Sufficiently Teased. Like REALLY REALLY WELL TEASED.

Every week, a new tease to enjoy on our road to November 21. Yesterday we got a cool poster of our long-awaited favorite, OUR LEADER THE MOCKINGJAY.

Turn around...

Turn around…

It was just of her back, which is yet again a huge tease, cause we would love to see our heroine’s actual face sometime in the near future. But there was a lot of great symbolism that you could draw from her body position, and the poster itself.

Along with the poster we were teased that Our Leader the Mockingjay would return on Wednesday, September 10 with something new. Rejoice!

People were overjoyed thinking it meant that the trailer would be revealed on that day. But one day later, now there is doubt and rumor and uncertainty again. It seems pretty clear going through the various social networks.

The fans are so tired, Katniss.

Movie marketing is all about the tease. You can’t reveal too much or people complain. You reveal too little and people complain. There is a very delicate balance. And fans can only take so much teasing before they get really angry or stop believing all together.

Today I was bemoaning the use of the word “soon” to talk about when things were coming because “soon” is so open to personal interpretation. I know we all wish we had more concrete details on what to expect so we could prepare sufficiently. What we do know – something new will be revealed on Wednesday. It’s extremely likely to be Katniss related (YAY KATNISS REMEMBER WE LOVE HER?).

But it’s also likely that what happens on Wednesday will be a tease for something else down the road, so it’s best we brace ourselves for continued emotional turmoil. It seems to be the theme around here.

I think Katniss would be a really good Batman, btw.

JJ

 

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Behind The Mockingjay (Literally)

*blinks* Did we… did we just get Punk’d?

Starting late yesterday evening, international distributors started hinting that something would be happening today. It was something, all right, but not something that was saw coming by any means!

Namely, it was this:

Katniss-Poster-376x580

KATNISS!

Sort of. We can’t confirm that it’s Jennifer Lawrence and not a body double, but we’d like to believe it’s our leading lady.

Still, we don’t know how we feel about this.

If this poster was released three months ago, it would have been OUR JAM! Katniss’ Mockingjay suit is GOR-GE-OUS and fierce and breaks our hearts into a thousand little Cinna shaped pieces. Are feather shoulder pads going to be a new fashion statement? We hope so! The poster continues with the wonderful theme of Katniss going against the grain– She looks right when everyone looks left in The Hunger Games posters, then stands when everyone else sits in Catching Fire posters. Facing away from the camera is also a nice metaphor for her reclusive nature and even more extreme struggles with PTSD in Part 1.

But it’s not June. It’s September. At this point in the game, we at least want to see Katniss’ anxiety and haunting memories and reluctant strength on her face. Build-up and anticipation is great in the right doses, but we’re overdosing on that anticipation over here!

There’s a reason Apple products advertise a program called Face Time and not Back-of-the-Skull Time (besides the fact that it would be really uncomfortable to keep twisting your arm behind your head to get a proper shot): All humans speak the language of facial expressions, the eyes are the window to the soul, aaaaaand so on! Katniss’ soul is being denied its window, dammit! FREE KATNISS!

But with the poster reveal also came the notification to expect something on September 10th! THERE’S MOOOOOAR! We’re hoping we can finally get more than yet another tease at that time, but we have no clue. As long as it’s not a “Katniss turns around” poster six days later because we would legitimately just start weeping in frustration at the point.

“I’m So Tired, Katniss”
The Girl With The Pearl

The Big Question

Here we are friends, in September, 79 days until Mockingjay Part 1 is in theaters. And it seems we are still haunted by a big question. That thing, top of every fan’s mind right now. You know what it is.

where is the trailer

The question has been so prevalent for so long throughout the fandom that we can recognize it in multiple languages.

The Brazilian distributor gets asked it so often they even do joke tweets about it.

It’s like April/May/June/July all over again when we asked repeatedly that same question.

If you want a little diversion, look at the latest rebel posters and imagine each of the characters are responding to being asked that question repeatedly.Gale is just kind of smug and silently concerned about your sanity. Boggs disdainfully thinks you’re an idiot for asking. Cressida has no time for you and your petty fan problems. Messalla is startled and a little scared to be asked. Castor looks fierce and defensive about it, and Pollux a little sadly dismayed at the situation.

