The Hunger Games Catching Fire Ignites the Weekend Box Office
The popularity of the “Hunger Games” movie franchise continues to grow, the latest installment is the long-awaited sequel and broke new records as fans should their support for the adaptation. In North America alone the film grossed just above $161 million in ticket sales from opening night (Thursday) through Sunday. This according to Lionsgate estimates.
The real battleground for Lionsgate was getting men involved in the dystopian society. For the first film they had no trouble coaxing female viewers to buy tickets, an estimated 71 percent of all tickets were female for the original. Now with a new marketing stance and a focus on action, this year it was estimated that 59 percent of the opening-weekend attendees were female. That’s quite a jump in male-viewers, and something that Lionsgate marketers should be very proud of.
The film took home a new record as well, Catching Fire is now the largest domestic opening in the month of November. That wasn’t an easy film to topple either, the previous record holder was “The Twilight Saga: New Moon” back in 2009. You can add about $146 million in overseas releases for opening weekend, a market that the first film failed to penetrate as much as competitive films like ‘Iron Man 3’ and ‘Twilight’ easily succeeded in.
This film also bumped up the budget, to pay for all that new action, jumping from $78 million for the first film to $130 million for the sequel. Some of that went to the lovable Katniss Evergreen, played by Jennifer Lawrence, who it was reported took home an initial salary of $500,000 for the first film and $10 million for the sequel. It really helps your bottom-line to take home an Oscar. Filming the battle-scenes in IMAX standard also inflated the budget this year.
There were 4,163 locations in North America that fans could see ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’. You will no doubt see more advertising as time moves on towards the holidays. Then we will have ‘The Hobbit’ sequel to tackle, and more coffers to count.