Mockingjay

Here’s Effie. Kind of.

Today, another image from Tim Palen’s upcoming bookTIM PALEN: Photographs from the Hunger Games, was released via Entertainment Weekly. This time, we got a look at District 13-era Effie.

effie-trinket

Wait, is that even Effie? Of course we recognize her from the inventive use of the bandana and some signature accessories she was able to swipe on her way out of the Capitol, but her face looks a bit different. Maybe it’s that Effie dug heavily into the makeup stash used during Katniss’s first failed Mockingjay transformation. Or maybe someone went a little Photoshop happy.

The photograph itself is quite lovely, and the posing very much in Effie’s character. I suppose if we imagine that Effie commissioned this piece and wanted her face to have all that extra…work to make the “best impression” possible, then, ok, we get it.

Really though, we think someone just really enjoys using Photoshop.

JJ

Reshoots, Toastbabies, and ALL THE EMOTIONS

On this day when we celebrate the birth of Katniss Everdeen, we got some hints about the Mockingjay Part 2 reshoots thanks to casting call announcements slated for filming June 6-8 in Atlanta.  Looks like they need to film a 6-9 month old baby, a brunette aged 35-50, and Boggs and Plutarch doubles?

tumblr_mjod2atg4k1qbnazvo6_250

What??? Why Boggs and Plutarch? Feel free to disagree and give your thoughts on these guys, but here’s the casting call for those two:

BALD DOUBLE
Seeking African American Male
Dark Skinned and MUST be Bald
6’2 and 215 lbs
Subject: BALD DOUBLE

BLONDE DOUBLE
Caucasian Male / Blonde Hair
5’10” / 48 Jacket / Waist 46
Doesn’t need to be exact but closest match
Subject: BLONDE DOUBLE

Our speculation is that the Boggs double is needed for a quick reshoot of something they missed when filming his scenes last year, so it’s unrelated to the epilogue.  The blond male I speculated as Plutarch because of the 46″ waist. That’s a bit of a mystery too, but again they might need a body double to add in to some shots due to the death of Philip Seymour Hoffman. Or it could be Haymitch has put on a little more weight as he gets older. Or it’s just a random guy walking around town.

The other stuff though, clearly says EPILOGUE TIME. And it’s nice to have a date to speculate around. We knew it was coming, but now we know when!

It’s Katniss’s birthday, and we got some presents of hope.

JJ

Ranting and Raving

Time keeps marching on and still no news on the Mockingjay Part 2 front. None. At all. If you’d like to hear me and some of our friends at Jabberjays.net be baffled by this, you can listen to the latest Jabbercast, “Age of Ranting.” Laugh, cry, get angry, laugh some more. It’s therapeutic.

What else? What else?

Well, tonight, Jennifer Lawrence is co-hosting the Met Gala in NYC. ($25,000 a ticket). Here she is in some fabulous Capitol Couture (er- Dior).

Jennifer looking gorgeous.

Jennifer looking gorgeous.

Elizabeth Banks was there too, being on-point with the fashion herself. Yay, more pretty pictures!

image

Yep, that’s pretty much it. 

JJ

Reserve the Right to Be Impatient

Last night at CinemaCon, Francis Lawrence gave a couple quick interviews to Collider and MTV about Mockingjay Part 2. There’s some nice tidbits about the upcoming Epilogue filming, the current cut of the film’s length, and his plans to attend the Hunger Games Exhibition opening and Comic Con.

That’s some good stuff to get fans excited for this summer. When asked about when we would see the first footage from Part 2 he said he didn’t know (because honestly he doesn’t control the timing of these releases).  He also said that fans should “practice patience” because it hasn’t been that long since Part 1 came out.

We totally understand Francis being annoyed about fans harassing him on Twitter about a trailer because as he said, while he has input into the creation of the trailer, he does not control the release of them. Or other facets of the movie’s marketing plan. So stop bugging him (and Nina) about those things, please.

