6TH/7TH/8TH UPDATE, Sunday 12:17AM/7:50AM/10:18AM: Lionsgate is reporting that The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2, the last film in the feature adaptation of Suzanne Collins’ best-selling YA lit series, is opening at $101M, which makes it the lowest opening in the franchise. Many think it will do, in its actuals, $102.4M. Last year the opening for Mockingjay – Part 1 fell to $121.M after 2013’s Catching Fire set a franchise opening record of $158M. The outlook months ago was that MJ2 would certainly best its predecessor’s opening. Not only because MJ2 would have Imax, but because that’s what happened with the final book-splits on the big screen with The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn and Harry Potter.
'Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2' Review: Jennifer Lawrence Fights To Finish In Dark Finale
While it’s petty to pick at a film that posted the fifth best opening of 2015, and one of 34 titles that opened to $100M-plus, it’s a 35% decline in opening cash between Catching Fire and MJ2. One rival distribution chief commented that MJ2‘s lower opening was a result of some blowback from MJ1′s lower-than-expected results, and the somber tone of a source book that lacked the huzzah of the first two entries. Not to spoil any endings for MJ2, but it doesn’t end entirely on an upbeat note like Harry Potter.
Was it a good idea for Lionsgate to split up the books into two films? Per several rival Lionsgate executives: Without question. Duh. Each film has averaged close to $800M worldwide, even though Lionsgate sells off foreign. Catching Fire alone churned out close to $295M in profit after theatrical, home entertainment and TV. MJ1 was in the black with close to $212M profit, and many say MJ2 will clear a profit in theatrical before hitting TV and home entertainment from $140M overseas pre-sales and a domestic rental of at least 50-55%.
Said one major studio distribution chief, “Whenever a distributor like Lionsgate doesn’t have a multi-prong franchise like a Marvel, DC Comics or Star Wars, and they find a way to divide up a tentpole into two movies at a reasonable price, more power to them. Even if it does 10-30% less in its opening, they’re still stacking up money.”
Says Lionsgate’s co-president Domestic Theatrical Distribution about splitting up the last book, “The sum of Mockingjay 1 and 2 is an unbelievable result, and we wouldn’t go any other direction. We’re entering a very lucrative period at the box office and Mockingjay will continue to benefit greatly from that.”
Aesthetically, one producer who spoke to Deadline thought it made sense for Mockingjay to be split up into two films because of its 390 page source material, but something like The Hobbit being divided into three titles didn’t make sense. You can argue with the accountants at Warner Bros. about that one. The first Hobbit made over $1B, while parts 2 and 3 made in excess of $950M at the global B.O. It’s the type of box office that makes shareholders happy.
While we went through a period at the box office in the latter part of the aughts that saw tentpole sequel openings beating their previous chapters, we’ve transitioned to a period where sequelitis takes a turn on the grosses, much like what we saw among franchise films in the ’90s and the early ’00s. While there’s always the notion that rival distribution chiefs like to spit at their competitor’s films, that’s hardly so here: Many believe MJ2 possesses a fantastic opening B.O. that shouldn’t be discounted. We saw depreciating ticket sales with each Hobbit sequel, and if you stack Katniss next to any of those titles, she’s got that boy franchise licked in every single one of her opening frames.
MJ2 fell on Saturday with $33.7M, which is typical of Katniss after a big Friday since all her girl fans come out on opening day. That’s a 27% decline from Friday’s $46.2M, which is a tad steeper than the -25% posted by the previous Hunger Games movies.
While Katniss was selling out back-t0-back Saturday night shows at such multiplexes as Edwards Cinema in Valencia, CA with plenty of walk-up business (see photo at right), winter actually arrived in the upper Midwest, with snow blanketing South Dakota to Michigan. Sixteen inches of snow were dumped on Chicago and its suburbs, marking the heaviest November downfall in the metro area in 100 years. But as long as the subways and trains are running, moviegoing doesn’t get crimped. So far this morning with estimates being where they are, no one is griping about the snow.
