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'Hunger Games' 3rd-best debut ever with $155M

Jennifer Lawrence appears in a scene from the 2012 film 'The Hunger Games.' (Lionsgate)

March 25, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
Movie buffs were hungry for "The Hunger Games" this weekend. They helped it open to the third-best debut ever.

"The Hunger Games" opened this weekend with $155 million, only behind last year's "Harry Potter" finale and "The Dark Knight" in 2008 - both were established franchises. "The Hunger Games" set a revenue record for a non-sequel, taking in more than twice what the first "Twilight" movie did with its $69.6 million opening weekend.

Fans camped out for the first screenings for "The Hunger Games," which began just after midnight Friday. Many of them dressed up as their favorite characters from the story.

The action-comedy "21 Jump Street" was in second place with just over $21 million. No. 3 was "Dr. Seuss' the Lorax" with $13 million.

The top 10 films of the weekend were:

1. "The Hunger Games," $155 million ($59.3 million international).
2. "21 Jump Street," $21.3 million ($5.3 million international).
3. "Dr. Seuss' the Lorax," $13.1 million ($5.5 million international).
4. "John Carter," $5 million ($22.2 million international).
5. "Act of Valor," $2.1 million.

6. "Project X," $2 million ($4.4 million international).
7. "A Thousand Words," $1.9 million.
8. "October Baby," $1.7 million.
9. "Safe House," $1.39 million ($2.3 million international).
10. "Journey 2: The Mysterious Island," $1.37 million.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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