The Inbetweeners 2 has proved to be a hit with the biggest opening weekend of the year, but takings are down on the first film.

The movie took £12.5 million as cinemagoers flocked to catch up on the adventures of Will, Simon, Jay and Neil as they headed to Australia.

But it was down on the £13.2 million taken over that period when their first big screen escapade was released in 2011, the best-ever opening for a British comedy. It went on to take in excess of £45 million at the UK box office that year.

The Inbetweeners 2 took £2.7 million during its first day of release last week, thought to be the biggest ever opening day for a comedy at the UK box office.

The stars of the comedy – which began life as a series on E4 – said last week at the London premiere that they doubted there would be another film.

Simon Bird, who plays Will, said: “Once you see the film you’ll see it feels like they’ve all moved on with their lives, so unfortunately this is it. It’s a great way of saying goodbye.”