MJ2 made $8.5M at 384 Imax hubs. Katniss will have a three week run with the large exhib before Warner Bros.’ In The Heart of the Sea surfaces.
Sony/MGM/Eon’s Spectre saw a 52% gain over Friday with a Saturday take of $6.58M on its way to a third FSS of $14.6M, down 57% in second place and a running cume of $153.7M. It’s an apples-to-oranges comparison to bring up Skyfall‘s third weekend as that slipped 14% due to that year’s Thanksgiving holiday.
In third place, 20th Century Fox’s Blue Sky Animated film The Peanuts Movie rolled in $6.1M on Saturday, +109% for a third weekend of $12.8M and a running cume of $98.8M. At an 8PM packed screening Saturday that Deadline attended, adults were out in full force with a very small percentage of kids under 12 in the audience. While kids typically pull their moms into the theaters for family fare, Peanuts has a significant nostalgic value for adults. Hence, they’re the ones pulling their kids into theaters this time.
Sony’s Seth Rogen party hardy holiday comedy The Night Before saw an 8% rise in its Saturday cash registers with $3.9M. If the film only eases -35% on Sunday, then it will hit a $10M opening. Sony sees it at $10.1M this morning. Given the great word of mouth on this $25M-budgeted film, it will be interesting to see how much business picks up during the Thanksgiving to Christmas stretch. Given the fact that moviegoers are stoked, it’s a sign they’ll find this film for years to come, meaning home entertainment and TV should certainly make up for any theatrical shortfall. The film’s A- CinemaScore outstrips the grades of previous Rogen comedies, like Knocked Up (B+), Pineapple Express (B+), Neighbors (B), This Is The End (B+) and The Green Hornet (B+).
Sony moved the film up out of the Thanksgiving corridor to get a leg up on grosses and multiples. They always knew Katniss would lure a chunk of guys away, but with a holiday film like this, you gotta go sometime. In regards to why this is a lower Rogen opening than his summer films, one Sony insider pegged it to the movie’s holiday theme, and the fact that summer time is prime time for Rogen. Another rival distribution chief made the catty remark, “I think Seth’s humor is growing long in the tooth.”
On social media, per RelishMix, The Night Before universe stands at 143.4M, with 82.7M Facebook fans, 44.9M Twitter followers and 16M YouTube views. Rogen at 9.3M and Joseph Gordon-Levitt at 9.5M are the film’s heaviest social entertainers. The guys, including co-star Anthony Mackie, had a number of their PR tour stops go viral including: Lip Sync Battle, Bravo’s Vanderpump Rules, an ESPN cross-promo with Wayne Gretzky and a stop at Yahoo Movies.
Fifth belongs to STX/IM Global’s The Secret in Their Eyes. Although the film saw a slight uptick of 17% on Saturday with $2.6M, it’s going to file in at $6.6M-$6.7M. IM Global financed the film for $19.5M and sold off foreign for more than that figure. Mitigating risk on this film, STX and Route 1 took domestic in a co-deal for an estimated $6.5M, which I hear isn’t a 50/50 split. The film was originally moved from October to November in an effort to capitalize on the holiday multiple, and that’s what STX is banking on currently coupled with the film’s twist ending.
