Thursday, September 2, 2010
Prepare to start hearing a lot more about the film adaptation of the bestselling Young Adult series The Hunger Games from now on. The third book in the series, Mockingjay, was released last week and was the cause of many an all nighter by avid fans. It went on to sell upwards of 300,000 copies in its first week which is, in any language, a massive success. I have yet to read the final book, thanks mostly to being a tight arse who would rather pay $6 for a copy from The Book Depository and wait than shell out $20.00 in Australian stores for a paperback copy. Before I make myself sound like I don't support authors or the industry, which I actually work in, I buy a hell of a lot of books, like more books than I can actually read, and sometimes I even pay the full price in bookstores; BUT so I can afford other luxuries, such as eating and keeping the electricity turned on, I do tend to opt for cheaper books.
Now back to the point of this; the film adaptation, and quite possibly the most important casting of a female book to film lead since Twilight (okay so perhaps the US remake of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo deserves a mention, but it all smells a bit too much like Dan Brown for me to be interested, so I shall simply specify the casting of a YA book to film). How do you cast someone that readers have come to love over the last 3 years? How do you capture the spirit of the character and the physical descriptions? With Bella in Twilight the character was created to be the every girl, so readers could imagine themselves in her place; being fawned over by two "hot" studs, apparently. The problem with The Hunger Games is that Katniss Everdeen is not your ordinary girl, and most readers probably wouldn't want to be in her shoes, apart from the token love triangle; Gale and Peeta in this instance; the boy she has grown up with, and the boy that she goes into the Hunger Games with. Whoever ends up playing Katniss will need to be strong minded, athletic, independent, kick ass... okay that was an easy segue.
Next up we have everyone's favourite actress working today, the real life of the party; and the Miss Congeniality award goes to... Kristen Stewart! Okay, seriously, that Stewart's name is even mentioned is ridiculous. One teen franchise per person, don't be a hog, "let the other girls have their chance to exhibit..." as Mr Bennet would say. The funny thing is, and it's funny to me because I think Stewart is an extremely poor actress, had Stewart not taken the role of Bella in Twilight and had she been offered the role of Katniss in The Hunger Games I might just like the old cow, yes, I think Kristen Stewart could play this role well, I just don't think she should. I also think Stewart is a bit over the teen films by now, as shown by her role in Welcome to the Rileys, a.k.a Bella wears tape over her nipples.
Other names flying around are Alexandra Daddario (Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lighting Thief), Kaya Scodelario (Skins, soon to be in Wuthering Heights), Camilla Belle (take your pick of mediocre film titles), Willa Holland (The O.C., Gossip Girl) ... and basically any female actress who can pull of a teenager and has a bit of ethnicity in her appearance.
So, who do I think should play Katniss Everdeen? Well, as with many, I'm pulling for the unknown card. And who knows, maybe after Rooney Mara was cast as Lisbeth Sanders, the Hollywood casting gurus will follow suit with this film. Then there's the casting of Gale and Peeta... insert two hot, young, up and coming studs - I have a feeling this isn't too far from the truth.