Cameras are rolling on the hotly anticipated Hunger Games follow-up, Catching Fire. Director Francis Lawrence (Water For Elephants) has taken over from Gary Ross and traded the forest for sun, sea and sand. The upcoming Games are being filmed in Hawaii, matching the description in the book of an exotic jungle environment.
Pulling the strings this time is game-maker Plutarch Heavensbee, played by Philip Seymour Hoffman, and the contestants will feature familiar faces, including Sucker Punch’s Jena Malone as axe-wielding Johanna Mason and Smallville’s Alan Ritchson as career tribute Gloss. Here is our wishlist for the 75th Hunger Games…
Avoid ropey CGI. Francis Lawrence knows better than most how CGI can date a film faster than a deadly virus (remember those zombies in I Am Legend?). There’s going to be more ‘muttations’ in the sequel, which will hopefully benefit from a bigger budget.
Less Cloverfield-cam. The last film was guilty of giving viewers motion sickness, so try steadying Gary Ross’ shaky cam and show us some of the violence depicted in the books. We know Katniss doesn’t aim for the gut; it’s the throat and temples.
Take us on a tour of Panem. Readers know the depths of Suzanne Collins’ world, but the first film didn’t show us much beyond a few funny-looking costumes. Tell us more about their histories, particularly the significant Districts 2 and 8.
Give us more Gale. The other Hemsworth brother is in danger of being forgotten as a part of the love triangle. This angle needs to be played up more since he has an important future role.
Flesh out the supporting cast. So far, Haymitch (Woody Harrelson) is a slurring scruff and Cinna (Lenny Kravitz) is a too-touchy-feely stylist. Let us learn more about the supporting cast and their past so we worry about their well-being in this lawless dystopia.
Aaand Action! Don’t spend too much time recapping events like the book, and head straight for the action. After all, one of the most talked-about scenes from film one was the cornucopia bloodbath.
What would you like to see (or not see) in the sequel? Leave a comment below!