The top 10 films at the domestic box office per studio-reported figures as compiled by Deadline’s Amanda N’Duka:
1). The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 (LGF), 4,175 theaters / $46M Fri.* / $33.8M Sat. (-27%)/ $21.3M Sun (-37%) / 3-day cume: $101M /Wk 1
*includes $16M in previews. Industry calculation: $102.4M
2). Spectre (SONY), 3,659 theaters (-270)/ $4.3M Fri. /$6.6M Sat. (+53%)/ $3.7M Sun (-43%) / 3-day cume: $14.6M (-57%)/ Total cume: $153.7M /Wk 3
3). The Peanuts Movie (FOX), 3,671 theaters (-231)/ $2.9M Fri. / $6.1M Sat. (+109%)/ $3.8M Sun (-38%) / 3-day cume: $12.8M (-47%)/Total cume: $98.9M /Wk 3
4). The Night Before (SONY), 2,960, theaters / $3.6M Fri. **/$3.9M Sat. (+7%)/ $2.6M Sun (-31%) / 3-day cume: $10.1M /Wk 1
**includes $550K in Thursday previews. Industry calculation: $9.8M
5). Secret In Their Eyes (STX), 2,392, theaters / $2.3M Fri.+ /$2.6M Sat. (+13%)/ $1.7M Sun (-35%) / 3-day cume: $6.6M /Wk 1
+includes $170K in Thursday previews.
6). Love The Coopers (LGF), 2,603 theaters (0)/ $1.2M Fri. / $1.8M Sat. (+50%)/ $950K Sun (-47%) / 3-day cume: $3.9M (-53%) /Total cume: $15.1M /Wk 2
7). The Martian (FOX), 2,086 theaters (-702) / $1M Fri. / $1.7M Sat. (+71%)/ $945K Sun (-46%) / 3-day cume: $3.7M (-45%)/ Total cume: $213M / Wk 8
8). Spotlight (OPRD), 598 theaters (+538) / $1M Fri. / $1.5M Sat. (+47%)/ $1.1M Sun (-28%) / 3-day cume: $3.6 (+167%) / Total cume: $5.9M /Wk 3
9). The 33 (WB), 2,452 theaters (0)/ $695K Fri. / $935K Sat. (+35%)/ $610K Sun (-35%) / 3-day cume: $2.2M (-61%) /Total cume: $9.9M /Wk 2
10). Bridge Of Spies (DIS), 1,532 theaters (-1,156) / $563K Fri. /$905K Sat. (+61%)/ $477K Sun (-47%) /3-day cume: $1.9M (-58%)/Total cume: $65.2M /Wk 6
Prem Ratan Dhan Payo (FIP), 283 theaters (-4)/ $163K Fri. / $271K Sat. (+66%)/ $206K Sun (-24%) / 3-day cume: $640K (-74%) / Total cume: $4M /Wk 2
My All American (AVI), 1,314 theaters (-251)/ $124K Fri. /$149K Sat. (+20%)/ $97K Sun (-35%) / 3-day cume: $370K (-73%) / Total cume: $2.2M /Wk 2
Carol (TWC), 4 theaters / $79K Fri. / $96K Sat. (+21%)/ $68K Sun (-29%) /3-day cume: $243K /Per screen: $61K /Wk 1
Our Times (ASIA), 31 theaters / $67K Fri. / $88K Sat. (+31%)/ $61K Sun (-30%) / 3-day cume: $216K /Wk 1
By The Sea (UNI), 126 theaters (+116)/ $59K Fri. (+44%) / $77K Sat. (+31%)/ $49K Sun (-36%) / 3-day cume: $185K (+92%) /Total Cume: 313K /Wk 2
Legend (UNI), 4 theaters / $29K Fri. / $31K Sat. (+8%)/ $23K Sun (-26%) /3-day cume: $83K / Per screen: $21K /Wk 1
Journey Through Time With Anthony (CHINA), 17 theaters / $23K Fri. / $21K Sat. (-7%)/ $13K Sun (-40%) / 3-day cume: $57K /Wk 1
Mustang (CMG), 3 theaters / $5K Fri. / $9K Sat. (+71%)/ $7K Sun (-25%) / 3-day cume: $21K /Wk 1
3RD/4TH/5TH UPDATES, Fri. 8:53PM/Sat. 12:06AM & 8AM: Refresh for updates Lionsgate’s The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 is falling below its weekend projections with a $46.2m opening day and a projected $104M weekend per industry estimates this morning. The distributor is projecting a $251M global opening, hitting No. 1 in 84 out of 89 markets with $61M abroad through Friday.
