As Harry Potter and Twilight proved, the decision to split a highly-anticipated book adaptation into two films is always a controversial one. Such was the case when Lionsgate announced that Mockingjay, the finale of The Hunger Games trilogy, would receive a similar treatment. Some fans worry that telling the story in two films will disrupt the flow of the narrative, while others believe it will simply give the plot more time to develop as it does on the page.
In the case of Hunger Games, fans certainly earned a bit more confidence when Mockingjay screenwriter Danny Strong – previously best known for his onscreen recurring roles on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Gilmore Girls – received an Emmy Award for his work on the HBO film Game Change. Now fans have another reason to think that splitting up the Hunger Games finale just might work.
According to THR, Strong has already begun work on the second half of the Mockingjay two-parter. The writer's initial deal was to write both parts, but the studio first had to approve his work on Part 1 before he moved on to the climactic conclusion of Katniss Everdeen's (Jennifer Lawrence) journey.
We still have no details regarding which point of the story will serve as the breaking point between the two films, but the studio's response to the script can only be seen as a good sign to fans. Bringing Strong aboard also may have been a sharp move for Lionsgate, considering the political nature of the Mockingjay plot.
Catching Fire director Francis Lawrence is also expected back for the final two entries in the (now four-part) series. It appears then that the powers-that-be are pleased with the team they have gradually put together for the blockbuster franchise, but moviegoers won't get their first look at Lawrence's take on the fictional world of Panem until late this year.
Do you think Mockingjay will work as a two-film tale? Let us know in the comments section below.