Looks like the film adaptation of Hunger Games will hit American multiplexes before the long-purported U.S. remake of kindred spirit Battle Royale. Earlier today, The Wrap exclusively reported that sources close to the Lionsgate production of Suzanne Collins’ 2008 sci-fi/political thriller confirmed Winter’s Bone darling Jennifer Lawrence has been cast in the lead role of Katniss Everdeen. Short of an official studio announcement, or non-rumored addition to Lawrence’s IMDB page, the news seems all but declarable, although there is no concrete release date for Games as of yet.
This is the first piece of major casting news to surround the picture, which is preparing for headline- and box-office domination over the next several years (assuming Hunger performs well enough to warrant big-screen treatment for its sequels, Catching Fire and Mockingjay).
For the not-yet enthralled, Collins’ trilogy surrounds the nefarious doings of a post-apocalyptic government who stage televised death matches between children—with mutated animals and other graphic fantasy elements thrown in for further nerd-stoking pleasure.
And for Lawrence, Hunger represents an interesting next step in her post-Oscar trajectory, one that could cement her as a contemporary Ellen Ripley-meets-John Connor, or simply land her in a support group for blockbuster-franchise hostages with Kristen Stewart.