As predicted, Lionsgate’s ‘The Hunger Games’ broke box office records when it was released over the weekend. The Hunger Games grossed $155 million, more than double what the film ‘Twilight’ raked in during its opening weekend in 2008 ($69.9 million).
But one thing movie critics didn’t predict was the racial tensions that would overshadow the film’s opening weekend and evoke hateful social commentary from passionate fans of the book on which the film was based.
Taking a page out of today’s cultural obsession with reality TV, The Hunger Games pits young television contestants against each other in a brutal, real-life battle to the death.
But fans of the book are outraged at the film’s writers for taking artistic liberties with the book’s big screen adaptation (two of the book’s principal characters are played by black actors).
“Rue” is played by 13-year-old actress Amandla Stenberg, and the sensitive “Cinna” is played by hunky singer-turned-actor Lenny Kravitz.
The book’s fans, some of whom waited in line for days for the midnight showing on Friday, vented their racist hatred on Twitter.com and other social outlets.
One person wrote, “why does rue have to be black not gonna lie kinda ruined the movie.”
Another person tweeted: “cinna and rue werent suppose to be black. why did the producer make all the good characters black.”
One bigot happily tweeted a movie spoiler on Twitter: “call me racist but when i found out rue was black her death wasn’t as sad #ihatemyself.”