I know we’re all tired of asking/thinking/reading the question. Tired of that question being the focal point of everything. But there’s a reason WHY it’s the question that won’t go away.

  • Trailers are important.
  • The teaser trailer was very much just a tease.
  • There is still no full length theatrical trailer, or a release date for it.

Yesterday, when this was tweeted, I smiled to myself and thought, they just set everyone up to ask the trailer question perfectly.

 

Check out the replies and you’ll see that is exactly what happened. Though pretty much every tweet from that account gets random “Trailer?” responses, this one seemed tailor made for it. Was this like a therapy exercise allowing fans to just vent one more time with the trailer question? Or is there some kind of office pool to see how many trailer related replies they can get to a tweet? (If not,  it could be a good way to deal with the stress of always being asked about the trailer.)

When we ask “where is the trailer?” we really mean “when is the trailer?” And the only hopeful thing we can tell ourselves is “soon” because time marches on we know it’s an inevitability considering the November 21, 2014 release. But even if “soon” is still a few weeks away, it would be nice to know the date for the trailer release now. Fans could do countdowns and build buzz and excitement for it that way. And it would allow that particular question to finally STOP.

I bet we’ll have an answer to “Where is the Katniss poster?” first though.

JJ

When Camera Crews Go Renegade

So we’ve definitely settled on the fact that the new posters are cool. Not perfect, but pretty damn cool. Still, there’s one isty-bitsy teeny-weeny fairly obvious detail that is driving us crazy…

Since when does a two-man camera crew, their director, and her assistant = BADASS WARRIOR MOTHERFUCKERS?

Observe!
Rebels_Messalla2

Rebels_Cressida2

Rebels_Castor2

Rebels_Pollux2

Mind you, we like the idea of badass warrior motherfuckers in general. BWMFs, if you will. But in comparison, we must admit this feels kinda forced.

While some tactical gear and even the small side guns on Castor and Pollux seem reasonable, check out the massive weapons Cressida and Messalla are sporting. That is meant for once thing: Taking out large numbers of enemies in a relatively short time period. Those are for straight up soldiers, not the people hired to film soldiers.

Meanwhile, Pollux is described as “the silent soldier” and Messalla, who seems skittish at best all the way up to his brutal end in the books, is called “the fearless renegade”. Seriously, somebody had way too much fun misappropriating these character descriptions while scripting this film!

In my initial commentary on these posters, I mentioned that Cressida and Messalla didn’t look much like Capitol defectors who, despite not agreeing with political choices, were still culturally Capitol at their core. The more we think about it… What if the filmmakers found it easier to not have them be Capitol defectors at all? The District 13 area doesn’t have many recognizable faces other than Boggs in the books, especially in what will be considered Part 1 territory. Audiences will connect with the District 8 scenes more if they see who Katniss is fighting with and what they stand for, so why not take already recognizable names and match them up with the mostly unrecognizable soldiers?

Yet we hesitate to wholeheartedly accept that theory. There is value to Cressida and Messalla being wet-behind-the-ears rebellion propo makers who don’t fully understand the dangers and implications of their work until they experience it firsthand. Their Capitol origins show that not everyone in the city is a drone supporting Snow and display tensions within the fragile alliances. Yes, it would be nice to have another kickass chick in the mix and Effie will be more firmly taking on the role of “Capitol lady who doesn’t truly get it”, but are there not shades of gray that can distinguish characters adjusting to the same situation differently as Cressida gets more and more proactive?

Maybe we’re just opposed to change.. but usually we’re not opposed to change when it seems reasonable and justifiable. We just don’t get why this group now has to be fierce soldiers. We’re hoping this pans out into something spectacular that we aren’t seeing yet, but right now, we must admit that we’re a liiiiiiittle weary!

If Camera Crews Are Now Super Soliders, Are The Original District 13 Soldiers Like.. X-Men?
The Girl With The Pearl

Gale Hawthorne– Blue Steel

So, this happened.

