Based on the enormity of tracking for The Hunger Games, the Lionsgate movie has the potential to score one of the top debuts of all time at the domestic box office.
Hunger Games, which opens March 23, is even tracking better than The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1. That film opened in November to $138.1 million, the fifth-best debut of all time domestically, but had the advantage of bowing the weekend before Thanksgiving, when some kids are out of school.
Box-office observers say it’s difficult to predict exactly how much Hunger Games will make, offering a more conservative estimate of $100 million to $120 million. They say it’s difficult to predict a number when tracking becomes this big and a film gets into the $100 million-plus range.
Hunger Games certainly has a shot at taking the crown for best March opening from Alice in Wonderland, which debuted to $116.1 million in 2010.
Tracking data released Monday showed definite interest in Hunger Games jumping from 55 percent to 60 percent in the past week, awareness went from 75 percent to 83 percent, unaided awareness from 14 percent to 21 percent and awareness from 75 percent to 83 percent.
“Numbers don’t get much higher than this,” said one rival studio executive. “Hunger Games is tracking like a sequel, even though it isn’t a sequel. It’s three times higher than the first Twilight.”
Interest among younger women in Hunger Games is now at 45 percent, compared with 36 percent forBreaking Dawn. Among female over the age of 25, interest is 29 percent, versus 27 percent forBreaking Dawn.
One advantage that Hunger Games has over Summit Entertainment’s blockbuster Twilight franchise is male interest.
Monday’s tracking showed that Interest in Hunger Games among males younger than 25 was a healthy 28 percent, compared to 10 percent for Breaking Dawn. Interest among males over 25 was 20 percent, versus 8 percent for the fourth Twilight film.
“These are huge, stupid numbers,” one box-office observer said.
(Source: The Hollywood Reporter)