I guess Gary Ross and the boys and girls over at “The Hunger Games” aren’t going hungry anytime soon. The film opened to the tune of a studio estimated $155 million, good enough for third all-time, just behind “The Dark Knight” at second place and the last “Harry Potter” movie, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2″ sitting pretty at first place with $169 million.
In terms of non-sequel releases, though, “Games” was tops, easily besting the previous record holder, Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland” by nearly $40 million.
The Lionsgate film opened in 4,137 screens, which is actually over 200 screens less than both “Dark Knight” and “Harry Potter”. Both of those sequels ended up surpassing the $1 billion dollar mark, but it’s open to debate if “Hunger Games” will have those kind of repeat viewings, especially overseas where both movies did very well, especially “Harry Potter” given its International book fanbase. I’m not entirely sure how popular Suzanne Collins’ books are overseas, but it should do reasonably well in heavily English-speaking countries like the UK even without an existing book fanbase.
So yeah, expect production on parts two and three (and possibly four?) of “The Hunger Games” to start revving up very soon. Especially the second film, “Catching Fire”, which in many ways is the first movie all over again — just bigger and deadlier. The third film, on the other hand, will essentially turn the franchise into a war movie of “Saving Private Ryan” proportions. Which is why I think it might be a good idea (if not just from a creative standpoint, but also from a business perspective by Lionsgate) to cut the last book into two movies.
Via : Box Office Mojo