Box Office Report: 'Titanic 3D' Opens Neck and Neck With 'Hunger Games'

On the Set: "Titanic"
Courtesy of Everett Collection

Director James Cameron (at right) on the "Titanic" set with stars Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio. Both actors were untested lead actors, and the studio questioned whether they could carry such a large-scale story.

UPDATED: The rerelease could gross a strong $4.5 million to $6 million at the Wednesday box office, putting it in a close contest with "The Hunger Games."

Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet's Titanic is back in action.

The 3D release of John Cameron's 1997 blockbuster got off to an impressive start at the domestic box office Wednesday and is projected to gross $4.5 million to $6 million for the day. That would be good enough for a possible five-day opening of $27 million to $30 million.

Titanic could even beat The Hunger Games on Wednesday; they were running neck and neck in the late afternoon, though traffic for Titanic slowed by the evening, giving Hunger Games the edge.

Paramount and Fox are partners on Titanic; Paramount is handling domestic duties, and Fox has international, where the rerelease began rolling out Wednesday in virtually all corners of the globe. In the U.S., it is playing in 2,600 theaters, including 79 Imax locations.

Internationally, presales have been particularly strong in China.

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Bullish box-office observers believe Titanic could gross $27 million to $30 million for the Wednesday-Friday stretch, though Paramount is estimating $20 million to $25 million.

The original Titanic, which opened in December 1997, grossed $1.8 billion at the worldwide box office and the was the top-grossing of all time for more than a decade, until Cameron's Avatar came along.

Cameron's 3D conversion of Titanic cost $18 million.

It's too early to say which film will win the Easter weekend contest; on Friday, Universal's American Reunion enters the fray.