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Hunger Games: Catching Fire contributes to massive Lionsgate profit

Studio's profit soars on the back of second Hunger Games movie

COMMENT | In what has been a bumper year for the 'Hunger Games' franchise, the success of the second 'Hunger Games' movie, 'Hunger Games: Catching Fire', has made a huge contribution to a successful year for Lionsgate. The distributor of the 'Hunger Games' movies recently released its fiscal earnings for the quarter in which 'Hunger Games: Catching Fire' was released, and based on the results they will be putting even more faith and investment into the remaining 'Mockingjay' movies in the coming two years.

Lions Gate Entertainment Corp's earnings surged thanks almost entirely to the success of 'Hunger Games: Catching Fire'. For the period beginning in October and ending at the culmination of 2013, Lionsgate reported a profit of $88.8 million, which was nearly a three-fold increase on the same period last year. Their overall revenue also increased by 13 percent to $839.9 million, and the excellent results contributed to the share price of the company increasing by 5 percent on trading.

The second 'Hunger Games' film has been one of the massive hits of 2013, and significantly exceeded both the performance of the first 'Hunger Games' movie, as well as the expectations of the studio. This was despite the fact that the production was initially dogged with some pretty major issues. Firstly, Gary Ross, director of the first film, dropped out of the project (or was kicked out, depending on whom you believe). And then 'Catching Fire' went quite considerably over budget.

Lionsgate must have wondered at this stage whether they would have the sort of success on their hands that they were hoping for, given that a vast multitude of sequels have flopped over the years. Thankfully for them, and all 'Hunger Games' fans, the second 'Hunger Games' movie was arguably an improvement on the first film, and thus the cinematic completion of the 'Hunger Games' series has been secured. That might sound melodramatic, after all the books were so successful and so much money and promotion went into the movies they seemed certain to succeed, but this was far from certain, and if 'Catching Fire' had completely bombed it's quite possible that 'Mockingjay' would never have seen the light of day.

As it is 'Catching Fire' took 25 percent more than the first movie, and the future of 'Mockingjay' was locked in place. We can now all look forward to the third 'Hunger Games' movie being released in November this year.

Christopher Morris watches too many sci-fi films, has a fanatical interest in Philip K. Dick's work, and is a regular contributor to Yahoo on television, cinema, video games, technology and politics.

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