Jennifer Lawrence returns to theaters in a few weeks in highly-anticipated sequel "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire."
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the second installment of "the girl on fire" cost Lionsgate an estimated $130 million, a big bump from the $78 million of the first film.
Here's the breakdown of why the budget is higher via THR:
- $10 million+ on added visual effects
- ~$10 million+: Jennifer Lawrence's paycheck (she was paid $500,000 + bonuses for the first film)
- $30 million: the combination of filming in more locations / more scenes than the first film. Production was also five days longer for the sequel.
If that sounds like a lot of money to dole out for the film adaptation, it's not. The sequel should more than make up for its costs.
1. "Catching Fire" should have one of the largest box-office openings of the year — if not of all time.The first film not only set March box-office records with an opening of $155 million, but it also easily became Lionsgate's highest-grossing movie to date with $691.2 million worldwide.
As of right now, "Catching Fire" is expected to make $185 million opening weekend.
That number would easily give the film the highest-opening weekend of the year — edging out "Iron Man 3" ($174 million) from this summer — and the second-largest opening at the box office ever behind "The Avengers" ($207.4 million).
2. Jennifer Lawrence's big pay raise shouldn't come as a shock.
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The young actress is a hot commodity in Hollywood after her Best Actress Oscar win for last year's "Silver Linings Playbook."
3. It's not a surprise to see a spike in production costs for a sequel — especially a successful one.
Take a look at some of the highest-grossing franchises and the jump in cost from the initial film to its sequel.
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Most notable are the gaps in both "The Matrix" and "Pirates" franchise budgets.
When it comes down to it, it's really not that big of a surprise that Lionsgate and Summit Entertainment would gamble $52 million more on the girl on fire. Katniss Everdeen already looks like a solid win at the box office.
"Hunger Games: Catching Fire" is in theaters November 22.
Check out the latest trailer for the film below: