Twitter comments aimed at the gay and lesbian community, dating back to 2008, resurfaced online.

The Upside replaces Aquaman as the king of the North American box office, after dominating for three consecutive weeks.

The DC Comics blockbuster, starring Jason Momoa as the titular superhero, slips into second place with a solid $17.3 million (£13.5 million), but the figure has helped to boost the movie's global total to crack the $1 billion mark, making it Warner Bros.' first to surpass the milestone since 2012's The Dark Knight Rises.

Meanwhile, A Dog's Way Home opens in third place with $11.3 million (£8.8 million), ahead of the animated Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse at four, and Escape Room rounding out the new top five.

Failing to enter the top 10 this week (ends13Jan19) was Keanu Reeve's new sci-fi film Replicas, which flopped with fans and critics alike, earning just $2.2 million (£1.7 million) on wide release. The debut is the worst of the actor's career.