The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is scheduled to shoot this fall for release on November 22, 2013. Now that director Francis Lawrence is on board and a polished screenplay is in place, it’s time for Lionsgate to finish casting the sequel. The main focus has fallen on the rumor-friendly heartthrob role Finnick Odair, but as of this writing, there’s still nothing solid on that front. Instead, we’ll turn to Plutarch Heavensbee. It’s a relatively small part in the second book, but to give you an idea of how crucial the character may be, Deadline hears Lionsgate offered the role to Philip Seymour Hoffman. Hoffman may not accept the offer (and my gut says he won’t), but I appreciate Lionsgate’s continued effort to cast the hell out of the supporting roles in this franchise.
The description of the role arguably spoils a twist that could surprise those who haven’t read the book, so I posted it after the jump just in case.
First, here is 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]
Plutarch is the new Head Gamemaker (i.e. designer and manager of the Hunger Games) in Catching Fire, replacing the recently poisoned Seneca Crane. So yes, the next movie will focus on another iteration of the Hunger Games, even if it’s not immediately clear how our District 12 protagonists (Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson) will factor into another contest. Hoffman would be great, able to pull off both the authoritative dignity and the sly duplicity of the character, and certainly capable of carrying some of the heavier dramatic weight of the third book, Mockingjay.