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‘The Hunger Games’ Opens to $68 Million

Lionsgate

The Hunger Games‘  made $68.2 Million in its first 24 hours, which makes it the fifth highest opening day of all time. After the $19.7 Million midnight shows, this might seem a little weak, but as it’s not based on an existing franchise, this makes it the highest single day for a non-sequel in cinema.

The opening day numbers are excellent, the question is how well the film does for the rest of its run. Where other huge first day openers were drawing on a pre-existing audience, here there’s a stronger possibility for newcomers and the curious and less need to see it on first day. It will be interesting to see how front-loaded it is, or if – like its numbers – it behaves like a franchise film.

The greatest three-day and single day total come from ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2,’ which was the final chapter of an eight film cycle. Its opening weekend was $169 Million. The second highest opening weekend is currently ‘The Dark Knight’ with $158 Million. These records are out of each, but it’s possible that it will break the $138 Million made by ‘Breaking Dawn Part I’ of the ‘Twilight’ films to become the highest grossing film that either Summit or Lionsagate have released.

When the film was announced, there was a ton of hoopla. Now it feels justified. It seems impossible at this juncture for the film to make less than $120 Million for the weekend, so expect it to do over $300 domestic. Though some sequels have opened to higher and not crossed that threshold, this is a first film, which should give it a longer staying power. At least, one would think.

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