The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is fast approaching its fall start date, so the main priority of new director Francis Lawrence is to finish casting the sequel. There are a few major new roles that have elicited casting talks: Finnick Odair, Plutarch Heavensbee, and Johanna Mason. Regarding Johanna, the buzzworthy Mia Wasikowska was linked to the role last week along with newcomer Zoe Aggeliki. Alas, EW reports that Wasikowska is not in talks and could not actually fit the shoot into her busy schedule anyway. But EW adds a nice replacement candidate, Jena Malone, to the list.
To be safe, I’ll keep the description of the role after the jump. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire opens on November 22, 2013.
First, a vague book synopsis to give you time to turn back:
Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has won the annual Hunger Games with fellow district tribute Peeta Mellark. But it was a victory won by defiance of the Capitol and their harsh rules. Katniss and Peeta should be happy. After all, they have just won for themselves and their families a life of safety and plenty. But there are rumors of rebellion among the subjects, and Katniss and Peeta, to their horror, are the faces of that rebellion. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge. [Amazon]
The Capitol’s “revenge” is to call back past tributes—including Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta (Josh Hutcherson)—for the next Hunger Games. Johanna and Finnick are fellow Hunger Games winners who are called back into the fold. Johanna is from District 7, and one of the youngest tributes in the new Games. Johanna’s tactic is to feign weakness, but Katniss quickly susses out Johanna’s “wicked ability to murder.” Basically, if you haven’t met her yet in the books, you’ll love her in the movies. Malone is a solid choice, though I’m curious to learn more about Ms. Aggeliki. This is still just a list of candidates, so this will probably not be the last name you hear linked to the role.