Hunger Games is based on the popular novel of the same name by Suzanne
find out which actresses were considered for the lead female
protagonist role of Katniss before Jennifer Lawrence won it, keep
reading The Hunger Games
movie trivia for all the details.
by: Gary Ross
Gary Ross (screenplay)
Billy Ray (screenplay)
Suzanne Collins (screenplay & novel) Starring: Jennifer Lawrence
- Katniss Everdeen
Josh Hutcherson - Peeta Mellark
Liam Hemsworth - Gale Hawthorne
Woody Harrelson - Haymitch Abernathy
Elizabeth Banks - Effie Trinket
Lenny Kravitz - Cinna
Stanley Tucci - Caesar Flickerman
Donald Sutherland - President Coriolanus Snow
Wes Bentley - Seneca Crane
Toby Jones - Claudius Templesmith
Alexander Ludwig - Cato
Isabelle Fuhrman - Clove
Amandla Stenberg - Rue
Paula Malcomson - Mrs. Everdeen
Willow Shields - Primrose Everdeen
Jacqueline Emerson - Foxface
Dayo Okeniyi - Thresh
Jack Quaid - Marvel
Leven Rambin - Glimmer
On March 2011, Lionsgate confirmed that the part of Katniss was the
first to be cast, with Jennifer Lawrence finally winning the role after
female actresses were considered, which included the following young
Chloë Grace Moretz
Jennifer Lawrence dropped out of playing the female lead in
(2012) to do this movie instead.
Lawrence, who is a
fan of the books, was initially intimidated by what it would mean for
if she took on a movie of this magnitude and she took three days to
Author Suzanne Collins had
stated that she preferred that the actress who plays Katniss to have 'a
maturity and power' and that she would rather the actress be older.
Lawrence was cast Collins stated; 'Lawrence was the only one who truly
the character I wrote in the book and that she had every essential
Other than dying her
brown for her role, Lawrence also underwent extensive training to get
in shape, including archery, combat, running, rock and tree climbing,
parkour and yoga.
Archer and Olympic bronze medalist, Khatuna Lorig, was hired by
Lionsgate to teach Lawrence how to shoot.
experienced an accident on the last day of her six week training phase,
in which she hit a wall while running at full speed, but was not
This is the second movie in two years, after Winter's
Bone (2010), in which Jennifer Lawrence plays a
character who feeds her destitute family and herself partly by catching
and killing squirrels.
Josh Hutcherson was cast, the following actors were considered
for the role of Peeta Mellark:
Alexander Ludwig - who was instead cast as Cato
While playing round on the set, apparently Jennifer Lawrence
accidentally kicked Josh Hutcherson in the head, knocking him out and
resulting in a concussion.
the role of Gale, before Liam Hemsworth was cast, the following
actors were considered:
Liam Hemsworth asked
his brother Chris Hemsworth (Thor)
to help him with the auditions
Chris would play Katniss during their practice.
Both Liam Hemsworth and
Jennifer Lawrence who are natural blonds dyed their
roles while Josh Hutcherson, who is naturally dark-haired, dyed his
for his role.
Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth, have
stated that if the next books are converted they will come
back to reprise their roles. In February 2012, The Hollywood Reporter
indicated that all three actors have all signed on to the
As Jennifer Lawrence is under contract with 20th Century Fox for a
sequel to X-Men: First Class
(2011), it was later confirmed that Catching Fire will begin production
in the fall of 2012, with the First Class sequel shooting in January
2013, allowing Lawrence to appear in both films.
John C. Reilly was considered for the role of Haymitch Abernathy, but
in May 2011 Lionsgate announced that Woody Harreslon had been cast for
In November 2011, Woody Harrelson revealed in an interview that he has
signed on for four films, suggesting that one of the books may be split
into two films.
Elizabeth Banks, who plays Effie Trinket, stated that the
worst part of her costume was the lengthy bejeweled nails because she
couldn't unbutton herself or even go to the bathroom without assistance.
