'Games' Explodes, But Not Everywhere

It was a perfect storm," says Lionsgate marketing chief Tim Palen of the staggering $152.5 million domestic opening weekend for The Hunger Games, which out-performed the first Twilight and Harry Potter pics. The adaptation of the Suzanne Collins novel nabbed the third-best opening of all time domestically behind the final Harry Potter movie ($169.2 million) and The Dark Knight ($158.4 million). But while Games could gross $350 million to $400 million in North America, the pic's international prospects aren't as strong -- unusual considering that these days, most American tentpole movies do far more business overseas than at home. Games opened in 67 territories, grossing $59.3 million (by comparison, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 opened overseas to $307 million). It fared best in English-speaking territories such as the U.K. and Australia, suggesting that Collins' trilogy isn't yet known in every corner of the globe. But readers worldwide should have time to discover the books before Catching Fire opens in November 2013.