Weekend Predictions: 'The Hunger Games'

Featured Stories - on March 21, 2012 by Phil Contrino

hungergamesprediction32312.jpgLionsgate's The Hunger Games is poised to make March feel more like July at the box office this coming weekend.

The exhibition side of the industry has been bugging distributors to release tentpoles throughout the yearnot just during the summer and the holiday seasonand now distributors are finally listening. The Hunger Games would have no problem competing with the likes of The Dark Knight Rises and The Amazing Spider-Man this summer, but Lionsgate is wisely avoiding any unnecessary battles by releasing its prized property now. It's a smart move that is going to pay off in a major way.

Based on strong Facebook and Twitter activity, it's clear that The Hunger Games is not only connecting with the millions who have read the books but also with casual moviegoers looking for blockbuster entertainment. Early on, The Hunger Games was being labeled as "the next Twilight." Forget it. The "next Harry Potter" is beginning to make more sense. The first Twilight film opened to $69.6 million or $76 million when adjusting for inflation, while the first Harry Potter debuted to $90.3 million or $125.1 million adjusted. All signs indicate that The Hunger Games will end up closer to Potter than Twilight this weekend.

Early sales on Fandango are phenomenal. The ticketing site reports that The Hunger Games is now in fifth place on the list of advanced sellers, right behind The Twilight Saga: Eclipse. More tickets have been sold on Fandango for The Hunger Games than the first Twilight film sold during its entire theatrical run. 2,000+ shows of the sci-fi flick are already sold out.

Look for The Hunger Games to grab $125 million from more than 4,000 locations during its debut frame. That will be enough to top the March opening-weekend record of $116 million set by Alice in Wonderland in 2010. 

Check out our top 10 predictions in the table below.

Title Release Date Distributor Weekend Gross
Cumulative
The Hunger Games Mar 23, 2012 Lionsgate
$125,000,000 $125,000,000
21 Jump Street Mar 16, 2012 Sony / Columbia
$21,000,000 $71,300,000
Dr. Seuss' The Lorax Mar 2, 2012 Universal
$13,000,000 $177,300,000
John Carter Mar 9, 2012 Disney
$7,000,000 $64,500,000
Project X (2012) Mar 2, 2012 Warner Bros.
$2,200,000 $52,100,000
A Thousand Words Mar 9, 2012 Paramount
$2,100,000 $15,100,000
Act of Valor Feb 24, 2012 Relativity Media
$2,000,000 $65,900,000
Safe House Feb 10, 2012 Universal
$1,600,000 $122,800,000
Journey 2: The Mysterious Island Feb 10, 2012 Warner Bros. / New Line
$1,400,000 $97,200,000
Casa de mi Padre Mar 16, 2012 Lionsgate
$1,300,000 $4,100,000

Additional reporting by Daniel Garris and Alex Edghill.

Tags: The Hunger Games

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