Before anyone screams sequelitis and depreciating ticket sales, it’s possible that the fourth film, which carries an estimated combined budget and P&A cost of $215M stateside, could profit off of theatrical just like MJ1, before Lionsgate counts TV and home entertainment dollars and costs. I understand that foreign pre-sales on MJ2 are a little higher than MJ1‘s $130M, and that number combined with a similar rental to MJ1‘s $162M would get MJ2 into the black during its theatrical release with a profit that’s at $85M. Like MJ1, MJ2 on Friday night earned an A- CinemaScore. That grade generated a 2.8 multiple off MJ1’s $121.9M opening for a final $337M domestic B.O. Lionsgate was able to keep MJ1 in 2,500-plus theaters through Christmas and New Year’s, and the anticipation is that Katniss will be one of the few November releases hanging in there when Star Wars: The Force Awakens opens.
MJ1 carried a combined $190M production budget and P&A spend. When factored against the film’s combined rental and foreign presales, MJ1 turned a $102M profit before TV/home entertainment revenues and costs which raised its profit north of $211M. The final film directed by Francis Lawrence earned a 70% Rotten Tomatoes score, which is a little higher than MJ1’s 65% score. PLF screens were a big driver last night counting $4.4M. They’ll be at $10M for the weekend with Cinemark’s group of screens taking in close to $3M.
So why have grosses continued to slide from Catching Fire thru MJ2? While females have stayed strong at 60% over the last two titles, I’m told that the under/over 25 split on Catching Fire grew older with 61% over 25 turning up for MJ1. MJ2 has a 25+ draw in the mid-50 percentile. As the demos shift, not all the adults come out on opening weekend like the young females. They’ll head to the theater when it’s convenient or they’ll wait to watch it at home. 62% came out Friday night because they’re fans, while 28% showed up for Jennifer Lawrence, a figure that’s consistent with her pull on other Hunger Games films.
Social media monitor RelishMix reports that the social conversation reflects the obvious excitement over how the series concludes; how it might deviate from the books coupled with passionate call outs to the cast and plot points. Essentially a fans ‘can’t believe it’s over’ aura hovers around the current Hunger Games social sphere which towers at 909M with 189M Facebook reach, 18.5M on Twitter and 702M total YouTube views. Of that, MJ2 boasts additional Facebook reach of 51M in the last year, over 2M on Twitter and 261M YouTube views for owned and earned videos. RelishMix also notices from the social chatter there are plenty of sarcastic fans out there who are glad to see the series go, but are either too invested at this point to miss the last chapter, or are unwilling participants who have friends and girlfriends dragging them to the theater. MJ2 cast is 100% aboard posting banners, trailers and count downs on social to their 40M fans who are fully engaged. Jennifer Lawrence has over 14.1M fans alone on Facebook, Josh Hutcherson’s SMU is at 11M, Liam Hemsworth is at 9.3M, Elizabeth Banks at 4M, and Willow Shields at 1.8M.
Sony’s Spectre and 20th Century Fox’s The Peanuts Movie are holding off any newcomers, planting their feet in spots 2 and 3 respectively. Spectre is looking at a third weekend of $14.3M, off 58% for a cume by Sunday of $153.4M. Peanuts is set to collect $12.6M per industry estimates, down 45% in its third frame for a total cume of $98.6M. Matinees today, which some expect to jump 105% over Friday, would put it in the $100M-plus category.
