HOLLYWOOD, Calif. – After the hottest casting call since “Twilight,” we now know who will star in “The Hunger Games.” The points of the love triangle are in place and some of the decisions have the Internet buzzing.
Just this week, it was announced that Miley Cyrus' on-again-off-again boyfriend Liam Hemsworth (“The Last Song”) will play Gale Hawthorne, while Josh Hutcherson (“The Kids are All Right”) takes on the roles of Peeta Mellark.
Jennifer Lawrence, who earned an Oscar nod for her role in “Winter’s Bone,” has signed on to play teen hero Katniss Everdeen. She was the first one cast.
Based on extremely popular young-adult novel by Suzanne Collins, “The Hunger Games” is set in a post-apocalyptic world in which the government forces children to fight to the death for entertainment. The story revolved around Katniss, a 16-year-old girl who steps up to take her little sister’s place in the Hunger Games.
Peeta, whom Katniss knows from school, joins her in the arena. The pair develop a romance, but back home there is Gale, the boy with whom Katniss has a special connection.
The secondary-but-still-essential roles of Haymitch, Effie, and Prim are still open, as are the parts of Rue, Cinna and Caesar Flickerman.
Since the first announcement that Lionsgate Entertainment would adapt the book for a movie, casting has been a hot topic of discussion, especially for the main three characters.
Fans have very clear ideas about who should play Katniss, Peeta, and Gale, and those ideas don’t necessarily mesh with the reality of Lawrence, Hutcherson, and Hemsworth.
In March, Lionsgate said about 30 actresses, including Hailee Steinfeld, Abigail Breslin, Emma Roberts, Saoirse Ronan, Chloë Moretz, and Lyndsy Fonseca, were being considered for the role of Katniss. The part eventually went to Lawrence.
Collins and director Gary Ross both had a hand in the casting. Only time will tell if Lawrence, Hemsworth and Hutcherson can live up to fans’ expectations.
"The Hunger Games" is the first book of a trilogy. It has sold more than 3 million copies and has been on the best-seller list for more than 100 consecutive weeks. The second and third books in the series are "Catching Fire" and "Mockingjay."
“The Hunger Games” movie is slated for a March 23, 2012 release.
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