Rebels_Gale2

Along with that we also got the other equally as anticipated for character posters. The Girl With The Pearl, and JJ both covered this topic, but they didn’t cover this topic. Liam Hemsworth has one facial expression. You can take that one of two ways, that I’m poking fun at him, or that he’s got to make the best impression on casting directors– because if they paid more attention to his ability to express emotions with his face alone– he’d have to do a whole lot more than chat, or say lines, or whatever the hell those crazy kids are doing in casting rooms now.

In all seriousness, look at the evidence.

Exhibit A. Remarkable that he hasn't aged as well.

Exhibit: A. Remarkable that he hasn’t aged as well.

I don’t know about you, but to me that looks like the same expression he has in the character poster! Maybe I’m being overly critical, because there’s been so very little promotional material of real circumstance for this film as of yet. Yeah, we’ve got the tie-in propos, we got the teaser trailer, but we’re only now getting in character representations of new and old favorites– it feels a little stagnated. And then we get a patented Hemsy Blue Steel expression.

Exhibit B. Same every time.

Exhibit: B. Same every time.

Exhibit Do I Really Have to Say C?

Exhibit: Do I Really Have to Say C?

I feel like we’ve been hoodwinked a little bit, ’cause seriously! That’s the same friggin’ facial expression! True, it’s the same person in all of these photos, but isn’t he supposed to be expressing something else? Capitol Portrait Gale looks a little like he’s holding down a sneeze, I’ll give him that much! But the rest, even the examples of Liam not playing a character other than himself, those are undeniably similar to uncannily similar facial expressions. I’ll throw Liam one bone, ’cause I know I haven’t been that nice to him today. He’s much better outside of still photographs, granted he’s done his fair share of modeling, and he is without a doubt a very handsome young man, but his acting ability is not in his Blue Steel, it’s in his presence on screen, his entire body in movement, acting opposite other people– or with a better director off to the side giving him feedback. Stills are not his game, it’s just unfortunate, or fortunate depending upon how you look at the world, that the world at large’s first impression of Commando Gale looks about as annoyed as he might if his mom asked him to take out the trash. 

Until next time– this has been Them There Eyes with her wacky point of view on a piece of still photography.

Getting Excited for Hunger Games 3 with the Hunger Games 2 Image

As we Hunger Games fans scrounge around for any news about our beloved Mockingjay, we got a few more bread crumbs in the October edition of Empire magazine.

Empire Mag

Yes! News about Hunger Games 3! Wait. Are you new, Empire?

Well, not really. But using Hunger Games and then a number is a big pet peeve of fans. Granted, the official title of the film, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 is a REALLY long title. You can’t expect THAT to be used all the time. And Mockingjay by itself doesn’t mean much if you’re not familiar with the books. I don’t mind the use of Hunger Games on the cover. It’s the main brand of the stories/films. But right next to it they put Exodus: Gods and Kings.  Would it really have been so hard to find a way for Hunger Games: Mockingjay to work?

The naming issue wasn’t the only thing to irk fans though. The BIGGER wound is that they use A STILL FROM CATCHING FIRE on the cover. What happened here? Seeing above the use of Hunger Games 3, Empire is trying to remind people quickly about this movie.  So Hunger Games AND the lead – Katniss.  If they had used one of the Coin/Plutarch stills from May this could have confused non-fans. Beyond that, THIS IS THE COVER. YOU PUT THE STAR ON THE COVER. And the only still of Katniss in Mockingjay that has been released yet is the one from Entertainment Weekly’s Fall Movie Preview.  Did EW still have exclusive rights to it and that’s why you’ve got good ol’ Quarter Quell Training Katniss here? And since the article inside is just a short tease with very little new information, I guess we shouldn’t expect much on the cover either. But it stings that they used a still from the prior movie to promote Mockingjay in the October edition of their magazine. If it were a January edition promoting the whole year’s movies, ok that’s totally understandable.  There’s still 10 months to go. But for an October magazine of a movie opening in November, it’s just mind-boggling. What is going on here?

Which leads into the whole “where is Katniss?” refrain that’s been floating throughout the fandom all summer. The main two themes in the fandom for months have been “where is the trailer?” followed closely by “Is Katniss even in this movie?” Now that we’ve gotten a character poster of pretty much every main player except Katniss, we know it’s coming soon.  Though it seems I’ve been writing about “soon” since March, so we must always be careful to keep those expectations in check.

