The Hunger Games set the box office alight this March and April, when it turned its $80m. budget into more than $650m. at the international box office.
Lionsgate are naturally now turning their attentions to the sequel of Suzanne Collins’ original novel, which is to be called The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.
I Am Legend’s Francis Lawrence officially came on board in May, taking over the helm from Gary Ross, and now THR reports that the ever-brilliant actress, Jena Malone, has been offered the part of Johanna Mason,
“the ax-wielding former Hunger Games winner from District 7, who aligns with Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson) in their return to the arena for an all-star death match.”
Malone first really made a name for herself starring opposite Jake Gyllenhaal in Donnie Darko, and has since followed that with excellent performances in Into the Wild, The Messenger, Sucker Punch, and the upcoming Paul Dano-starrer, For Ellen.
Though Malone is perhaps not a household name, she is by far one of the finest actresses of her generation, and taking up a role like this could certainly help put her on more people’s radar, which is much deserved.
Oscar-winner Simon Beaufoy (Slumdog Millionaire, 127 Hours) has penned the script, with the original cast of Jennifer Lawrence, Liam Hemsworth, Josh Hutcherson, Elizabeth Banks, Woody Harrelson, Stanley Tucci, and Donald Sutherland all set to return, and Philip Seymour Hoffman expected to be joining the cast as Plutarch Heavensbee.
The Hunger Games: Cathing Fire will be rolling into production in late-September, with a release date already set for 22nd November, 2013. Expect another great marketing campaign in the run-up next year.
And if you missed the first film, then you should be able to pre-order the DVD/Blu-ray now from your retailer of choice, with its release set for 3rd September.