Among newcomers, Sony’s Seth Rogen R-rated comedy The Night Before made $3.55M Friday with heading toward a $10M FSS. It earned an A- CinemaScore Friday night, and that coupled with some fairly decent reviews at 65% rotten, could turn this holiday comedy into a sleeper, possibly in the spirit of Bad Santa which opened to $12.3M and made 4.9X its opening for $60M final B.O. off a $23M budget. Night Before cost an estimated $25M. These types of films are perennials on TV and home entertainment for years to come. One analyst marveled how Rogen’s B.O. multiples can get up to the 3x-5x range in their final totals. Typically he brings in over 60% males, but Night Before drew some more females this time, with guys this time at 55%. Rogen’s sweet spot is the 18-24 crowd, and Night Before pulled in 44% of that demo. Under 25 repped 52%. Christmas-themed movies typically launch during the first or second weekend of November. The Night Before couldn’t go last weekend as it would have rubbed up against Love The Coopers (which is down 53% in its second FSS with $3.9M in No. 6 with $14.9M), even though they’re geared toward different crowds: Night Before for guys, Coopers for older women.
STX/IM Global’s The Secret In Their Eyes is looking at a $2.3M Friday and a $6.9M weekend per industry calculations, toward the lower end of its projections. No amount of star power, even the pairing of Nicole Kidman and Julia Roberts, will open moviegoers’ eyes to the Secret In Their Eyes. The film is stigmatized by a top critics score of 29% rotten (42% total) and a B- CinemaScore, meaning it’s going to get trounced in this bloodletting holiday adult market. Stephen Holden of the NY Times cried, “Sad to say: There is far more crackle in an average episode of Law & Order.” Older women repped the majority of those sitting in seats with 60% females: 40% over 50, 70% over 35. Over 60% bought tickets to The Secret in Their Eyes because it starred Roberts and Kidman. Statistically speaking, whenever the stars are the main reason for why an audience turns out, it typically means that the grosses are frontloaded on the first weekend. The remake of the 2009 Oscar foreign language film winner was made for $19.5M. IM sold off foreign, limiting its exposure, with Universal possessing a number of the key territories which are scheduled to open next year. From overseas presales, IM collected more than the estimated production cost. Unfortunately, the B.O. sting here will be felt by STX stateside after P&A spend.
Open Road’s Spotlight cracked the top 10 in its expansion from 61 to 598 venues in its third weekend. It made an estimated $1M on Friday and should take in a FSS of $3.4M in the No. 8 spot. That’s a $5,700 weekend PTA, which I’m told is solid. Had it posted a $7,500 PTA, it would be considered a notable crossover from arthouse to commercial theaters, but anything less than $5K wouldn’t be good for this newsroom drama.
On the specialty side, Weinstein Co.’s 1950s lesbian love story Carol, which earned Rooney Mara a best actress award at the Cannes Film Festival, is drawing lines around the block at arthouses. Per screen is a powerful $62K on course for a $246K weekend at four New York and Los Angeles locations. Carol‘s opening PTA is the third highest for 2015 after Steve Jobs’ $130K and Sicario‘s $67K.
Remember By The Sea, that movie starring Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt? Well, it’s in its second weekend with an increased theatrical run of 126. It made $59K on Friday, +55% from when it was playing in 10 theaters last Friday. Weekend should come in at $196K, +103% with an estimated cume of $323K. Not enough mojo here to keep this alive among specialty crowds.
Legend, Universal’s British gangster film about the Krays, made $29K on Friday on its way to $93K this weekend at four NYC and LA venues. That’s a $23K PTA and for it to be considered an arthouse knockout business wise, $35K-$50K is what it should be doing. It has a 54% Rotten Tomatoes score among top critics which is middling and likely keeping moviegoers at bay. A pity, because Tom Hardy simply escapes into both roles on screen. Legend cost $25M and has raked in $36M overseas from 26 markets with 78% of that figure coming from its U.K. release. Legend originally was slated to open on Oct. 2, however, Uni opted for a platform release beginning this weekend with expansions on Wednesday and Dec. 11.
