Lionsgate have officially announced release dates for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part One and Part Two. They fall on November 21st, 2014 and November 20th, 2015. With The Hunger Games: Catching Fire set for November 22nd, 2013, they’ve essentially staked out the Thanksgiving holiday for three years in a row.
It’s debatable that Mockingjay needs two feature length films to make the adaptation work, but this is becoming “a thing” now, after both the Harry Potter and Twilight series saw their final instalments split too. Seems you’re not a YA lit sensation until you’ve been adapted into one more film than you had books in the first place.
Another official announcement has it that Phillip Seymour Hoffman has indeed joined the cast of Catching Fire, and inevitably the two Mockingjay pictures also, as Plutarch Heavensbee, the new chief gamesmaker. He’s going to be mighty busy for some years to come, but I’m sure he’ll be enjoying the new houses/swimming pools/lines of squealing fans for even longer.
There’s been no official announcement about the Johanna Mason role just yet, but The Hollywood Reporter believe it’s gone to Jena Malone. It’s a good role, and will be better still when that necessary PG-13 rating curbs the need for nudity as described in the book – well, I say better. More comfortable.
And here’s the official title treatment for Catching Fire, from the film’s Facebook page.
It came with this plot blurb:
In the thrilling sequel THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE, Katniss Everdeen and fellow tribute Peeta Mellark have barely returned home after winning the 74th Annual Hunger Games when they are whisked away once again by the Capitol. Forced to leave her family and best friend Gale, Katniss is dispatched on a victory tour of Panem with Peeta, where rebellion is seething in all 12 districts. The Capitol is enraged and ready to strike back . . . as President Snow prepares the most diabolical edition of the Hunger Games yet.
I’ll be absolutely shocked if Comic-Con passes without some kind of Hunger Games presence. I’ll be keeping eyes and ears peeled.