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'The Host' trailer premieres. Is it drafting off 'Hunger Games'?

March 23, 2012|By Rene Lynch

A trailer for "The Host" -- the new book-to-movie project by "Twilight" author Stephenie Meyer -- premiered right around the time that moviegoers were taking their seats for the first screening of"The Hunger Games."

Why is this news? "The Host" doesn't open in theaters until March 29.

Of 2013.

Is this all a coincidence? We think not. It wasn't all that long ago that Meyer was pretty much the reigning princess of young adult literature with her wildly successful "Twilight" trilogy-turned-film phenomenon. More recently, the vampire-themed romance collection has since been edged out of the spotlight by Suzanne Collins and her "Hunger Games" trilogy about a dystopian future where children are forced to fight to the death while adults bet on the outcome and cheer for carnage. The heroines of both trilogies are stunning young women with minds of their own.

Now, the two publishing sensations are being pitted against each other at the box office. It's a given that "The Hunger Games" will make millions of dollars this weekend. But everyone wants to know whether it will eclipse the success of "Twilight."

And so it's into this arena that the Chockstone Pictures trailer for "The Host" arrives. This novel, aimed at more of an adult audience, is about a frightening future where aliens take over the world -- and our bodies. (You can tell the body snatchers by their piercing blue eyes.)

You can decide whether Hollywood's timing is designed to steal some of "The Hunger Games'" thunder, or whether this is simply a smart move to target a key demographic. Either way, the trailer is a tasty little morsel that the more mature "Hunger Games" fans can watch on their smartphones while standing in line this weekend.

"The Hunger Games" is already off to a record-breaking box office start.

The Lionsgate film took in nearly $20 million at late night/early morning screenings. That was enough for IMDB.com to crown the film "the No. 1 non-sequel midnight opening in history." (Of course, a sequel is in the works.) Using the industry's penchant for parsing, IMDB also adds that "The film now ranks as the No. 7 highest-grossing midnight opening of all time."

ALSO:

Photos: Meet the cast of 'The Hunger Games'

Mad for 'Hunger Games' merchandise: nail polish, socks, crossbows...

L.A. Times review: 'Hunger Games' a winning story of sacrifice and survival

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