The top 10 films and notables per industry estimates as of Saturday AM by Deadline’s Amanda N’Duka:
1). The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 (LGF), 4,175 theaters / $46.2M Fri.* / 3-day cume: $104M /Wk 1
*includes $16M in previews
2). Spectre (SONY), 3,659 theaters (-270)/ $4.3M Fri. (-57%) /3-day cume: $14.3M (-58%)/ Total cume: $153.4M /Wk 3
3). The Peanuts Movie (FOX), 3,671 theaters (-231)/ $2.9M Fri. (-48%)/3-day cume: $12.6M (-48%)/Total cume: $98.6M /Wk 3
4). The Night Before (SONY), 2,960, theaters / $3.55M Fri. **/ 3-day cume: $10M /Wk 1
*includes $550K in previews
5). Secret In Their Eyes (STX), 2,392, theaters / $2.3M Fri. +/ 3-day cume: $6.9M /Wk 1
+includes $170K in previews
6). Love The Coopers (LGF), 2,603 theaters (0)/ $1.17M Fri. (-58%) / 3-day cume: $3.9M (-53%) /Total cume: $14.9M /Wk 2
7). The Martian (FOX), 2,086 theaters (-702) / $1M Fri. (-47%)/ 3-day cume: $3.6M (-46%)/ Total cume: $212.9M / Wk 8
8). Spotlight (OPRD), 598 theaters (+538) / $1M Fri. (+161%)/3-day cume: $3.4M (+152%) / Total cume: $5.7M /Wk 3
9). The 33 (WB), 2,452 theaters (0)/ $686K Fri. (-63%) / 3-day cume: $2.3M (-60%) /Total cume: $9.9M /Wk 2
10). Bridge of Spies (DIS), 1,532 theaters (-1,156) / $555K Fri. (-56%)/3-day cume: $1.9M (-55%)/Total cume: $65.1M /Wk 6
Guerre Des Tuques 3D (eONE), 76 theaters (0) / $166K Fri. (-8%)/ 3-day cume: $540K (-20%)/Total cume: $1.6M /Wk 2
Prem Ratan Dhan Payo (FIP), 283 theaters (-4)/ $156K Fri. (-77%)/ 3-day cume: $552K (-77%) / Total cume: $3.9M /Wk 2
My All American (AVI), 1,314 theaters (-251)/ $124K Fri. (-75%)/ 3-day cume: $380K (-72%) / Total cume: $2.2M /Wk 2
Carol (TWC), 4 theaters / $77K Fri. / 3-day cume: $246K /Per screen: $62K /Wk 1
Our Times (ASIA), 31 theaters / $67K Fri. / 3-day cume: $209K / /Wk 1
By The Sea (UNI), 126 theaters (+116)/ $59K Fri. (+55%) / 3-day cume: $195K (+103%) /Total Cume: $323K /Wk 2
Legend (UNI), 4 theaters / $29K Fri. / 3-day cume: $93K / Per screen: $23K /Wk 1
Mustang (CMG), 3 theaters / $5K Fri. / 3-day cume: $16K / Per screen: $5,300K /Wk 1
2ND UPDATE, 12:30 PM: Midday estimates show Lionsgate’s The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 with an opening day between $47 million-$49 million at 4,175 theaters, on track for a weekend that’s between $104M-$110M. As typical with these early figures, they’re bound to improve by evening.
Even though the pic is on track to be the lowest opening for the franchise, there isn’t a distributor out there who would gripe about a triple-digit weekend. Many of those whom we’ve spoken with commend a mini-major like Lionsgate for clinging to this prized pre-Thanksgiving date for the franchise over the last three films; that this frame, over any other in the rest of the year, is prime for Katniss. Summit with the third Twilight Saga: Eclipse, played that film during July, going for a five-day record of $157.5M.
Should Lionsgate have emulated a similar release by putting Mockingjay in the summer? The answer is largely “no,” because then the film would have to deal with a competition from other franchise films and animated family pics. Some also believe there’s a slight slowdown at the box office that’s impacting all movies — seen recently in industry estimates pegging Spectre to an $80M debut, and it wound up posting $70.4M. And just because that opening was off from the 007 Skyfall record of $88.4M, doesn’t mean that the film tanked: It’s the second-highest-opening all time for the franchise.
