Director Gary Ross Says CATCHING FIRE Won’t Be 3D; Explains Why 3D Isn’t Appropriate for THE HUNGER GAMES Universe

     March 14, 2012


Director Gary Ross’s adaptation of The Hunger Games opens next week, and early tracking numbers have the film poised to surpass The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1’s opening weekend. This thing is tracking like a sequel, so naturally the follow-up Catching Fire is all but guaranteed at this point. Simon Beaufoy was already writing the script for the sequel in January, and Ross is confirmed to return should the film get the green light (it will). Early buzz on The Hunger Games has been very positive, and many are noting Ross’ atypical approach to the camera work in the film. There are apparently a lot of close-ups and handheld shots, bringing a grounded and realistic feel to the tentpole pic. The director recently spoke a bit about Catching Fire, saying that he would never consider 3D for The Hunger Games franchise. Hit the jump to find out why.

jennifer-lawrence-catching-fireRoss sat down with Josh Horowitz at MTV and talked briefly about his approach to Catching Fire. Since it’s early, he obviously doesn’t have much to say, but he did note that he has ideas of how Catching Fire will differ cinematically from The Hunger Games. Furthermore, Ross outright stated that he would never consider 3D for the series:

“No, absolutely not, no [I wouldn’t consider 3D for Catching Fire]. I don’t think it’s appropriate for this film. I think that if we shoot this movie in 3D, we become the Capitol; we start making spectacle out of something that I don’t think is really appropriate here. There needs to be an aesthetic distance because of the nature of the material, the premise, what they’re doing. I think that cinematic techniques designed to intensify the experience if you feel them that way, aren’t really appropriate. I mean I love 3D, I really do and I think it’s a wonderful tool, I just don’t think it’s the right tool for this.”

jennifer-lawrence-elizabeth-banks-hunger-games-imageThe director certainly has some great motivations behind his decision to nix the prospect of 3D. It’s obvious he approached the franchise carefully, not wanting to turn The Hunger Games into a clean, stylized version of the book. If you’re unfamiliar with the story, the Capitol is where the ruling government in The Hunger Games is housed, and the lives of those who live in the Capitol are driven by the importance of appearance and style. As a fan of the books, it’s encouraging to hear that Ross didn’t take a surface-level approach to his adaptation; he genuinely values the underlying themes of The Hunger Games and hopefully that translates to his film iteration.

Jennifer Lawrence previously stated that filming on Catching Fire is expected to start this fall, with a good deal of the production taking place in Hawaii. You can watch Ross’ conversation with MTV regarding Catching Fire below, but beware of spoilers for The Hunger Games if you’re unfamiliar with the books. If you missed them, be sure to check out our interviews with Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth, Elizabeth Banks, Lenny Kravitz and Wes Bentley, Alexander Ludwig, Isabelle Fuhrman and Amandla Stenberg, Donald Sutherland and producer Nina Jacobson.


  • Keube

    While I appreciate Gary Ross’s dedication to the “feel” of the film, I have to wonder, wouldn’t 3d bring about the immersion that one experiences from reading a book in first person present tense (like the Hunger Games)? The third dimension is all about making the viewer feel as if they are inside the world of the film which is what the book manages to accomplish by putting the reader inside Katniss’ head. Besides, 3d doesn’t have to be for everyone as one can choose to watch 3d movies at 2d cinemas.

    • O.R.

      The thing is that the films are supposed to represent the distancing of the event (kids murdering each other in real time) from its mindless viewers who seek only instant gratification. 3D would really make it more like being in the arena, but I get a feeling that’s not what Ross is aiming for.

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  • JandS

    “No, absolutely not, no…”

    That felt REALLY good to read.

  • Jim

    Spielberg felt the same way about using color, crane shots etc in Schindler’s List. It’s not good to beautify some things.

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  • Joester

    3D sucks. Don’t ruin one of my series as 3D.

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