In which I cast The Hunger Games

Have you caught the Hunger Games bug yet?  If you haven’t, you totally need to check out Suzanne Collins’ amazing Y.A. dystopic books.  That’s right, a dystopia and Y.A. can mix.   The third book in the trilogy, Mockingjay, will be out in August. 

In the mean time, I heard that casting for the Hunger Games movie is to begin in the Spring of 2010.  And I’ve been checking imdb obsessively to find out details. If anyone of any importance is reading, I have some suggestions for casting:

Katniss Everdeen:
Sarah Hyland. This Mila Kunis lookalike plays Haley on the sitcom Modern Family.  Truth be told, she’s on a sitcom and I have no idea if she’d be able to handle a meaty role like Katniss. But she definitely has the right look.

Gale Hawthorne:
Logan Huffman.  He plays Tyler on the show V.  Yes, I imagined someone a little darker than this pasty boy, but he and Sarah Hyland have looks that are alike enough that it’s believable they’d both be from The Seam in District 12. 

Peeta Mellark:
This is the one I feel most strongly about.  Hunter Parrish: If the past two seasons of Weeds has taught us anything, (besides the fact that I’m a way better mom than Nancy Botwin) it’s that Hunter Parrish actually has some acting chops.  His looks are perfect for Peeta – he’s meatier than Gale because as the baker’s son, he’s had the advantage of never going hungry.  And honestly, how handsome is he?  Though if you argue that he’s too old for the role, I couldn’t really disagree.

Primrose Everdeen:
Elle Fanning – because she looks delicate and frail. 

Effie Trinket:
Stick with me here.  Amy Adams.  I know, I know – she’s younger than we’re all assuming Effie is. I want Amy Adams to get out of her cutesy nice girl roles so badly.  I think the woman has serious acting skills and I want her to prove it by playing someone with an incredibly large stick up the ass.   My second runner up for the role?  Lisa Kudrow – and no.  I am not kidding. Effie is the one character we are kind of supposed to laugh at in the book.  Effie is the one shot the Hunger Games movie will have at providing even the tiniest bit of comic relief to a very sad serious and action-filled story.  

Haymitch Abernathy – Nick Nolte.  I mean, just look at his mugshot and tell me that’s not Haymitch.  My second runner up for the role?  Jeff Bridges.  The Dude. 

How ’bout it guys?  Any suggestions?  Disagreements?  I want to hear from other fans!

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About nikkihb

Wife. Mother. Reader. Blogger.
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22 Responses to In which I cast The Hunger Games

  1. Kristen says:

    I think you hit Haymitch and & Effie perfectly. I haven't seen your kids in anything, though, so I can't really say on those 4. I keep thinking of Katniss a little more along the lines of Eliza Dushku. But I'm mostly just excited for Mockingjay in August. Can. Not. Wait. Already preordered from Amazon.

  2. Sadako says:

    Haven't read this but I've heard such awesome things about the book I'm making a mental note to get it, and then come back, and read your post. Love casting books I've read…now if only it were that simple to do in real life.

  3. Rosaline says:

    These are great casting choices! I would never have considered Sarah Hyland for Katniss, but you're right — she certainly has the look. And Amy Adams for Effie Trinket is genius!SOOO super-excited for Mockingjay!

  4. My roommate is OBSESSED with Hunger Games. As in she almost cried when the cover got stained from a cookie-book mishap. I never even heard of them until she started reading them two or three months ago.I will definitely be reading them when I can!

  5. OMG, I LOOOOVE playing armchair casting director! I'm going to be doing a little of this in a future Unpro post, so stay tuned!Sarah Hyland has actually been on Broadway–she was young Jackie Bouvier in one of my favorite musicals, Grey Gardens. So I think she's got the chops. I myself pictured Ellen Page as Katniss, but she's really getting too old to play teenagers.Even though I'm not a fan of Weeds, Hunter Parrish is one of my chief celebrity crushes right now. I feel slightly dirty, but he's 23 and I'm 29, so that's not too gross, right? I think he'd make a great Peeta, although I wouldn't rule him out for Gale either.You're right, Amy Adams needs to play a meatier role (she came closer to that in Doubt, and she was fantastic). Alternatively, Lisa Kudrow could use the work–have you seen The Comeback? She really needs a better career, because she's awesome!Nick Nolte is totes a real-life Haymitch, but I could see them getting Jeff Bridges because he's on a hot streak right now. I didn't love Crazy Heart, but he was excellent in it.The Hunger Games rocked. I was a liiiiittle disappointed by the second book, but of course I will read Mockingjay and I'll definitely see the movie!

