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The Hunger Games: Catching Fire blazes into record books

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire has set the box office alight after debuting with a record-breaking $161.1 million .

The movie sequel, starring Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth, claimed the fourth highest-grossing opening weekend of all time, behind Marvel's The Avengers, Iron Man 3 and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2.


The film, based on the books by Suzanne Collins, also became the biggest new release in November, easily overtaking the previous record of $142 million earned by The Twilight Saga: New Moon upon its launch in 2009, while it proved to be more popular than the original The Hunger Games, which opened with $152.5 million last year (12).


Catching Fire blazed its way to the top of the global box office too, hauling in $307.7 million outside of North America.


Meanwhile, Thor: The Dark World settled for second place on the chart with $14.1 million in takings, and romantic comedy The Best Man Holiday drew $12.5 million .


New Vince Vaughn comedy Delivery Man limped in at number four, while animated film Free Birds rounded out the new top five.