But the thing about being patient for teases of the movie… sorry, but NO. NO WE DO NOT ACCEPT. WE ARE PROUDLY IMPATIENT.

i am super chillAnd we don’t think anyone involved in the movies should want us to become more patient. Listen, die-hard fans WANT news and teases of the thing they love. It’s normal. IT’S A PART OF OUR DNA AS HUGE FANS. It’s what differentiates huge fans from casual fans who just watch the movies but don’t really pay attention to trailers or other things along the way. The day we become patient is the day Lionsgate should get seriously concerned. Because casual fans show up whenever and once. We show up first and often. We talk repeatedly about what we love and drag our friends and family along. We get hyped and make it contagious.

It’s the end of April and within the context of movie marketing, we are not unreasonable to expect some things now. Stills, a new poster, a teaser trailer. Yes, these are all reasonable things to expect. The Hunger Games movies are huge – they deserve blockbuster-level hype and attention. If blockbusters such as Star Wars (opening Dec 2015) and Batman v Superman  (Opening March 2016) can release stills and teasers already, yes, we’re going to expect the same for Mockingjay Part 2 now. We see you at this level. YOU CAN DELIVER TO THIS LEVEL.

As fans, we do our part by getting excited when STUFF IS RELEASED. The day we sit patiently for it is the day we stop caring for it to come at all. Don’t play that game of chicken with us. We certainly don’t want to play.

We just want to enjoy all we can of the time that’s left.

JJ

The Fire Will Burn… Out?

Plutarch: May I speak freely?

Coin: You don’t appear to do anything else.

Plutarch: I’m only talking about salesmanship. The thing with revolutions, they’re a tender flame. They need to be nurtured with a little kindling. And warmth. A bit of oxygen. One sure way to put it out is to smother it.

We all know this exchange from Mockingjay Part 1 and it feels fitting for the state of the Hunger Games fandom. It’s depressing right now, with the desperate back and forth speculation about when a trailer will be released. Yes, 7 months out from release (and 11 months from the end of filming) it’s high time for a teaser trailer to debut. But perhaps even worse than no trailer news is THERE’S NO OTHER NEWS ABOUT PART 2.

Today's "Secret Message" word of the day. Hope it doesn't strain you too much to figure out.

Today’s “Secret Message” word of the day. Hope it doesn’t strain you too much to figure out.

The Hunger Games social media accounts seem to spend most of their energy promoting Willow Shields on Dancing With the Stars, and while we love Willow, can we all agree that this does not count as Mockingjay Part 2 promotion? Sure dress her up in a red fire dress to dance to Atlas. That’s a fun call back to THE PREVIOUS FILMS that makes us smile, but it isn’t really getting us hyped for the upcoming one.

Starting this Wednesday, a graphic has been released daily with a “secret message” for us to uncover, the first three being “THE FIRE WILL” and the fandom seems pretty assured it’s the tagline on the Mockingjay Part 2 logo poster, THE FIRE WILL BURN FOREVER.

But, will it though? Will it “burn” even through this last installment, or will our beloved franchise go out with a whimper? Last year, when we were stuck in the “no news” black hole, we speculated that it was because The Hunger Games franchise had reached “Cash Cow” status for Lionsgate and so they were going even more lean than usual on promotion. We don’t know what they spent on marketing Mockingjay Part 1, but we can all agree that from a fan perspective, it was definitely leaner.  Sure, Part 1 suffered from some “two parter” backlash and an overall weak year at the movies in 2014, but the opening weekend being down more than 20%? That means you didn’t create the same urgency from fans too.

One would think that kind of drop would indeed motivate a stronger push this year, THE FINAL YEAR. GO OUT WITH AN INFERNO! We know now that the trailers for Mockingjay Part 1 were delayed because a lot of the District 8 footage was shot at the tail end of filming in May/June. What’s the reason for the dearth of news this year? We hope it ends soon. Maybe this “secret message” will lead us to some Part 2 goodies and there will be joy again in the fandom. We are completely ready to keep the fire burning, but it’s hard to maintain excitement when we keep waiting… and then there’s nothing to feed it.

In need of some kindling, warmth, and oxygen, STAT.

