New ‘Catching Fire’ Character Images for Katniss, Peeta, Gale & More

Those of you dying for new imagery need wait no longer. Thanks to a tip sent to us by Phil, we’ve learned that the Hunger Games Explorer site has added new character images for Katniss, Peeta, Gale, Haymitch, Effie, Caesar, Beetee, Finnick, Prim, and Plutarch Heavensbee. Feast your eyes on them below and visit the site to check it out because it looks like they’re adding victors RIGHT NOW!

 

OFFICIAL: Stef Dawson Cast as Annie Cresta for ‘Mockingjay’ Movies

Tributes, we have our Annie Cresta! Please welcome Stef Dawson to the cast of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, parts 1 and 2.

Stef is from Australia and a relative newcomer to Hollywood. If you want to know a bit more about her, you can see her IMDb profile here, follow her on Twitter here, and on Instagram here. You can also look her up on Youtube, there are a few clips and interviews of her! Below we have a Showreel of some of her roles, from Australian acting agency Bennett Artist Management.

What do you think of Stef? Are you happy we finally have our Annie? Let us know in a comment!

OFFICIAL: Game of Thrones Actress Natalie Dormer Cast as Cressida

It’s begun, Tributes! We have our first official casting for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay 1 & 2! Natalie Dormer, who some of you may know as the actress who plays Margaery Tyrell in Game of Thrones, has been cast as Cressida, the Capitol director that relocates to District 13 with Plutarch Heavensbee and films Katniss throughout the rebellion.

https://twitter.com/TheHungerGames/status/370654706550329346/photo/1

Liam Hemsworth Talks ‘Mockingjay,’ Confirms Filming Starts September

Liam Hemsworth has been doing the media rounds for his latest film, Paranoia, which premieres in the US next weekend, on August 16th. However, it’s inevitable that he’d be asked some questions about his role of Gale in the Hunger Games franchise, and here’s some of what he had to say about it.

He talked to HitFix about Gale’s increased role in Catching Fire, but that Gale’s true protagonism doesn’t kick in until Mockingjay.

And via our friends at Hunger-Games.net, we also have video of Liam’s interview on Good Morning America, in which he talks about working with Jennifer Lawrence, director Francis Lawrence, and confirms that Mockingjay part 1 starts filming in September.

Are you looking forward to Gale’s role in Catching Fire and the Mockingjay films? Be sure to tell us what you think in a comment!

Francis Lawrence Confirms Filming for Catching Fire has Wrapped

There’s been a lot of reports about further filming for Catching Fire happening over the past few weeks, with casting calls in Atlanta being announced even as recently as last weekend. But now our director himself, Francis Lawrence, confirmed at CinemaCon this week that filming for the movie has now wrapped and they’re working on editing, as reported via Twitter by Perri Nemiroff from Shockya and Movies.com.

With filming for Mockingjay reported to begin in September, Francis Lawrence still has a tight schedule ahead of him over the next few months. What do you think of this news?

Thanks to the Hunger Games Examiner for the tip!

Google Maps Updates Satellite Images of Catching Fire Cornucopia

Back when filming was first beginning, we reported that filming was going to be taking place at a man-made beach at Clayton County’s park The Beach. Thanks to a tip from @starfishtony, we now can view images of the Catching Fire Cornucopia on Google Maps!

Spoilers, obviously!

And heeey, I don’t remember Suzanne Collins putting a purple water slide in the Arena!

Lionsgate Announces Remaining Cast for ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’

In a very bizarre turn of casting events, Lionsgate has suddenly announced via CatchingFireCasting.com ALL of the remaining cast for ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’, including the elusive mystery woman, who has turned out to be an extremely terrible letdown (in my opinion). Cast includes:

  • James Logan as District 5 Male
  • Ivette Li-Sanchez as District 5 Female
  • Justin Hix as District 6 Male
  • Megan Hayes as District 6 Female
  • Bobby Jordan as Blight
  • John Casino as Woof
  • Elena Sanchez as Cecelia
  • Daniel Bernhardt as District 9 Male
  • Marian Green as District 9 Female
  • Jackson Spidell as District 10 Male
  • Tiffany Waxler as District 10 Female

And the mystery woman is no mystery at all. She’s simply… Katniss’ mom.

Review: ‘The Hunger Games’ is an Urgent, Exciting, and Moving Experience

This review is by Mockingjay.net owner Kimmy West – it includes some minor spoilers, but I gave a second warning for the major one at the end.

Just wow. Since launching this site in 2009, I’ve been anxious and excited to someday see the film version of The Hunger Games. I expected some level of ‘Hollywood’ – pointless changes, glamorization, fakeness, and always had that nagging worry that the movie would be a huge disappointment. After seeing it I can say…this movie is amazing. Fans of the books and non-fans alike will be entertained, intrigued, and moved by Gary Ross’ film version of Suzanne Collins’ novel.

The Hunger Games may be the best adaptation of a book I’ve ever seen. I think the best way to explain why is, when I watch the film adaptations of other books (Harry PotterPercy Jackson, or Twilight, for example), it’s a very different experience. It’s cool to see a version of a book that I love on screen, and I absolutely love many adaptations of books, but I don’t really feel the same way watching the movies as I did when reading. While the actors and directors do a great job creating entertaining movies, the films are very separate experiences for me.

The Hunger Games book and film are perfectly complementary experiences. With The Hunger Games film, I felt all the same emotions I did while reading the book and it just really came to life for me. I believed the actors were the characters that I read in the books. Josh Hutcherson is Peeta. Jennifer Lawrence is Katniss. Elizabeth Banks is Effie. I don’t mean it was a perfect scene by scene, word by word adaptation. Things were changed, scenes were added, as you need to do to make a good movie – but it was just so faithful, and true to the novel’s message. It was also just an entertaining, and moving film in it’s own right.

