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Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

First Time Lionsgate Has Two Films Make Over $125 Million In The Same Year They Do It With Female Leads


There’s been a lot of talk about how Hollywood doesn’t believe female-led films will make money at the box office and that’s why so few are made. This year not only proved them wrong, it proved them wrong in a big way. Indie studio Lionsgate has done something they’ve never done before – in 2012, they had two films both make over $125 million in North American theaters. The films? The Hunger Games and Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2

On January 13, 2012 Lionsgate acquired the house that Twilight built, Summit Entertainment. While Summit still exists as a subsidiary, it’s accomplishments now go to Lionsgate. Since it’s release, Breaking Dawn has made $141.3 million domestically while The Hunger Games took in $152.5 million on its opening weekend.

Let’s think about this for a second. Both films starred female leads and both films played for what was projected to be a mostly female audience. That’s pretty huge and a good indicator going forward for not just Lionsgate but other studios. Women action stars besides Angelina Jolie can make money, and both men and women will want to see them.

Breaking Dawn’s numbers also pushed the indie studio past the $1 billion mark at the domestic box office in a single calendar year for the first time. This year’s The Cabin in the Woods and The Expendables 2 also helped with that particular number.

“Every member of our motion picture group should take tremendous pride in this singular accomplishment,” said Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer and vice chairman Michael Burns in a joint statement.

(via Yahoo)

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  • Anonymous

    I find strong female characters very appealing and yet I have no desire to see either of these

  • Anonymous

    I was kind of happy with the headline, then I saw the which movies were talked about, then got pretty upset :/

  • DarthKate8215

    Ooh this headline looks interesting… oop, nope, nevermind…

  • http://twitter.com/KatiePunkin Kate Holloway

    Then it’s a good thing this article wasn’t about you.

  • Anonymous

    Does Kristen Stewart really count as a “lead” when you can put a cardboard cutout in her place and get the same results?

  • Anonymous

    Yes, but do they pass the Bechdel test?

  • Anonymous

    That these movies do not interest me personally negates the historical and market significance of this achievement. In the future, please only post stories that reflect my specific and somewhat inconsistant priorities. Sincerely, The Internet

  • http://twitter.com/TiredFairy Mariah Huehner

    That’s pretty much exactly what I was thinking. Also: my personal feelings on Kristen Stewart are always relevant to every discussion. Because reasons.

  • Anonymous

    Unless I’m reading a very different article it is about mass market appeal, that makes it about everyone.

  • Life Lessons

    Put that in your wallet and THINK! :)

  • http://twitter.com/KatiePunkin Kate Holloway

    I refer you to RaeBeta’s comment above.

  • Anonymous

    Just a bookkeeping comment – how is Lionsgate being considered the only studio to have done this? Just looking down the domestic list at BoxOfficeMojo for 2012, and Disney, Universal, Sony & Fox all had more than 1 movie make upwards of 125 million; Sony had 5 and Universal had 4. Or is it meaning over 125 million in a single weekend?

  • http://twitter.com/Super_Widget Joanna

    Lads, seriously, it doesn’t matter that Twilight is shit. The point is that there is a market for female lead movies. There’s still a chance to make movies BETTER than Twilight with female leads. It is possible you know.

  • Anonymous

    Yes, they do.

  • Anonymous

    She’s the main character in the film. That makes her the lead. You’re welcome.

  • Anonymous

    I thought Taylor Lautner’s torso was the main character in the movie.

  • Guest

    I still wonder if Twilight counts as a “female lead” movie when the reason most people are going to see it is for the male eye candy.

  • Anonymous

    They do, strangely, pass the Bechdel Test. They also pass the pushing-feminism-back-a-century test.

  • http://www.thenerdybird.com/ Jill Pantozzi

    You’re right. Reread the original piece and it’s the first time *Lionsgate* has had 2 films pass the $125 mark in the same year. I’ve edited to correct it. Though I will now have to check about the other studios and if they’ve done the same with female leads. Thanks!

  • Liz

    how exactly does The Hunger Games push feminism back a century?

  • Anonymous

    I think the genre Movie exec. are looking to are YA novels which appeal to women.

  • Anonymous

    As much as I hate almost everything about TL, at least it may have done some small amount of good to counteract all that problems it’s caused & going to cause.

  • Anonymous

    Sorry, I only meant that in reference to the Twilight movies.

  • Carmen Sandiego

    I also find it interesting that these movies (to me) represent the decent end and the awful end of the Young Adult Female Led Movie spectrum. The Hunger Games I felt translated well to film, and aside from a few squabbles was decent. Twilight I felt was poorly made, written, and acted, but the base material wasn’t so good either. That they were both successes shows that there is a wide range within this genre (if we’re calling it a genre) to explore. I hope Hollywood executives feel the same way.

  • J. Preposterice

    …Could we consider using “its” where correct, for the love of female leads?