Lionsgate’s (NYSE:LGF) The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is set to take theaters by storm this weekend, when it is widely expected to compete with some of the biggest box office records of all time. Here are some projections for the weekend box office, which figures to be extremely top heavy with studios choosing to avoid a fight with Lionsgate’s sci-fi phenomenon.
1. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (Lionsgate)
There’s been zero doubt that Lionsgate’s The Hunger Games: Catching Fire would take first place this weekend — the question is how much the film will ultimately rack up after its first weekend in release. The film will be debuting in 4,162 theaters this weekend where Catching Fire has been projected to earn anywhere from $155 million to upwards of $180 million — the latter of which would give the film the second highest opening of all time behind The Avenger’s $207.4 million. Catching Fire is also a lock to earn the highest opening in November of all-time, which The Twilight Saga: New Moon currently owns with a $142.8 million opening.
Considering the huge fanfare and buzz surrounding the sequel, it certainly doesn’t seem overzealous to put Catching Fire’s numbers in the upper echelon of opening projections — especially when one considers that The Hunger Games, released in March 2012, earned $152.5 million in its opening weekend. Now, over a year since the first film’s release, Suzanne Collins’ series has overseen a surge in popularity, which could mean record box office numbers for the film, both in the opening weekend and in the long run.