The highly anticipated sequel -- starring Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth -- pulled in $161.1 million in domestic sales, out-earning its 2012 predecessor The Hunger Games ($152.5 million).
Catching Fire had the fourth-best domestic debut of all time. It also broke the record for best-ever November debut, blowing past the The Twilight Saga: New Moon, which earned $142.9 million in 2009.
Co-producer Nina Jacobson said positive reviews, a bigger budget and Jennifer Lawrence's post-Oscar star power helped push Catching Fire past the franchise's first film.
“One takeaway for us here is that Jennifer Lawrence is not only a giant movie star, but she’s a movie star for everybody,” Jacobson told The New York Times.
Thor: The Dark World came in at second place.
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