Elizabeth Banks spent approximately 45 minutes every day having her
Although the character of Effie Trinket appeared in all three
books and was featured prominently in the movie, the character's name,
Effie Trinket, was never actually mentioned in the movie.
Kravitz, who plays the role of Cinna, actually knew Jennifer Lawrence
before this movie as Lawrence is friends with Kravitz's daughter, Zoe,
since they both appeared in X-Men:
Stanley Tucci, who portrays the character of Caesar Flickerman, wore a
bright blue wig, blue eyebrows, fake teeth, spray tan and lots of
makeup for his role.
Wes Bentley, who plays the role of Seneca Crane, said in an interview
with New York Magazine that the weird looking beard he wore during the
movie was styled from his own beard and not from fake hair pieces.
Paula Malcomson, who plays Katniss' mother, has actually worked with
Jennifer Lawrence before. She played Lawrence's mother in an episode of
(2003), where her character was a homeless mother struggling
to support her two children after the death of their father, which is
very much like her character in The Hunger Games.
Alexander Ludwig, who
plays one of the Career Tributes, Cato, worked out for four hours a day
with a US Navy Seal to get into shape and gained about 40
pounds for his role.
Jack Quaid, who is the son of Dennis Quaid and Meg Ryan was cast as
Marvel one of the Career Tributes.
The Hunger Games is the first part of a Trilogy series of young adult
books by Suzanne Collins. The next two in the series
are; 'Catching Fire' and 'Mockingjay'.
Author Suzanne Collins apparently came up with the idea for 'The Hunger
Grams, after watching footage of the invasion of Iraq and a reality TV
Apparently the name of the
heroine, Katniss, comes from the name of a group of edible plan
species, genus 'Sagittaria', commonly known as 'arrowhead', and this is
also a reference to the character's archery skills.
name of the fictional nation of Panem is derived from 'Panem et
Circenses', which means 'Bread and Circuses'. This comes from the
concluding days of the Roman Empire where the government would satisfy
the people by providing violent and deadly entertainment instead of
performing their public services.
In March 2009 Lions
Gate Entertainment along with Nina Jacobson's production company Color
Force acquired worldwide distribution rights to a movie
adaptation of The Hunger Games.
In November 2010 It was announced that Gary Ross will be directing The
Suzanne Collins adapted the novel for the movie herself, and her script
was revised by screenwriter Billy Ray. However, the first draft of the
script was then replaced by one written by Collins and director Gary
As part of the underwriting process Fireman's Fund Insurance Company
insisted on a thorough risk analysis of hazards, including wayward
arrows, poison ivy, bears, bugs and a chase across fast-running water.
photography began in May 2011 near Brevard in Transylvania County in
Western North Carolina with an initial budget of $75 million and
concluded in September 2011 with a final budget of between $90 and $100
million but reduced to $78 million after subsidies.
Most of this movie was shot in the woods of North Carolina, especially
in and around Charlotte and Asheville.
Steven Soderbergh served as one of the second unit directors.
to the tightness of the schedule the movie was shot on film and not
digital. Director Ross stated in an interview with The New York Times;
'I didn't want to run the risk of the technical issues that often come
with shooting digitally, we simply couldn't afford any delays.'
Gary Ross, confirmed that his decision to include the shaky camera
scenes was to reflect the urgency of what's happening in the arena
during the games and to reflect the protagonist, Katniss' point of view.
In the scene where it's
mentioned that Gale has had his name put in for reaping multiple times,
it's never explained in the movie why anyone would want to do this
since putting your name into the reaping many times raises the
possibility that that person would be selected to compete in the games
and may die. The reason for this is given in the novel, which is if a
person puts their name in multiple times this actually helps their
family get additional portions of supplies such as food and oil,
therefore, poor families would put the names of their children in for
the reaping more than once in exchange for extra food supplies.
the scene that Katniss uses a four-note melody as her signal
Rue, the notes are re-fa-mi-do, which is from in solfège.