JJ

Getting Trailer Twitchy

560x829xfirst-poster-692x1024.jpg.pagespeed.ic.88GNMkj7CVWe’re getting closer and closer to the time when we all assume there will be a Mockingjay Part 2 teaser trailer.  (Basically we’re assuming it comes out the week of April 20th and yes we know that’s a dangerous game considering the unpredictability of last year). We’re going to keep the faith and hope it happens anyway.

Of course, in this fandom, the teaser trailer itself must be teased, so by our math this means –

STUFF NEXT WEEK. PLEASE LET THERE BE STUFF NEXT WEEK. WE NEED SOMETHING!

What stuff? Well, since we learned our lesson last year about expecting too much too early we’re not even gonna go there with a wish list. We just hope that a teaser trailer release date is announced next week. Maybe a little gif/quick video tease/still. Oh shit, we started a wish list. Stopping now. Please at least just announce it next week. Yes, that will give us something to look forward to in the days ahead.

But of course, if Lionsgate would be so kind as to relaunch Hunger Games Explorer with some new content, that’d be even sweeter. (Ugh, MUST STOP THE WISH LIST).

In the meantime, we’ll be here, waiting for the cool stuff to go down.

Let’s get the positive vibes going.

JJ

Creating a Fun-Filled Panem, in Dubai?

There were lots of funny pranks pulled throughout the fandom last week in celebration of April Fools, however there was one legit piece of news that was real, but it ALMOST sounded like a joke.  The Hunger Games Theme Park Attraction – It’s happening. In Dubai.

dubaiWhen the news came out on March 31, we knew it wasn’t a joke, because Lionsgate executives have said on multiple occasions that they were exploring opportunities to add the Hunger Games as a theme park attraction. It will be a part of a larger Hollywood theme park, Motiongate Dubai. According to the press release, it will “feature state-of-the-art theme park attractions and a retail facility inspired by … The Hunger Games franchise.” Not much in the way of details beyond that were released, other than it would be located in Dubai and another Lionsgate movie property, Step Up, will also be a part of the attractions when it opens in October 2016.

We’ve been very wary of this theme park idea all along and nothing about the announcement has changed our perspective on it. The Hunger Games costume exhibitions and the upcoming touring Exhibition starting this summer in New York have focused on showing how the books have been turned into movies. They’re basically extensions of the behind the scenes goodies of a Blu-ray, and we like that. The word “theme park attraction” invites broader world-building that could be problematic if not handled with care. So what are they going to do? Will this be some amped up version of the Samsung-sponsored Comic Con event last year, complete with Capitol Gallery and a Capitolized Peeta’s Bakery? District 12 themed rides? An arena?????

Ok, we need to stop thinking of the possibilities cause this is just getting dark and we’re probably just thinking of the worst possible scenarios. After all, remember this passage from The Hunger Games when Katniss is about to enter the arena?

Arenas

They wouldn’t do that, right? No. No, they couldn’t. THEY WOULD NOT DO THAT. True, these books/movies are just stories, so if they created an arena attraction no one would have truly died there. But it would definitely be creepy and way too “Capitol” for us to fathom.

Even if they don’t make the “attraction” an arena, placed in the context of the super-wealth of Dubai, there’s a lot of ways for this to be way too Capitol for our tastes. But then again, us three American women of Victor’s Village are clearly not the intended visitors for this attraction. I spent a week in Dubai in 2011, and while it was a fascinating experience, I’m certainly not taking that long of a journey again simply to go to a theme park when there are plenty of other places still to visit in the big, beautiful world. The Hunger Games attractions will draw in people who live closer to the geographic area, people who were planning to visit Dubai anyway for the larger theme park experience, or people visiting to gawk at the fabulous buildings and ski slope inside a mall.

We just hope they keep the story’s themes top of mind when putting this all together, otherwise it’s going to be really awkward and gross.

We really don’t want this to get awkward and gross.

JJ

Those MTV Movie Award Shenanigans

It’s that time of the year again, when the people at MTV try to annoy the crap out of fandoms by having social voting for those magical internet ponies (you might just call them awards). You can vote for various ponies on their website. But every year they do some kind of social vote award too. Last year they made the “Best Hero” category something you voted for just on their website (and Katniss was left out of that in lieu of more traditional male action hero types). We remember being really annoyed about that. The fandom even started a petition about it, which was nice, but ultimately ineffective.

