The rumors that Lionsgate had whittled down a list of actors to play Finnick Odair in the upcoming ‘The Hunger Games’ sequel, ‘Catching Fire’ seemed so logical that it had to be true. But now, the producer of the movie, Nina Jacobson, has come forward to squash the continuing reports that an offer was going to be made soon to someone on that list and that a short list even existed.
If you recall, last week E! Online had stated that a “source” had told them that the studio was looking at 3 actors to play the role of Odair: Taylor Kitsch, Garrett Hedlund, and Armie Hammer. Soon after, Kitsch sent an e-mail simply saying ‘Not going to happen.’ That left Hedlund and Hammer in the running. Now Nina Jacobson, a producer on ‘Catching Fire’ has come forward to say all the reports, whispers, and speculations about a short list are untrue.
Speaking to L.A. Times, Jacobson, on the red carpet at the MTV Movie Awards, had said “That’s the thing that’s crazy — people are like way ahead of where we are. We’ve not narrowed things down by any means. It’s funny to see how things can take on a life of their own.”
So even if there really wasn’t a short list, Jacobson was asked if the fans’ response to a particular actor for the role would influence the studio’s decision:
“It means something that people can see [an actor] in that light, so you know [the actor] will be accepted by a lot of people, on the one hand. On the other hand, you have to kind of ignore it. You have to just sort of act like you’re sitting in a room and you want to just pick the person who gives the best audition and looks and feels most like the part.”
With ‘The Hunger Games‘ reaching $645 million at the box office worldwide, it’s understandable that the producers will take their time to consider each actor who will be added to the film. Odair is a significant role in the film and one treasured by fans of the second book. Jacobson and her fellow producers are aware they will have to choose carefully. “That’s pressure,” Jacobson acknowledged with a smile. “But it’s a good kind of pressure.”
I’m sure we’ll find out who will get the part of Odair soon as production is slated to begin in the fall.
‘Catching Fire’ is scheduled to hit theaters on November 22, 2013.