May the odds be ever in Lionsgate’s favor as Jennifer Lawrence takes her last bow as Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 which should open to huge numbers this weekend. The Hunger Games series has been a huge hit for Lionsgate, and this film follows the trend that began with the Harry Potter series of breaking the final book of popular young adult series up into two parts to takeget as much box office buck as possible before they run out of sequels to adapt. I’m sure the studios would split all big books up into multiple parts if they could. Who would have thought The Hobbit would have been stretched out into three movies. Expect Mockingjay – Part 2 to dominate the weekend.
The other two wide releases aim to capture audiences who probably have little-to-no interest in The Hunger Games. Entering the arena with Lionsgate is Sony Pictures with the hard R holiday comedy The Night Before starring Seth Rogen, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Anthony Mackie, along with Secret in Their Eyes starring Nicole Kidman, Julia Roberts and Chiwetel Ejifor from STX Entertainment. The Night Before should get a healthy response from a younger male demographic while Secret in Their Eyes aims for a more mature crowd, an audience that is under-served at the box office lately.
007 is still around for a third week, having vanquished all newcomers last weekend and should still pull in respectable numbers as should The Peanuts Movie from Fox.
Among the specialty releases this weekend are The Weinstein Company’s Carol starring Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara and directed by Todd Haynes, Legend starring Tom Hardy and directed by Brian Helgeland as well as #Horror and Mediterranea, both from IFC.
The full list of releases follows.
In Wide release:
THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – PART 2 (Lionsgate)
THE NIGHT BEFORE (Sony / Columbia)
SECRET IN THEIR EYES (STX Entertainment)
In Limited Release:
CAROL (The Weinstein Company)
THE SUMMER OF SANGAILE (Strand)
Poster Art Not Available: ON WAR (Indican)