Here's a bit of a switch: today's casting update for The Hunger Games doesn't involve a pair of newcomers and/or adolescent performers; instead, we get the news that Oscar-nominated character actor Stanley Tucci is the latest addition to director Gary Ross' highly-anticipated adaptation of Suzanne Collins' best-seller.
Those rumors about Tucci being offered a Hunger Games role have proven to be true; he'll be appearing as none other than Caesar Flickerman in the film, which is expected to begin production in a matter of weeks.
Here is how Lionsgate describe Tucci's Hunger Games character:
Caesar Flickerman is utterly familiar to all the citizens of Panem as the [first] host of the Hunger Games. Known for his outrageous appearance and buoyant personality, his upbeat interviews of the 24 tributes – a boy and a girl from each of the country’s 12 districts – are presented on every television in the nation. He is famous for turning any conversation around to the positive and finding humor in even the most dire circumstances.
Tucci has been working in Hollywood for over two decades now, but he seems to have become a better-known talent over the past several years. He's appeared in a number of popular films recently, including titles like Julie & Julia, The Lovely Bones, and Easy A - not to mention, he'll pop up in this summer's Captain America.
However, it's Tucci's turn as the witty fashion aficionado Nigel in The Devil Wears Prada that should really serve as proof enough for Hunger Games fans that he's a great fit to play Caesar Flickerman in Ross' film adaptation.
Once again - here are the roles that have been filled in The Hunger Games 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 9 male and female "tributes" (Imanol Yepez-Frias and Annie Thurman)
- 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)
- Gale Hawthorne (Liam Hemsworth)
- Katniss' younger sister, Prim (Willow Shields)
- Katniss and Prim's mother (Paula Malcomson)
- Effie Trinket (Elizabeth Banks)
- Gamesmaker Seneca Crane (Wes Bentley)
- Hunger Games host Caesar Flickerman (Stanley Tucci)
The Hunger Games hits theaters on March 23rd, 2012.