It's hard to believe that three days have passed since we last brought you a casting update for The Hunger Games, isn't it? Lionsgate has clearly realized the benefits of announcing news about the adaptation's cast a bit at a time - and, due to the nature of the business, that strategy allows the film to constantly make headlines around the movie news blogosphere.
Today brings the update that the nameless District Three "tributes" in Hunger Games will be played by newcomers Ian Nelson and Kalia Prescott. Okay, technically Prescott isn't a newcomer, seeing as that she appeared as an uncredited extra in Where the Wild Things Are - but close enough.
For those of you who are still wondering just what this Hunger Games movie is, here's a more official description that sheds some light on the basic setup of Suzanne Collins' novel:
In a not-too-distant future, the United States of America has collapsed, weakened by drought, fire, famine, and war, to be replaced by Panem, a country divided into the Capitol and 12 districts. Each year, two young representatives from each district are selected by lottery to participate in The Hunger Games. Part entertainment, part brutal intimidation of the subjugated districts, the televised games are broadcasted throughout Panem as the 24 participants are forced to eliminate their competitors, literally, with all citizens required to watch.
EW confirmed this latest bit of casting news for Hungers Games. Here are the district representative or "tribute" roles in the film that have been filled so far:
- District 12 members (and the story's protagonists) Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson)
- District 11 members Thresh and Rue (Dayo Okeniyi and Amandla Stenberg)
- District 1 pair Marvel and Glimmer (Jake Quaid and Leven Rambin).
- District 3 male and female representatives (Ian Nelson and Kalia Prescott)
A couple of supporting roles in The Hunger Games have been cast as well - specifically, those of Gale Hawthorne (Liam Hemsworth), Prim Everdeen (Willow Shields) and Prim/Katniss' mother (Paula Malcomson). Elizabeth Banks and Johny C. Reilly are currently in talks to play important supporting parts in the film as well.
With so many newcomers signed on to appear in The Hunger Games, it's difficult to say how well the main cast will do as an ensemble. This literary adaptation is nonetheless poised to fare better than its peers (see: the first Harry Potter or Chronicles of Narnia movie ) since its two most important roles - that of Katniss and Peeta - will be filled by experienced thespians who have already proven themselves (as always, in my opinion) to be more than capable at their craft. So take that for what it's worth.
The Hunger Games hits theaters on March 23rd, 2012