The Hunger Games film adaptation hasn’t even come out yet, but I am already anticipating that I will (hopefully) love this film. I’ve read the books and grown with the characters and (as usual) become very emotionally invested in them. Mostly, when a movie comes out based on a book that I loved, I have hated it. There have been so many times where not only the story is wrong in the film but the casting makes it worse (thats right, Time Travelers Wife, I’m looking at you). The Hunger Games however, looks like the casting for the film is going to be perfect.
Even though I haven’t seen the film yet, I have a feeling that the casting is going to be right on. We know who is going play the three main characters. We have Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen, Josh Hutcherson as Peeta Mellark, and we have Liam Hemsworth as Gale Hawthorne. I practically read the whole trilogy over the span of two days so I lived and loved with these characters. After watching the first trailer for the film, I didn’t immediately hate their choices for the three characters like I normally do when a great book is adapted.
Jennifer Lawrence – Katniss Everdeen
When I first saw who was set to play the main character, I was a little worried. Like most people I had an image already set in my head of what she should look like. Her brown braid hanging to the side, her fierce gaze and the way she exuded strength. It wasn’t until I saw this picture:
that I really felt like Lawrence had what it took. She really embodied the character. I could see Katniss in her and I could picture her doing the things the character did in the novel easily. (And I could easily see how both Peeta and Gale are in love with her!)
Considering the studio went through dozens of auditions from many many young actresses looking to play the role, I think the studio was very fortunate to find and obtain Lawrence for the role.
Looking at the book, I can also picture Lawrence as the girl that was on fire.
My only concern is how they are going to portray her after the games are over. How are they going to make her look as emaciated as the book describes her looking? It will definitely be a task to make her look like she hasn’t eaten hardly in weeks (or show her tripping on tracker jacker venom, that will be interesting) but judging by this still released of her in the games, I say its going to be great.
Josh Hutcherson – Peeta Mellark
Can I just say that I love Peeta? He is my favorite character of the series. He is just so sweet, and caring, and romantic yet strong willed, brave and courageous. I definitely felt for him the entire series. My heart ached for him when he confessed his love for Katniss (even if it may or may not have been staged at that moment). I wanted to hug him when Katniss accidentally said her loving him was an act (even if it wasn’t completely an act).
This image from the trailer, is when I took notice of Josh and how awesome he is to play Peeta. The look on his face breaks my heart, and I felt the same way when I read the scene in the novel.
I was worried that Josh wouldn’t be able to capture the puppy dog eyed love of Peeta as well as the fierce brutality he shows during the games. That is a hard combo to achieve, but Josh does it and he does it amazingly. I don’t know if it is because I love Peeta so much or if this is just a really great still, but I really see him as loving Katniss and willing to protect her at all costs.
I think what sealed the deal though, that Josh was perfect for the role, was the scene where he does his interview with Ceasar. The trailer doesn’t show him professing his love, but if you’ve read the book you probably experienced it with as much surprise as Katniss did in the actual scene. I think the photo still really shows the emotion of the scene. I think Josh really knows how to play the love stricken boy and the man fighting for his life.
And you can’t help but love Peeta during the games. He looks so strong, manly…. and so muscle-y. (what can I say, I like a man who can profess his love for me then go compete in a battle royal-esque game). So I give you this image of Josh as Peeta in the arena.
Liam Hemsworth – Gale Hawthorne
I think that Liam as Gale was the one I was most worried about. It took me a bit longer to accept him as the character. But the more stills I saw from the film the more he began to make sense as Gale. This one in particular sealed his fate in my mind as Gale. I’m not sure why this picture made a difference to me, maybe it was because it was one of the first stills to be released and not just a character poster, but it made me stop thinking of him as Liam but as Gale in context to the film (and pretty much in real life too).
In the novel he is described as being very handsome with all the girls talking about him and wanting him but his attention is else where with Katniss (and taking care of his family). In a few pictures of him as Gale, you can tell, even in picture form, that he cares deeply for Katniss and in that sense, I knew that he would do well in the film. (And yes, I think Liam is just as attractive as Gale is described in the novel). In this picture in particular, I saw it and immediately recalled the scene from the book. It fit perfectly in. It takes place at the Reaping, and you can definitely tell what is going on by the look on his face. His love for Katniss, and his concern for her (and even her family).
I honestly wanted to cry when he has to pull Prim off of Katniss after she volunteers. It was a heartbreaking scene in the book, and after watching the trailer, it looks to be just as heartbreaking in the film. Liam definitely accomplishes within the scene to make it as painful as it was in the novel.
My only concern for his portrayal of the character is this: The trilogy mentions the fact that Katniss and Gale look very similar several times through our the books. It even becomes a major point of the second book. But the actors don’t look alike in anyway, so I wonder how they will handle this when the second movie comes around and it has to be addressed. (Although they did dye their hair to almost identical hues so that does help the illusion.)
All in all, I am really pleased as of right now with the casting of the Hunger Games. I realize though that the movie hasn’t even come out yet, so my high hopes of an amazing adaptation might just as well be killed (and then we have to live with three more movies that don’t work). However, for once, I have a good feeling about the adaptation.
You can read a rebuttal of my opinions on the casting of this film here at BSCkids.
Oh yeah, I love Peeta. Did I mention that already?