  6. nikki says:

    MIA02- Glad to hear Sarah Hyland can act. You never can tell with people on sitcoms. Hunter Parrish – God, I swoon over him, and I feel diiiirty because I'm (ahem) 32. And I usually go for the fellas with darker features, but there is just something about that kid. Loved Lisa Kudrow in The Comeback. Nick Nolte is exactly who I was picturing when I read Haymitch's role. I can't believe you were disappointed with the second book. It rocked my world – I practically shit myself at the end. I know I, at the very least, audibly gasped.

  7. No, the end was great and almost made up for some of the other stuff. I just felt like she recycled some of the plot points that made The Hunger Games so awesome: at least once, I was like, "oh, so we're going THERE again?"I'm also usually about the dark-haired dudes–but I wouldn't feel too dirty about the Hunter-lust. Think of it this way: at least we're not swooning over barely-legal (or is he legal yet?) Taylor Lautner. Who really does nothing for me.

  8. Molly says:

    OMG I HAVE TOTALLY BEEN DREAMCASTING THE MOVIE TOO. I'm insanely in love with the first book. anyway, my choices are as follows:Katniss: Liana Liberato. I know she's got the wrong coloring, but this little girl is a full-on badass. Dye her hair, throw in some contacts and call it a day. She has the heart and soul of Katniss Everdeen. Don't believe me, track down her first ever role, on the show The Inside. Jodelle Ferland would fit the physicality of the role more, though, and she's proven she has the chops for it. Though I prefer Liana Liberato, either would make me ecstatically happy.I'm familiar with Sarah Hyland's dramatic work going as far back as 1996 and…she's not that good. She may have improved since, though, I haven't seen her in much in a few years. I also think she just looks too old to play a teenager. Peeta: You're right, Hunter Parrish is perfect. I change my cast accordingly!Gale: Dominic Scott Kay (with some spray-on tanner, boy is PALE…doesn't look like an outdoorsman!) – though I'm not familiar with the guy you chose, he has the PERFECT look! Mrs. Everdeen: Emily MortimerPrim: Niamh Wilson Effie: I'm way with you on Amy Adams. She'd be perfect. Haymitch: Brendan Gleeson, but I can totally see Jeff Bridges now that you mention him!Cinna: John BarrowmanRue: Ashlyn Sanchez. This picture here is SO spot-on for how I pictured Rue: http://img256.imageshack.us/img256/6850/normaldsc00722.jpgMadge: Adair Tishler Avox Girl: Abigail Breslin. It's a tiny role, so I guess it's an odd choice, but a teenage girl who can act well without words…she's the only one who comes to mind. Glimmer: Madison DavenportFoxface: Dakota Blue RichardsThresh: Kevin G Schmidt (again, he's too old, but Thresh is meant to be massive…I think it could work.)Cato: Grant RosenmeyerClove: Ariel Winter Thinking about this too much?! What are you talking about?! 😉

  9. Molly says:

    OMG I HAVE TOTALLY BEEN DREAMCASTING THE MOVIE TOO. I'm insanely in love with the first book. anyway, my choices are as follows:Katniss: Liana Liberato. I know she's got the wrong coloring, but this little girl is a full-on badass. Dye her hair, throw in some contacts and call it a day. She has the heart and soul of Katniss Everdeen. Don't believe me, track down her first ever role, on the show The Inside. Jodelle Ferland would fit the physicality of the role more, though, and she's proven she has the chops for it. Though I prefer Liana Liberato, either would make me ecstatically happy.I'm familiar with Sarah Hyland's dramatic work going as far back as 1996 and…she's not that good. She may have improved since, though, I haven't seen her in much in a few years. I also think she just looks too old to play a teenager. Peeta: You're right, Hunter Parrish is perfect. I change my cast accordingly!Gale: Dominic Scott Kay (with some spray-on tanner, boy is PALE…doesn't look like an outdoorsman!) – though I'm not familiar with the guy you chose, he has the PERFECT look! Mrs. Everdeen: Emily MortimerPrim: Niamh Wilson Effie: I'm way with you on Amy Adams. She'd be perfect. Haymitch: Brendan Gleeson, but I can totally see Jeff Bridges now that you mention him!Cinna: John BarrowmanRue: Ashlyn Sanchez. This picture here is SO spot-on for how I pictured Rue: http://img256.imageshack.us/img256/6850/normaldsc00722.jpgMadge: Adair Tishler Avox Girl: Abigail Breslin. It's a tiny role, so I guess it's an odd choice, but a teenage girl who can act well without words…she's the only one who comes to mind. Glimmer: Madison DavenportFoxface: Dakota Blue RichardsThresh: Kevin G Schmidt (again, he's too old, but Thresh is meant to be massive…I think it could work.)Cato: Grant RosenmeyerClove: Ariel Winter Thinking about this too much?! What are you talking about?! 😉

  10. ali says:

    I think your choices for Haymitch are spot on. I could definitely see either of them in the part. As for the kids, I'm really not familiar with any of them though when I saw the picture of Elle Fanning I thought she looked perfect. That isn't really how I picture Peeta but I'm willing to go with it. I also really don't see Amy Adams as Effie. Lisa Kudrow, maybe… Now you've got me thinking about this!I have to say, I'm not totally thrilled at the prospect of a Hunger Games movie although I love that Suzanne Collins is writing it. Even though it's delayed Mockingjay.

