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Whisper Numbers: The Hunger Games: Catching Fire burns bright

The all time biggest blockbusters is about to initiate a new member in the top five as the highly anticipated The Hunger Games: Catching Fire [HGAM2] arrives this weekend. The question is how high will the sequel rank? The Hunger Games exceeded all expectations when it debuted at $152 million, the best ever for an original film and the third biggest overall at the time of March 2012. Catching Fire will have no problem topping the current November record of $142.8 million held by The Twilight Saga: New Moon. The Avengers’ $207.4 million at number one is probably out of reach, but Iron Man 3’s second-best $174.1 million is within play. Lionsgate nearly doubled the budget on the sci-fi sequel in which the dual winners of Katniss and Peeta, played by Jennifer Lawrence [JLAWR] and Josh Hutcherson [JHUTC], must go up against previous winners in an all-star edition of the dystopian battle royale. Directed by Francis Lawrence [FLAWR] who succeeded Gary Ross, the PG-13 rated sequel has earned even better reviews than the first film. The enormous fanbase of all demographics will turn out in force beginning Thursday night at 8pm, but the lack of 3D ticket prices may keep Katniss from catching Tony Stark. Booked into 4163 theaters, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire could stoke flames upwards of $171 million.

Thor: The Dark World [THOR2] is decaying quickly much like its fellow Avenger, Iron Man 3 this summer.  Thor: The Dark World will battle for second place with about $16.5 million.

The Best Man Holiday [BESM2] spread a lot of cheers at the box office in its debut. The comedy sequel is likely to cool off 45% to around $16 million in its second weekend.

Is Vince Vaughn [VVAUG] still be the Delivery Man [DLVRY] at the box office? Moviegoers are tiring of his schtick as The Internship opened to just $17 million this summer. The comedian tries to show a more sensitive side by playing a man who slowly become a father figure to his 533 offspring in the Disney remake of a French-Canadian film. The PG-13 rated dramedy will likely appeal only to older women, many of whom unfortunately will also be interested in Katniss. Showing in 3036 theaters, Delivery Man may foster $12 million.

After grossing $3 million in 2 weeks of limited release, Dallas Buyers Club [DALBC] expands wide into 666 theaters. Matthew McConaughey [MMCCO] and Jared Leto [JLETO] have garnered rave reviews and Oscar buzz for their performances in the R-rated drama based on a true story about the early years of the AIDS crisis. Dallas Buyers Club may collect $3 million for Focus Features.

That’s the whisper from the virtual trading floor.


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By Box Office Whisperer on Thursday, November 21, 2013 @ 03:25 PM 2876 views

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Weekend #BoxOffice Actuals: 1. #ShangChi $13.0M 2. #DearEvenHansen $7.4M https://t.co/hwulHb1qdg       Adrienne Warren joins The Woman King       Kim Cattrall joins About My Father        First trailer for #LicoricePizza from Paul Thomas Anderson https://t.co/yTNP9NhIVI       Roadside Attractions to distribute #Lakewood starring Naomi Watts https://t.co/YtMwFttqV4       First Look at Netflix's Operation Mincemeat starring Colin Firth https://t.co/iO7BO1Io7m       Box Score: #ShangChi wins for a fourth weekend as #DearEvanHansen underperforms at the #boxoffice…       #DearEvanHansen took in $3.27M at the #BoxOffice on Friday       Pilou Asbaek joins Salem's Lot as Richard Straker       Jani Zhao, Indya Moore and Vincent Regan join #Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom       
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