The famous 'Wilhelm scream' can be heard from one of the victims in the
scene when Katniss cuts off a tree branch and make the nest of tracker
jackers fall onto some of her opponents.
the design for the Cornucopia was
inspired by the work of architect Frank Gehry.
Costume designer, Judianna Makovsky, made a minimum of 1,800
for the citizens of the Capitol.
More than 35 full-time makeup artists were needed to work on the main
characters and over 500 extras.
composer Danny Elfman and T-bone Burnett were set to score the music
for The Hunger Games, with Burnett also acting as executive music
However, Elfman was later replaced by James Newton Howard due to
The indie rock band, Arcade Fire also contributed to the movie's
original score. They composed the ominous Panem national anthem,
entitled "Horn of Plenty", which appears throughout the
movie. Butler, who co-wrote the song with Chassagne explained;
"There's an anthem that runs throughout the books, the national
anthem of the fascist Capitol. So as a thought experiment, we tried to
write what that might sound like. It's like the Capitol's idea of
itself, basically. It's not a pop song or anything. More of an anthem
anthem that could
be playing at a big sporting event like the Hunger Games. So
we did a
structure for that, and then James Newton Howard made a movie-score
version of it that happens in several places in the film."
The soundtrack for the The Hunger Games contains songs inspired by the
film, buy only three actually appear in the movie itself, during the
closing credits. The first single released from the film's
companion album was "Safe & Sound" by Taylor Swift featuring
The Civil Wars. The soundtrack also features songs by The Decemberists,
Arcade Fire, The Secret Sisters, Miranda Lambert featuring The Pistol
Annies, Neko Case, Kid Cudi, Academy Award winner Glen Hansard, The Low
Anthem, Punch Brothers, Birdy, Maroon 5, Jayme Dee, and Carolina
Chocolate Drops. Jennifer Lawrence singing "Rue's Lullaby" was not
included on the soundtrack.
For the cornucopia scene a rather obscure analog track from
the 1970s composed by Laurie Spiegel was featured.
In May 2011, Entertainment Weekly revealed on their cover the
first photo of Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen.
The first teaser trailer was revealed during the 2011 MTV Video Music
Awards and as Lawrence wasn't able to attend the event due to
filming, she presented the teaser through a pre-recorded video. The
official trailer was released on November 14, 2011.
Four weeks before The Hunger Games' opening, Lionsgate sold tickets in
advance tickets. Not only did the ticket sales break the one-day record
originally held by The Twilight Saga: Eclipse
(2010), but also accounted for 83% of the ticket sales of the day. And
the film now holds the record for the fifth-best opening day
ever, bringing in $68.3 million.
Despite the books high popularity, Lionsgate admitted that the chances
of Catching Fire and Mockingjay being converted into films all depended
on the money that The Hunger Games would make. However, in
August 2011, while still shooting the film, Lionsgate
announced that a film adaptation of the second novel in, Catching Fire,
is scheduled to be released on November 22, 2013.
In November 2011, Lionsgate entered negotiations with screenwriter
Simon Beaufoy, who wrote Slumdog
Millionaire (2008) and 127 Hours
(2010), to adapt Catching Fire for screen, as the
post-production schedule for The Hunger Games was too crowded for Ross
and Collins to adapt the next film as originally planned.
In January 2012 Gary Ross was still expected to return as director for
the sequel. However, in April 2012 Ross officially confirmed that he
would not be returning to direct Catching Fire. He stated; 'Despite
recent speculation in the media, and after difficult but sincere
consideration, I have decided not to direct Catching Fire. As a writer
and a director, I simply don’t have the time I need to write and prep
the movie I would have wanted to make because of the fixed and tight
Take a look at the part 1 and 2 of interview with director Gary Ross,
talking about why he made the movie, about the story and cast: