Oh, The Hunger Games. Let us not forget, in the whiplash-inspiring build-up to the movie cumulating in exhausting midnight showings (and screenings for normal people at normal times) -- not to mention the reviews of the movie itself, the discourses about the marketing of the movie, and pontifications on the movie's chance to save the entire world of cinema and possibly other industries as well -- that this all was sprung from a more humble entity. A book. Lowly paper and ink, printed words capturing the madly spun ideas of one writer's mind that went on to inspire whatever interpretations and visualizations the reader desires. That is one of the undeniable, sustaining beauties of reading. While you have a compelling descriptive outline in your hands, you can still play it your own way, seeing the characters and their motivations exactly as you like.
Books often lead to movie adaptations, and so much the better for sparking a fire toward both industries -- if a movie gets more people to read, great; if avid readers get to see their beloved characters on the big-screen, that's a boon too. The Hunger Games and the two following books in the series, Catching Fire and Mockingjay, are no ordinary books, though. They've been read by literally millions of people. As Brooks Barnes and Julie Bosman write in The New York Times, "There are now 23.5 million books [from the trilogy] in print in the domestic market." These books have not only glutted the market but also, they've done very, very well—they've been on best-seller lists for, cumulatively, hundreds of weeks. And, like the Twilight and Harry Potter franchises, their readers tend to be obsessive, consuming them rapidly and wanting more, more, more. It would have been cruel to withhold a movie from these fans, not that any studio would ever have done so, considering the money-making potential. ($100 million in the first weekend is one figure being tossed around, and it's not even the highest.)