So, The Hunger Games has made me think harder about the nature of cinema and its ability to influence an audience than any film that's come out this year, but it looks like, regardless of the film's subtexts, a lot of people just want to see pretty teenagers slaughter each other. It's no particular surprise that The Hunger Games sold more tickets for a midnight showing than any non-sequel in history, especially coming a couple of days after Fandango announced that it pre-sold more tickets than any previous non-sequel; one has to imagine that many of the Fandango tickets were for the exact same midnight shows. Still, the film's $19.75 million in midnight sales is an impressive feat, one rivaled only by the Twilight and Harry Potter films of last year.
While it's going to be a while before anything challenges Deathly Hallows: Part 2's ridiculous $169 million opening weekend from last year (I'd say The Dark Knight Rises has a shot at it), The Hunger Games is looking like it might beat out even the last couple of Twilight Saga films; New Moon conquered the box office when it opened with $142 million. Early (very early) predictions are that The Hunger Games could net as much as $150 million in its opening weekend, based on not just the midnight numbers but also extremely strong showings in matinees around the country.
So, mo' money for Lions Gate. Planning on seeing The Hunger Games this weekend and adding your chips to the pile? Or are you going to try and track down a showing of The Raid: Redemption?