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Lions Gate's strong 2Q driven by 'Hunger Games'

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. posted fiscal second-quarter earnings and profits on Thursday that blew past analysts' expectations, thanks to home video sales of "The Hunger Games."

Net income in the three months to Sept. 30 hit $75.5 million, or 53 cents per share, reversing a loss of $25.3 million, or 19 cents per share, a year ago.

Revenue nearly doubled to $707 million from $358 million.

Analysts were looking for 9 cents per share of earnings on revenue of $620 million.

Shares jumped $1.29, or 8.8 percent, to $15.89 in after-hours trading following the release of results. Before the announcement, shares closed down 48 cents, or 3.2 percent, at $14.60.

The company is now looking forward to the release of the finale in the "Twilight" series, which debuts in the U.S. on Nov. 16.

Lions Gate acquired the series when it bought studio Summit Entertainment for $412.5 million in cash and stock in January.