It’s long been rumored that Lionsgate would follow in the footsteps of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and Twilight: Breaking Dawn, but now it’s official: The adaption of the third Hunger Games book will be two movies, Deadline reports.
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 will debut on November 21, 2014, with The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 on November 20, 2015. The second adaption, Catching Fire, is slated for November 22, 2013 and due to begin filming early next year.
Does Mockingjay need two movies? Well, it’s not a huge book, ala Deathly Hallows, but there is quite a bit going on that could be expanded on… As we saw in The Hunger Games, opening the story up beyond Katniss’ immediate point of view gives a more detailed version of the story, and of all the books, Mockingjay may have the most spaces to fill. So while, yes, it’s an obvious money-grubbing, franchise expanding move, it could work out very well.
In other Hunger Games news, Lionsgate yesterday confirmed the first casting for Catching Fire: Oscar-winner Philip Seymour Hoffman (Capote) will play Plutarch Heavensbee, the new Head Gamemaker. It’s been reported that Jena Malone (Donnie Darko, Sucker Punch) has been offered the role of Johanna Mason.