Jennifer Lawrence to star in The Hunger Games

Well, it’s official: The Wrap reports that Jennifer Lawrence has won the role of Katniss Everdeen in the Hollywood adaption of the bestselling YA series The Hunger Games. The choice has been somewhat controversial among some fans of the budding franchise.

Lawrence, 20, is hot off an Academy Award nomination for Winter’s Bone, and also plays Mystique in June’s X-Men: First Class.

UPDATE: MTV has the statement from author Suzanne Collins on the casting, while director Gary Ross discusses the decision with Entertainment Weekly.

10 Replies to “Jennifer Lawrence to star in The Hunger Games

  1. Hopefully it’ll turn out cool, but in addition to the age thing there’s the issue that Katniss is described in the book as dark haired/olive-skinned, and the casting call for movie Katniss specified “Caucasian.” Didn’t we just go through this with ATLA? More here.

  2. Better a good actor than a perfect physical match, I always say. And by always, I mean right now for the first time.

  3. Agreed, and nothing against Jennifer Lawrence. But if all they’re looking for is a good actress regardless of physical appearance, why on earth would they specify “Caucasian” in the casting call?

  4. It’s a good point, but in fairness, I’m not sure there’s a catch-all for olive skin/dark hair, etc. If I was forced to give a quick physical description of Katniss, I’d probably have sprung for Caucasian. She’s not black, she’s not Asian, and… well, anything in between can be fudged with makeup.

  5. And away we go!

    I just find it hard to believe they couldn’t find another actress who matched in looks.

    Yes, there are wigs, etc, but still. Really?

  6. *pause* hmm, well, it was possible to give Ben Barnes an olive complexion in the second Narnia film, and of course there’s always wigs and hair dye, so looks-wise I think she’ll be able to pull it off. Just as long as she’s not a blonde in the film, I won’t complain too much about her appearance.

  7. Ben Barnes didn’t have to be dark complexioned in the Narnia movies. There’s no where in the booksthat Lewis writes that Caspian or his ancestors were Spanish: they were pirates, and could have been anything. So it’s not the same thing at all.

  8. “Caucasian” is a a broad term. There are people with olive complexions that fall under the term caucasian–like those from Italian, Greek, Spanish ancestry if we just speak of European ancestry. But I even saw a job demographic form that listed caucasian as anyone from European, Middle Eastern, and North African ancestry. So, a call for “caucasian” can have natural olive toned actors at the casting call. I also think films should stick to the way characters are described in the books. I hate how Hollywood changes characters’ looks, especially female characters that are described as not blond and fair.

  9. While Jennifer Lawrence may not have been my first choice, she is, at least, a young actress who has gained considerable praise for her ability to ACT. This is very far from a worse-case scenario. So I’m willing to wait and see.

    And while the whole race in Hollywood issue is important, I’m not sure Hunger Games — or at least, the casting of Katniss — is anywhere near as good a case as Airbender or (going a bit back here) 21. Unless they announce a blonde for Rue, and from Ross’ comments I don’t think they will.

  10. @Dan Wallace, thank you. It’s good to know that someone who does Star Wars gets it.

    Lawrence is a talented actress, and Katniss’s ethnicity could have gone either way. That being said, it was unfair that non-white actors with olive skin and dark hair were not given same opportunities to audition for the role of Katniss that white actors were.

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