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The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 posts highest US debut of 2014 so far

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1

Story by Jack Foley

THE Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 has secured the top opening for a film in the US this year but failed to best either of its two predecessors in terms of opening figures.

Mockingjay grossed $123 million, easily surpassing the $100 million debut of Transformers: Age of Extinction.

However, it trailed in the wake of both the original Hunger Games movie ($152.5 million) and its sequel, Catching Fire ($158.1 million).

If that seems disappointing, then it’s worth noting that the figure stil represents the 15th highest opening of all time, not accounting for inflation.

And it also went great guns internationally, where it did actually outperform the first two films by grossing $152 million – 4% ahead of Catching Fire. Mockingjay‘s world-wide total therefore comes in at $275 million, one of the best showings of the year.

Part of the reason for the decline in takings could be down to distributor Lionsgate’s decision to split Suzanne Collins’ final book into two films, much like the final Harry Potter films.

There is less action in Part 1, with the grand finale still to come.

However, director Frances Lawrence did shoot the movies back-to-back in a bid to maintain the film’s momentum at a reported cost of $250 million and there remain high hopes for a grand finish when Mockingjay Part 2 opens on November 20, 2015.

Elsewhere in the US top five, Disney’s animated family film Big Hero 6 came in second in its third weekend with an estimated $20.1 million for a US total $135.7 million, while Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar took in $15 million in its third weekend to top $120 million in the US.

Dumb and Dumber To fell more heavily in its second weekend, sliding from top to fourth with $13.8 million for a US total of $57.5 million, while in its eighth week of release David Fincher’s Gone Girl rounded out the top five with a figure that brought its US total to an impressive $156 million.

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