Fans are left to wonder at what the strategy was here – is this attempt to be REAAALY in-universe and have us pretend that Katniss is dead? But we all know she isn’t because Beetee told us that in early July. And if you’re completely out of it you’ve still seen her for a few seconds in the teaser trailer showing us that yes, indeed, THE MOCKINGJAY LIVES. How long is this game supposed to last?

Or does this no-Katniss approach have nothing to do with the storyline of the in-universe marketing at all? Rather, maybe it’s an attempt to keep the suspense by revealing as little as possible about the thing people want the most? Then, finally in October through November bombard the world with Katniss everywhere?  All we can do is speculate and hope that it happens before the November magazines come out.

No more Hunger Games 2 stills please.

JJ

District 13 Rebel Reaction

IT’S MOCKINGJAY PART 1 Posterama! We got six brand spankin’ new posters of what will be Star Squad 451 minus Finnick, Peeta, and Katniss; our first official look at the crew in their gear.

And OF COURSE we’ve got lots of feelings we need to share about all this! BEHOLD!

Rebels_Gale2

Oh, Hemsy! Your eyebrow game is just through the roof in this poster. We just want to brush them methodically for you (as we assume someone else did shortly before this picture was taken.) But we don’t love this image nearly as much as we should.

Book!Gale most certainly had some rage at this point in the story line. Yes, he’s finally made it to the rebels, but Katniss still describes him as intensity and fire when all is said and done. WHERE IS THAT? We all know Liam has epic emo face, but what about the other faces?! This is stern, at best. We want RAAAAAGE! He pulled that off much better in the Catching Fire character poster.

Rebels_Cressida2

Dammit, Natalie Dormer! Even in 1,000 layers including various padding, you still look glam! The last time we tried to look fancy, we still looked worth than that. URGH!

We’ve also discovered the new game we’ll be playing through the rest of the Mockingjay Part 1 promotional period: What exactly is the proper brightness of Cressida’s tattoo? It looked much darker and less green in the trailer, but it might have just been the lighting?

Rebels_Boggs2

YES! THIS! THIS FOREVER AND EVER!

If you can’t tell, we really like this poster! The image alone justifies Mahershala Ali’s casting as Boggs. Intimidating but serene, focused and powerful. The kind of guy who seems serious but has a solid sense of humor underneath it all. He definitely comes off as a leader and we are officially excited!

Rebels_Messalla2

Is it just us or was anyone else thinking Messalla had more of a Capitol flare?

Yes, he’s relocated to District 13, joined the rebellion, and probably toned down has look a bit. But still, we expected more than a bridge piercing and a line tattooed on the bottom lip. That modifications aren’t as “Oh so Capitol!” as we’d expected and despite not believing in the government, Messalla was still culturally Capitol. In the book, he stood out much more drastically. Why change that here?

Rebels_Castor2

When… When did one of the camera guys get kinda sexy?

We understand why it was easier to make Castor and Pollux brothers instead of twins… even though it kills the whole Greek mythology reference but WHATEVS. Still, aren’t these guys the “insects”, the background characters that have their special moments but mostly kinda blend in? How are we supposed to focus on military strategy and political strife when there’s lean muscle and faux hawks in our faces?!

Rebels_Pollux2

Not sure how we feel about ponytail and beard combo, but we’ll let this one slide because its FULTON REED (aka Elden Henson). Pollux is a former Avox and admittedly, the styling choices give the character the look of someone who’s been worn down after seeing too many horrors in the world. Also, you can see their “insect” camera bags really well in this one ad we’re digging it!


Everyone’s Worried About Katniss and I’m like “BUT WHERE IS FINNICK?!”

The Girl With The Pearl

POSTERS! Tough Scary Sexy Badass Mockingjay Posters!

That’s right; seemingly out of nowhere more character posters have arrived!  This time they’re of the field team – Gale, Cressida, Boggs, Messalla, Castor, and Pollux all in their gear with the Mockingjay symbol behind them.

