Gary Ross Talks About Casting The Hunger Games
Posted 12.19.10 by Ryan
Since Gary Ross was announced as the director of the adaptation of Suzanne Collins' best-selling novel The Hunger Games, fans have speculated on how Ross would cast the movie. While Ross didn't reveal that he had cast anyone for the lead role of Katniss, the book's main protagonist, the Seabiscuit director told EW that he is gearing up to cast the role.
I’ve talked to Suzanne extensively and I feel like I understand the character really, really well. I feel like I know who that girl needs to be. I’ve read in the press that there are frontrunners but that’s not the case. We’ll cast the right person for the part. Lionsgate has been great in the respect that they don’t feel that this needs a movie star in Katniss’ role. The greatest thing about the franchise and the books being the star is that we can cast whoever we want. So we all feel like we’re just going to cast the right person.
Ross admitted that he wasn't sure if he would cast an unknown in the role, but said he wouldn't cast an actress simply because of her popularity or beauty.
I don’t think that’s the main criterion for Katniss. What makes Katniss attractive is her strength and her assuredness and her defiance and ultimately her compassion. And I don’t mean just physical strength. I mean a real strength as a human being. She knows her own truth. She feels deeply and fiercely. And this is something that the actress has to bring with her.
Ross promises that the Hunger Games cast will be revealed "very soon", but stated that "It would be wrong I think to announce it before we’ve actually cast them or spoken to them."
Collins and screenwriter Billy Ray (State of Play) adapted the screenplay, which follows teenagers who have to fight to the death in a reality TV-style arena. Production will begin in late spring 2011.