"The Hunger Games" is set to break box office records after many critics gave stellar reviews to the sci-fi fantasy flick set in the future.
"The Hunger Games" is centered around Katniss Everdeen, played by Jennifer Lawrence. In the movie, the girl volunteers to be a "Tribute" in the place of her sister, meaning she will participate in the titular life-and-death contest sponsored by an evil upper class. Everdeen is "forced to rely upon her sharp instincts … [and] drunken former victor Haymitch Abernathy" played by Woody Harrelson, according to Lionsgate.
"The Hunger Games" is being compared to huge openings like that of "The Dark Knight" and "Twilight" after critics saw it, because many thought the film appealed to more than the teenage demographic- the "all-audience" movie could gross a substantial amount, according to a film executive.
"They are hitting it out of the park when it comes to all audience segments," an unnamed movie executive told The Hollywood Reporter. "No matter how you slice and dice it, this is an all-audience, four-quadrant movie."
Conservative estimates of the widely-anticipated film's opening start at $85 million, while some believe "The Hunger Games" could gross anywhere from $130 to $140 million, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
In comparison, "Twilight" had an opening weekend of $69.6 million.
After the movie's premiere, many critics gave positive reviews, heightening the interest for the release, which happens March 23.
"This Hunger Games is a muscular, honorable, unflinching translation of Collins' (the author) vision. It's brutal where it needs to be, particularly when children fight and bleed," wrote Lisa Schwarzbaum of Entertainment Weekly.
"An often riveting, occasionally underwhelming chronicle of a competition forcing teenagers to kill each other," wrote Matt Pais of RedEye.
So far, Fandango has reported over 1,200 sold out shows for "The Hunger Games," with interest rising in various demographics. The movie could certainly break the current record- $116 million by "Alice in Wonderland"- for a March release.