Hunger Games On Pace for Record Box Office Weekend

The war between Twilight and Harry Potter is over. The war between Harry Potter and The Hunger Games has begun.

For years the debate raged as to whether Twilight or Harry Potter was the better franchise, despite the unequivocal facts indicating that the latter was the better franchise. Critically praised, based on critically acclaimed books and thematically more powerful, Harry Potter also earned significantly more money than the Twilight saga, which was ravaged by those outside the preteen female demographic.

It really was no contest.

The Hunger Games appears to be a different beast.  The movie earned $68.25 million on Friday, including midnight showings, and is on pace for $140 million if not much more at the domestic box office this weekend, obliterating the previous March opening weekend record of $116 million, held by the God-awful Tim Burton monstrosity Alice in Wonderland.

According to, The Hunger Games opening would rank fifth on the all-time openings list, and is the best non-sequel opening of all time.

Just as importantly, the movie has a very strong 87% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a 95% approval rating from users on Flixster.

Twilight was never really in the same league as Harry Potter. The soon-to-be-done vampire tale has been a financial behemoth, but other than that the two franchises were both based on “young adult” books, their similarities were minimal. The Hunger Games, on the other hand, is a different animal. More complex, action-packed and carrying an even bigger box office bat, the movie can and will appeal to broader audiences, which, in time, while make for a much better debate.

There’s no question that The Hunger Games is the next Harry Potter. Only time will tell which franchise is the better of the two.

By Erik Samdahl
Related categories: Action Movies, Adventure Movies, Box Office, Science Fiction Movies