Crossroads fans line up early to see 'The Hunger Games' (Video)
March 22, 2012 at 10:02 p.m.
Updated March 22, 2012 at 10:23 p.m.
Kayla Black and her friends began their stakeout for the midnight opening of "The Hunger Games" at 4:45 p.m. Thursday.
"I was the first one here," Black said. "My friend Alyssa Sucher walked in two minutes behind me."
By 8 p.m., the 12:01 a.m. showing of "The Hunger Games" sold out, and 200 seats remained of 282 seats for a 12:05 a.m. showing, said assistant manager Jessica Montez. That's compared to five screens that sold out completely for the midnight showing of "The Twilight Saga: New Moon."
However, several tickets have already sold for the regular show times on Friday and Saturday, said concession salesman Seth Brambley.
Black and four of her friends were eager to watch the movie on opening night because they were so taken with the book series.
"It's amazing. Unlike anything I've read before," Black said.
The main character was especially strong, Sucher said, and she hopes the movie remains true to the book.
Black also was optimistic about the movie closely following the book series.
"Sometimes it's hit or miss, but from the stills and clips I've seen, it seems accurate," Black said. "They have cast all the characters well. I think it's going to be really good."
It is not unusual for Black to wait up until midnight when movies based on her favorite book series come out in theaters - but she insists on reading the books before watching the movies.
"I loved 'Harry Potter.' I'm in the process of throwing away the 'Twilight' phase of my life," Black said.
With candy, books, matching homemade T-shirts, movies on a laptop and even pizzas being delivered, the seasoned movie theater campers were well stocked for their almost eight-hour wait.
"We'll also just sit and talk a lot," Black said. "It's all about the memories you make. And the friends you make - people you meet in line that you wouldn't ordinarily talk to."
Alex Fiew, 18, of Victoria, who joined the line at about 5 p.m. met one such friend while waiting.
Once she completed the homework she brought to occupy her time, Fiew struck up a conversation with 35-year-old Norma Sanchez, who was in line behind her.
Both fans overestimated how far in advance they needed to arrive for the movie and were growing bored. The discussion of their mutual boredom soon switched to talking about "Hunger Games."
Sanchez read the first book, but is waiting to see the movie before reading the other books.
Both Sanchez and Fiew agreed that the writing style of the author draws readers in.
"My mom read the first book in one night," Fiew said.
As she read all three "Hunger Games" books, Fiew was drawn in by the deeper message of the importance of a vigilant society.
"When she was writing the book, the author said if you combine Afghanistan and reality television, people will watch it," Sanchez said.
Fiew said it is important to remain alert to keep society from reveling in other people's pain.
From the entertainment found in some reality television and the suffering of celebrities - such as Kim Kardashian's divorce - Fiew said it's easy to numb ourselves to others' suffering.
"We need to watch what is happening in the government and also what we choose to participate in," Fiew said.
"We, as a society, like to watch people suffer and have problems. It's terrible."