EXCLUSIVE: AMC Theaters pulled out all the stops to cash in on the huge audience interest in Marvel’s The Avengers, and the exhibition chain says today that the effort paid off. “We grossed almost $4M last night, slightly ahead of the amazing Hunger Games opening a little more than a month ago,” says AMC President of Programming Bob Lenihan. The company says 112 theaters devoted 194 screens to the chain’s Ultimate Marvel Marathon, and 47 of the screens were sold out — far exceeding AMC’s expectations. More than 30,000 ticket-buyers paid $40 apiece to spend 16 hours beginning 11:30 AM yesterday watching Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man 2, Thor in 3D, Captain America in 3D, and The Avengers in 3D. In addition, the exhibition chain says that it had nearly 600 sold-out shows for the new release. The flagship AMC Empire 25 in Times Square was sold out for last night’s midnight showing — as were the venue’s 3:00 AM IMAX show, and a 6:45 AM show. The theater “should be our busiest location in the country,” says AMC’s EVP for Operations, John McDonald. AMC also reports sell-outs for Seattle’s AMC Lakewood 12, Anaheim’s AMC Downtown Disney 12, and New Jersey’s AMC Menlo Park 12.