Note: I will say, I did not read the book right before seeing the film, unlike Crystal – I haven’t read the novel for quite a while. I recommend you do the same. I believe it’s never good to read a book right before seeing it’s movie since you’ll be sure to nit-pick and be more aware of small details that will inevitably be changed.

Fans of the book will be happy to see that many key scenes are shot almost shockingly true to how they were written. Scenes in this category include: Katniss & Gale’s conversation before the reaping, the reaping, the tracker jacker scene, the destruction of the supplies (explosion scene), the final battle between the 3 tributes, Peeta and Katniss’ interviews, the dinner scene between Katniss / Peeta / Haymitch (Peeta telling Katniss that even his mother believes that Katniss will win, not him), the nightlock scene involving Foxface and the one at the end; and even to a certain extent, Rue’s death scene. (Yes, that amount of insane faithfulness!)

Scenes are added that aren’t in the book, but work well, due to the fact that we can break away from Katniss’ perspective. Removing the character of Madge works – I love how it emphasizes the special relationship that Katniss and Prim share. It makes the Mockingjay pin even more precious. Being able to see Seneca Crane control the arena makes it even more sadistic in a way, and the CGI of the control room is done extremely well. The beginnings of a rebellion are shown after Rue’s death, which isn’t mentioned in the novel, and I believe this is a smart choice. It was done with Suzanne Collins’ blessing (she loved the idea, according to Gary Ross), and it really does set things up perfectly for Catching Fire. The scene which was released between Seneca Crane and President Snow (“Hope is the only thing stronger than fear”) also strengthens this threat of uprising – and really emphasizes the fact that Katniss is the mockingjay, and the one that is creating this spark of rebellion. Perfect!

There are plenty of moments of comic relief, which is important due to the deep and serious nature of the material. You’ll be sure to giggle at a moment involving Rue in the training center, the snipes between Effie and Haymitch, and many others. Then, there are the tear jerkers. If Willow Shields’ performance in this movie as Prim doesn’t cause you to tear up a little bit, I’m not sure if you have a heart! It really is truly heartbreaking. Just wait until you see the scene where Katniss has to say goodbye to her – it makes me understand why Gary Ross and the casting director were moved to tears when the scene was performed for Jennifer’s audition.

The Capitol’s garish fashions and outlandishness contrast harshly with the run-down District 12, and Elizabeth Banks is spot-on as Effie Trinket. It’s pretty crazy how perfect Stanley Tucci is as Caesar…but then again, he’s Stanley Tucci. He really embodies the severe strangeness, yet kindness, of the futuristic talk-show host. The reactions of the Capitol extras and how into the whole event they all seem to be, really makes the premise of the film even more interesting and scary.

Once you get into the games, things really start getting urgent and quick. The scene right before Katniss goes up in the tube to the arena just is so…visceral. You can really feel her terror in that moment, she thinks she’s going to die, and is scared out of her mind. Which is what anyone would feel like in that situation! I don’t want to spoil the actual games for anyone, but I will say that they are fast paced and full of a lot of great action. This is where my few gripes come in.

Firstly, in the books Katniss has problems finding water. She feels the cold, has trouble finding enough to eat. In the film I find that it seems to come a little bit too easy to her – finding supplies and staying alive (aside from the fact that people are hunting her) seems to be pretty simple for her, which wasn’t the case in the novel. Another gripe I had is that Haymitch’s character is verycleaned up. He’s described as very gross in the novels, and Harrelson’s version is much less so – however he does get the core of the character correct, in my opinion, which is most important to me.

Thirdly, the whole love debacle between Peeta and Katniss has been a touchy subject in many reviews. From a reader’s perspective, I could totally tell that Katniss was faking the love to some extent, but it did get a little blurred in points. Peeta seemed sincere but you never really know if he’s being truthful until the end when he tells Katniss to kill him and win. However, I feel like the oversight a lot of reviewers are making here is…maybe that is what film-makers were going for?

Due to the lack of internal monologue from Katniss, you really need to show the uneasiness that she feels towards Peeta. Is he doing this just to get at her? You can’t make it too obvious that he actually really loves her, and it can’t be too obvious that it’s fake. They have to convince the Panem audience, so why not us as well? It is such a difficult plot-line to get across on screen without voice-over, which I’m glad they didn’t use. In the final interview where Katniss is told to really put on the ‘star-crossed lovers’ show, I could see in Jennifer’s performance that Katniss was not as in love as she was saying she was. Although, that may not be apparent to someone that isn’t a fan of the books.

Major spoiler below this point….

Last warning…..

A huge surprise is that the movie does not include the, “It was all for the games, how you acted?” scene. This makes the whole confusion regarding the star-crossed lovers okay with me since I’m thinking they actually want it to be extremely confusing for the viewer. We don’t know how they are really feeling, but we will find out! They’ll open Catching Fire somehow with this scene – then that drama can really get the ball rolling and we’ll understand everything going on in their heads during the first installment.

Overall, the film is just so real. Gary Ross said in a previous interview that his major challenge with making the movie was keeping it feeling like a real event, not a cleaned up, fake-ish, Hollywood spectacle of one. I’m happy to say, he succeeded. The viewer really feels like they’ve experienced a jarring, severe experience. You laugh, you cry, there’s action-packed excitement – you experience love and loss. On March 23rd, the whole world really will be watching. We’ve got ourselves a new phenomenon.