We're slowly but surely approaching the end of Lionsgate's ingenious (and tedious) process of announcing small bits of casting news for The Hunger Games on an almost daily basis. Two more "tribute" roles have been filled in the popular novel-turned-film adaptation, along with an important adult part that Woody Harrelson was previously rumored to have been been offered.
Newcomers Mackenzie Lintz and Samuel Tan will play the nameless District 8 "tributes" in Gary Ross' Hunger Games movie; in addition, Wes Bentley has officially landed the role of Head Gamesmaker Seneca Crane in the film.
Lionsgate revealed the news about Lintz and Tan in its customary fashion (via Facebook); Deadline got the scoop on Bentley, a fellow who's still best known as the drug-dealing videophile neighbor in American Beauty. It ought to be mentioned that Bentley is some 17 years younger than Harrelson - so I leave it to Hunger Games book fans to decide whether they prefer the idea of a younger or an older Mr. Crane in the film.
As for the latest "tributes" casting: it's good to see the film will feature a relatively diverse collection of young newcomers. As I understand it, the setting of Panem (i.e., a dystopian society that has replaced the U.S.A. in the future) of Suzanne Collin's original Hunger Games novel is largely segregated according to social class and background - that is, which of the twelve Districts people hale from.
So in Collins' work, the residents of each District tend to vary a bit with regards to their racial background - and the movie adaptation looks to embrace that concept, to (again, a relatively) noticeable degree.
Here, in order, are the District "tribute" roles filled in the Hunger Games movie so far:
- District 1 pair Marvel and Glimmer (Jake Quaid and Leven Rambin).
- District 3 male and female representatives (Ian Nelson and Kalia Prescott)
- District 4 “career tributes” (Ethan Jamieson and Tara Macken)
- District 5 male “tribute” and Foxface (Chris Mark and Jacqueline Emerson)
- District 6 male and female “tributes” (Ashton Moio and Kara Petersen)
- District 7 male and female “tributes” (Sam Ly and Leigha Hancock)
- District 8 male and female "tributes" (Samuel Tan and Mackenzie Lintz)
- District 11 members Thresh and Rue (Dayo Okeniyi and Amandla Stenberg)
- District 12 members (and the story’s protagonists) Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson).
Bentley joins Elizabeth Banks and Paula Malcomson as being officially confirmed members of the adult character cast in Hunger Games. There are still three more pairs of "tribute" roles to be filled and a handful of supporting parts as well, so check back tomorrow...
The Hunger Games arrives in theaters on March 23rd, 2012.