— This is the script of CNBC's news report for China's CCTV on November 19, Wednesday.
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay-Part 1 is off to a massive start- the most advance ticket sales of any film this year, and more than double the social media fan interest than any other film this holiday season. Lionsgate is tapping into that fan base to build buzz, with a branded video series about the film, starring seven YouTube stars, to reach millions of subscribers. The film is on track to match the last installment's $158M opening, which would make it year's biggest debut by far.
Lionsgate needs its biggest franchise to deliver on the heels of Alibaba deal talks-and not just because there's another movie due next year. Next summer a Hunger Games theme park attraction will launch, a Hunger Games play is debuting in 2016, and it's the crown jewel of a direct to subscription movie service Lionsgate and Tribeca Enterprises are introducing the first half of next year.
CNBC's Julia Boorstin tells you what to expect.
The odds are ever in Lionsgate's favor the hunger games latest installment of the series Mockingjay premiered hitting theatres Friday. I went to the LA premier on Monday night and based on 100s of fans that came to see Jen Lawrence and other cast members no question the film has huge fan base. Mockingjay has more than double the social media fan interest of any other film this holiday season. Lionsgate is tapping into that starting a YouTube series starring 7 YouTube stars with millions of subscribers, its fan dangles top advances ticket seller of the year. It could match the last Hunger games' 158 mil dollar opening weekend making it the year's biggest opening weekend by far. The challenge IMAX is not showing the film so the studio box office won't benefit from those higher ticket prices. Lionsgate needs its biggest franchise to deliver not just because it cost a reported 250 mil dollars to produce this year, it's the crown jewel of the subscription movie service it has with Tribeca enterprises. There's also a touring exhibition of hunger games costumes and props for next fall, a theme park and a play debuting in 2016. Though the box office could certainly swing Lionsgate's stock, analysts are noting the strong performance for Mockingjay is already baked into it. Back to you.
Shares of Lions Gate Entertainment surged from October's low of $29.23 per share to $34.59 yesterday. We will see how the first weekend's box office will swing Lionsgate's stock. I'm Qian Chen, CNBC.