So tough. So menacing. So dark. Just the right tone, we’d say.

rebel collage

We’ve got to digest on them a bit so we’ll have more on them later, but enjoy!

Katniss is next? KATNISS IS NEXT.

JJ

The Hunger Games Cast and Emmy-Worthy TV

Tonight is the Emmy Awards, celebrating “the best in television.” The Emmys can be frustrating because the voters have a tendency to give the same shows and actors awards year after year.  Will this behavior continue this year? Probably. But some our favorite actors from the Hunger Games movies are on shows that are being recognized. Which means they know how to repeatedly pick good projects, or maybe good projects are smart enough to pick them. Ok, both.

true detectiveWoody Harrelson is nominated for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series for his work on True Detective. He plays a ….detective (shocking, I know) working on a very horrific case and dealing with a lot of personal demons as well. Meaty stuff that Emmy voters love, however he faces stiff competition from his fellow detective played by Matthew McConaughey, whose character was so odd it probably gives him an advantage that could lead him halfway to an EGOT. There’s also Breaking Bad’s Bryan Cranston, who  is really awesome and has won several times before in this role, and tonight is his last shot to win again for the role of Walter White. So who will win? Don’t even try to guess.

Though not nominated himself, House of Cards with Mahershala Ali (Boggs) is nominated for Outstanding Drama Series. The show is also up for lead actor, actress, directing, writing, and basically everything. It got a lot of nominations. People love this show because you can watch it all weekend and and still feel like it was a good use of your weekend.

Boardwalk Empire also received a couple nominations. Jeffrey Wright plays a quiet but utterly menacing gangster on this show about Prohibition-era Atlantic City. Boardwalk does an amazing job at recreating the time and place with the gorgeous costumes and sets too. The violence is pretty traumatizing, but I suppose that’s the point.

If you haven’t seen any of these shows, it could be a nice use of the Mockingjay down time. (And the final season of Boardwalk Empire starts September 7!)

Remember what they say about JUST being nominated.

JJ

 

THG on TNT

While everyone has been busy with the very worthy cause of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge (I’ll be doing mine soon!), some other exciting new has come our way… At least in America.

The Hunger Games is FINALLY coming to cable television!

Consider it the marriage of two fiery ring logos!

Consider it the marriage of two fiery ring logos!

After a predictable deal to air the series on ABC Family– the teen-friendly network that brings us the awesome joy of Harry Potter weekends– seems to have gone sour, cable television rights to The Hunger Games series (and the Divergent films) have gone to TNT.

TNT, for those who don’t know, is the “We know drama” network. They play a lot of syndicated and sometimes original shows and films that pride themselves on being high tension and action-packed. Only one of their original shows, SouthLAnd, was really worth its salt in our book, but they do well enough off the syndication to get solid ratings.

The Hunger Games is a surprising choice for TNT, whose shows seem to be geared toward the 40+ crowd. In comparison to a lot of their shows, The Hunger Games series is pretty light despite the death and political undertones. It’s less tedious and dull than their regular offerings, too, which offer up some action but not enough to make you really care.

Aaaaaand because ABC Family would probably cut moments like this.

Aaaaaand because ABC Family would probably cut moments like this.

But TNT ain’t no fools! YA sells big and will likely improve ratings by a landslide. Any network with a brain would capitalize on the franchise the way ABC Family has with Harry Potter and FX has with the Marvel superhero franchise. You know why? Because when a Harry Potter or Marvel marathon comes on cable TV during a lazy Sunday, PEOPLE WATCH ‘EM. A lot more people than your average episode of The Last Ship or another Law & Order re-run.

Of course, marathons are going to take some time because each movie will be introduced on a yearly basis beginning in Winter 2015. Not quite sure how it works in foreign nations, but it typically takes 3 years for a major film to hit a regular ol’ television network… We think that’s WAY TOO LONG, but what do we know? This schedule keeps things on par.

And will we waste numerous hours sitting around watching The Hunger Games and its follow-ups on television because they just happened to be on while we were unoccupied?
…Yes. Yes, we will.

Even Though We Have The DVD And Can Watch Without 8,000 Commercials At Any Time,
The Girl With The Pearl

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