Amandla Stenberg Reveals Where the Best Dance Parties Happened on the Set of ‘The Hunger Games’
We got a chance to interview the lovely Amandla Stenberg along with our pals from The Hob, Down with the Capitol, and Hunger Games Fireside Chat at Toys “R” Us in Times Square before her huge fan signing.
If you consider yourself the ultimate fangirl/boy, you might have some competition here. Amandla collects merchandise and shared that “My entire bookshelf is covered in Hunger Games merchandise. And I don’t want to seem like I’m really self involved, but I actually am obsessed with The Hunger Games. I’m a true fan myself“
She also confessed to reading the series a whopping five times. “I know the books inside and out,” she said, and confirmed that yes, she owns her own action figure.
Here are some more highlights from our chat with Amandla:
On Filming The Hunger Games Movie
Q. Did you talk to Suzanne Collins about Rue’s character at any point?
A. Yes, I talked to her about the character. She came to set around the death scene, and I asked her about Rue and I asked her – is this how you imagined the scene? And she was like ‘yes, exactly. It’s perfect.’ And it was just so great to hear that. I also talked to her about Rue in that scene, and she told me, Rue is feeling like – although she didn’t want to die and she’s terrified, she also tried to be brave for Katniss because she wants Katniss to have hope and go on and win the Games. We talked about that.
Q. What’s one scene you wish Rue was in that she’s not?
A. You know the scene where Effie comes up to Katniss and says, “That was fantastic” ? I was actually there on set and it was just so cool, watching Woody Harrelson, Lenny Kravitz, Elizabeth Banks and all the actors do the scene because they’re all so talented. I think it would have been really fun to be part of that.
Q. If you could save one character who died in The Hunger Games, who would you save?
A. I don’t know! I think I would probably choose Thresh. Dayo’s a great actor, so that would be good for his career. And secondly, I think Thresh is a really good character and I could see him forming an alliance with Katniss and helping her in the war later on.
Q: In a recent interview, Dayo said that you filmed the District 11 reaping?
A: We did! I wish that could have been in there. Stephen Soderbergh directed it, which is really exciting. I mean he’s such a masterful director, but I got to work with him, even though they didn’t show the actual footage. That scene was really cool. They had the entire District 11 that you see in the mini uprising after Rue’s death. They had the whole stage, and the mentors and everything, so it was pretty cool.
Q. Do you have any favorite memories from being on set that you hope make it in the DVD extras footage?
A. They were shooting us 24/7, so there’s a lot that could be on there. My favorite memory? Probably us just joking around on set. Hopefully you can see us singing and dancing and having fun. And we also had dance parties in my trailer, so…
Q. What music were you playing in these dance parties?
A. We had some Little Wayne, some Chris Brown, some Pink. You know, the classics.
Q. Are you able to see the other tributes and actors as much as you want to?
A. Yeah, we still hang out. We always see each other. It can be hard because we’re all actors, so we’re always going off to shoot a movie. Willow lives in New Mexico, so we only see her when she comes into LA. But we still all hang out.
Amandla on Catching Fire
Q. If you could be cast in Catching Fire, who would you want to play?
A. Finnick – probably Finnick. He’s just so ‘look at me‘ [preans].
Q. How do you think Rue would have done in the third Quarter Quell?
A. I don’t know -that’s a tough arena! I think she is pretty quick, so I guess she could make her way around the arena every day. I think she’d do pretty well – find a way to find water.
More About Amandla
Q. When you’re not shooting what do you do to let loose?
A. I play violin, and I spend way too much time on my computer. And I love to read as well.
Q. What are you reading now?
A. Nevermore just came out in The Maximum Ride series, so I just bought it and I’m obsessed with it. I love fantasy.
Q. How much time do you spend looking at what fans are saying on Tumblr and Twitter?
A. I try not to look at it too much because I don’t want to get sucked into that. But occasionally I do look at Tumblr and I laugh so hard at the things people write and the edits they make. I saw one around Christmas time – they made Rudolph, and it was me with the red nose and the ears and everything. I love seeing those kind of things.
Q. On your way back to LA, if you had a choice would you rather go by Capitol Train or Hovercraft?
A. I think Capitol train is a little more lavish. The hovercraft is pretty awesome, but I really don’t need to be, like, injected.
Thanks to Lionsgate and Toys “R” Us for giving us a chance to catch up with Amandla and pick her brain about books, trailer dance parties, and what makes Rue tick.