Like Gale, we're sitting this one out.

Like Gale, we’re sitting this one out.

But yes, last year their “social vote” category was “Best Character” and the two main contenders were beloved YA heroines. It wrecked havoc on our social feeds for over a week, and if you followed the voting on the day of the awards, the huge voting comeback for the character with the actress actually attending the awards was quite amazing. Pretty much unbelievable actually. MTV even overtly helped that along by keeping voting open long after their own communicated deadline. So in the end, all the time the fandom spent clogging every timeline was for naught. And we learned not to bother and spend our time doing more enjoyable things.

This year, here we go again. Although MTV has made the social vote category for “Best Hero” and actually including our dear Katniss Everdeen this time. Gee, thanks a lot for including her this time. How generous of you. Also included are the two other big YA book to movie characters, whose fandoms really love to vote for the internet ponies. And also Bilbo Baggins and Starlord, whose fandoms seem less inclined to care.

We get the purpose of these shows – they’re one big ad for movies and MTV. And MTV wants to award the actors and actresses who are willing to attend to promote movies and MTV. If you want to devote yourself to voting, go for it. We love Katniss too, so we can’t blame anyone for wanting to sing her praises everywhere. But please, don’t take the results too hard and realize that there are other agendas at play in all these games.

Jen Can't Eat The Award

Katniss won’t hold it against you – she doesn’t have any use for golden popcorn either.

JJ

Commence (The Final, Final?) Blond Josh Watch

The fandom had a quick, yet fun, freakout this weekend because of a picture from the In Dubious Battle set (where Josh is currently filming).

In dubious battle set

fake blond joshDon’t see it? Look beyond all the people in costume towards the person in the plaid shirt.

Is Josh Hutcherson blond again?!?! Epilogue time!!!

Well, no, more like blond Josh doppelganger, unfortunately. But thanks for freaking us out, guy we don’t know.

Now, it doesn’t make sense for Josh, who’s been seen in period attire and his natural brown hair on Friday to just suddenly pop up in the middle of set platinum blond. I mean, I suppose the set hairstylists could be trusted to do a first round of the Peeta blond before sending him off to film any of that final epilogue-y goodness. But I think we all know it’s too soon for that. Jen is also still in the middle of filming Joy as well.

So even if we’re crazy impatient, it is not quite time yet. We need to be a bit more into deep spring. That meadow needs more time to be in full growth.

You can’t blame the fandom for having a momentary freakout though. Josh is known to favor the “plaid + sunglasses” casual uniform. Observe the Google Image search results.

josh plaid

This was a good drill though. Get ready for the final blond Josh meltdown. Cause while it won’t be this week, it’s coming.

Unless it doesn’t and he just wears a wig or something ;(

JJ

May The Force Be Ever In Francis Lawrence’s Favor

Today we’re talking about a big, unconfirmed rumor that could be a load of bunk, BUT WE LOVE THIS RUMOR SO MUCH THAT WE DON’T CARE.

According to StarWarsTime.com (which appears to be a Star Wars fansite), Francis Lawrence “is being sought to write and direct” Star Wars Episode IX. The site doesn’t list the source, so as we say, it could be completely untrue, but it got our pulses racing at the possibilities.

Francis Lawrence on Mockingjay set

Why? Because we LOVE what Francis Lawrence did with Catching Fire and Mockingjay Part 1. He respects source material, hires great people, and seems to have great working relationships with his cast and crew.  He knows how to world build yet doesn’t over-use CGI. It also doesn’t hurt that he deals with the demands of crazy fans well too. That’s a pretty important quality if you’re taking on Star Wars.

Even if he doesn’t end up taking on this job, we’re excited to see what Francis does next. Well, I guess that’s technically Mockingjay Part 2, SO WE’RE ACTUALLY REALLY INSANELY EXCITED ABOUT THAT. But we’ll be in line to see whatever comes after that too.

Go get, ’em F-Lawless

JJ