  11. nikki says:

    Moly – I'm not familiar with most of the actors you listed. BUT JOHN BARROWMAN AS CINNA!!!!! YES YES YES A THOUSAND TIMES YES!

  12. Ryan J says:

    Good call on Haymitch. I've actually been pondering the whole casting question since finishing Catching Fire. I just don't know many of the younger actors anymore to fill the leads. It seems like now if you want a young actor it's get me that kid from High School Musical or that kid from Twilight. I think unknowns are probably the safest call (see Harry Pottter for example) as they won't have well known past performances to hinder the audience's perceptions.

  13. Elle Fanning is a fantastic actress!!!! I recently saw 'Phoebe In Wonderland', and she was AMAZING!!!! She gave such a powerful performance…

  14. Caroline says:

    I love the Hunger Games books and I cannot WAIT for Mockingjay. I am so firmly on Teem Peeta, I love all of these choices for him and Haymitch.

  15. Katie Fries says:

    I can TOTALLY see Lisa Kudrow as Effie! Now I'm going to be picturing this every time I read the books.

  16. Molly says:

    Nikki – just to fill you in in case you know them but just don't know the names – Jodelle Ferland is the go-to child for horror movies, probably best known for her triple-role in Silent Hill. Dominic Scott Kay is one of those actors who turns up in things every now and then, but not in major roles. He played an intersexed teenager on an episode of House last season and was awesome.Emily Mortimer won an Independent Spirit Award in 2003 for the film Lovely and Amazing. She has a huge resume, most recently including 30 Rock, Shutter Island and Lars and the Real Girl.Niamh Wilson was the detective's daughter in Saw III & IV (I think. I may have the numbers wrong; those movies are starting to run together for me.)Brendan Gleeson is another prolific actor, but he's probably most recognizable for playing Mad-Eye Moody in the Harry Potter series.Ashlyn Sanchez played John Leguizamo's daughter in the regrettable M Night Shyamalan movie "The Happening."Adair Tishler is on Heroes as Molly.Madison Davenport played Kit's friend Ruthie (uh, I think she was Ruthie; I can't remember just off the top of my head) in the Kit American Girl movie.Dakota Blue Richards played Lyra in the film adaptation of The Golden Compass.Kevin G Schmidt and Grant Rosenmeyer are also people you see all over the place in smaller roles. KGS might be best known for playing Noah on The Young and the Restless since 2008. GR is probably best known as the title character on the short-lived series Oliver Beene a while back.Ariel Winter plays the younger daughter on Modern Family. Though you probably knew that since you picked Sarah Hyland for Katniss! 🙂

  17. Anonymous says:

    I heard about a great suggestion for haymitch – Kevin Costner? Anybody? He's exactly how I imagined Haymitch.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Love Nick Nolte &/or Jeff Daniels as Haymitch! Although I think he should only be in his early 40's. But that is exacty how I picture him. I just hope that they don't cast anyone from Twillight.

  19. Anonymous says:

    haymitch sould be the guy from iron man and i think gale and peeta is wrong and katniss look like the person except i think it should be nini dovreva

  20. Anonymous says:

    Nick Notle needs to be Boggs the bodyguard in mocking jay but I found Posy Kaitlyn Maher

  21. Anonymous says:

    I meant Posy should be Kaitlyn Maher

  22. I'm not sure about Sarah Hyland for Katniss. You're right in that it would depend on her ability to tackle that role.I'm really interested in Haymitch's character, though. Jeff Bridges never even crossed my mind but now that you mentioned the Big Lebowski, that could work if they could make him look a little younger (Haymitch is only 40 in the first book). Someone also mentioned Sean Bean, who I think would also make a great Haymitch. Both Bridges and Bean can play a character who you like, but still want to slap sometimes; one whose bad grooming and alcoholism have diminished, but not destroyed, his good looks.I heard people mention Hugh Laurie and Robert Downey Jr. for Haymitch, but I don't think either would work. The main reason is automatic character association. For example, I can't see Laurie without seeing his character House; so instead of seeing Haymitch on screen with Katniss and Peeta, I'd just see House, M.D. Same thing for Downey with Iron Man (just not as bad as Laurie). I also don't think Laurie looks at all Haymitch. Laurie is too thin (no paunch from the booze), he looks a little too old, and there aren't any remnants of a youthful beauty.Anyway, I hope TPTB don't just cast a bunch of big name actors instead of focusing on the actual characters. They need to spend as much of their funds on the special effects as they can, not throw the money away to get big names.

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