Rentrak’s PostTrak reports that those shelling out for Mockingjay 2 are mostly young females at 63%, with 52% under 25. Note this demo is coming out in full force tonight, and as is the tendency that will ease on Saturday and more on Sunday. So, today will likely be MJ2‘s highest-grossing day. The biggest concentration of moviegoers are between the ages of 18-24 at 37%. Currently, there’s a massive 71% recommend for the film, with 34% saying they went because they are fans of the franchise.
Sony/MGM/Eon’s Spectre, which currently counts $139.1M through two weeks, will see a third frame that’s down 50% for $16.8M and a running cume by Sunday of $155.9M. Some even think it could dip 45%, which is fantastic in the face of a big girl like Katniss.
In third, 20th Century Fox’s The Peanuts Movie is looking at $13M-$14M in its third session. It could come close to crossing $100M by Sunday.
Sony’s R-rated comedy The Night Before is currently eyeing an opening today that’s between $4.5M-$5.5M, with a FSS between $12M-$14M. STX/IM Global’s Secret In Their Eyes is looking at $2M-$3M today for a $6M-$8M take, which is in the range of what the distributor was expecting.
PREVIOUS, 7:52 AM: Lionsgate’s The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 started its box office chorus last night firing up $16 million in previews, a number that’s $1M shy of last year’s Thursday preview of Mockingjay – Part 1 which made $17M. Among the franchise’s Thursday pre-openings, Catching Fire is the best with $25.25M from shows starting at 8 PM. Current global B.O. for the last installment is at $43M.
The Francis Lawrence-helmed film, his third out of four in the series, is currently No. 1 in 66 of 68 markets with 19 more territories debuting today. Mockingjay – Part 2 moves to 4,175 stateside venues today and 33,000 worldwide.
Last year, Mockingjay – Part 1 generated an opening day of $55.1M before posting an opening of $121.9M, and many predict that the final hurrah will fly just under those numbers with an opening weekend of $115M-$120M stateside. Unlike last year, Mockingjay – Part 2 has some help from Imax theaters. The current estimated production cost for Mockingjay – Part 2 is $160M, which is 14% higher than the last chapter and 23% higher than Catching Fire. Not counting foreign theatrical and home entertainment which is pre-sold, Lionsgate made $211.6M profit off of Mockingjay – Part 1 as reported by Deadline.
Lionsgate originally debuted the feature adaptation of Suzanne Collins’ YA novel in March 2012 where it opened to $152.5M in the U.S. and Canada, but then moved it to November with 2013’s Catching Fire. In that new pre-Thanksgiving slot, the franchise hit all of its B.O. records with best domestic opening day ($70.95M), weekend ($158.1M), domestic cume ($424.7M) and global haul ($865M).
Mockingjay – Part 2 flapped her wings so loudly, she took all the wind out of the other two openers’ sails on Thursday night. Sony’s holiday comedy The Night Before starring Seth Rogen, Anthony Mackie and Joseph Gordon-Levitt settled for a low $550K at 2,410 locations from shows starting at 7 PM. STX/IM Global’s remake of Argentinian Foreign Language Oscar winner Secret iTn Their Eyes only drew $170K at 1,470; it expands to 2,392 today.
The Night Before carries an estimated production cost of $25M, while Secret In Their Eyes is $19.5M, the latter fully backed by IM Global. Night Before is expected to bring in $8M-$10M, while Secret In Their Eyes is hoping for $7M-$9M.
Similar to last night’s preview figures, tracking as of yesterday showed Mockingjay – Part 2 hogging up the first-choice column across four quads, and also towering over Night Before and Secret In Their Eyes which posted first choice figures in the single digits. First choice for the latest chapter of Hunger Games is highest among the under 25 set in women (46%) and men (43%), followed by the over 25 set with women (34%) and men (33%).
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