Sometimes, the best way to really review something is to gather ’round and discuss it! Which means it’s time for another Victor’s Village reaction post!
We’re laying it all down and getting a little crazy as we recount our latest Catching Fire binge! These posts get quite long, so look for most of it under a cut!
SCENES THAT SHALL NOT BE SEEN (EXCEPT ON DVD EXTRAS)
TGWTP: Let’s start with the deleted scenes, shall we? Which was your favorite?
JJ: Finnick with the Knots, no question for me.
Them There Eyes: It’s a toss between the Mockingjay scene with Snow and Plutarch, or the knot tying scene with Finnick and Katniss.
TGWTP: I’m torn on that one. I like the Finnick scene, but I get why it wasn’t used. The Mockingjay speech? I was like “WHY IS THIS NOT IN THE MOVIE?”
Them There Eyes: Both would have added a little bit more brevity, and a little more background to characters, and the story in general.
JJ: Yes, I think the sugar cube scene made the knot scene unnecessary. But I still loved it.
Them There Eyes: Yeah, but we like seeing more Finnick, it makes us happy in all kinds of places! Got that Sam? WE LIKE YOU!
TGWTP: CLEARLY. I mean, they essentially created a Best Shirtless MTV Movie Award for Sam Claflin. And Liam Hemsworth’s brother.
Them There Eyes: Truth be told… I pay no attention to MTV except to Josh Horowitz, ’cause he’s funny, and has slumber parties with Tom Hiddleston.
SWITCHING IT UP
TGWTP: The other scenes were cool but they just didn’t have any beef behind them (other than Liam Hemsworth… BAZINGA!)
JJ: You had to.
Them There Eyes: Can we do winky faces on this, or will I be smitted?
TGWTP: OH, winky faces are totally in!
Them There Eyes: Honestly though, the Plutarch switches the envelopes scene made no sense to me… granted I had just watched all the other blu-ray extras, so I was a little bit bleary, and confused by life in general… But… that one took me a bit to get.
JJ: I agree, the Plutarch envelope scene was just confusing. And long. You can see why they cut it.
Them There Eyes: Yes…. and also emotional. But for completely unintentional reasons.
TGWTP: It’s a theory in the book that the envelopes are switched. But considering that the pre-planned Quarter Quell envelopes are never expressly explained to movie audiences to begin with, it didn’t make sense to keep it in.
JJ: And really, do you need it emphasized that this was all a plot to kill the victors? No. But yes, all PSH scenes are loaded with extra meaning now. That was a really tough thing about watching the movie again.
TGWTP: And watching him talk about making the movie. I loved the “making of” documentary, but that definitely added some bittersweetness in there.
Them There Eyes: Yep, I hate to think that any scene with Philip Seymour Hoffman is now considered superfluous, but at least we know that the film makers were very focused on getting background information to the audience, even if it did turn out to be unusable.
WE’LL TAKE ALL THE STUFF, PLZKTHX
TGWTP: Speaking of background, what did you guys think of SURVIVING THE GAME? Did you learn anything super new and interesting there?
Them There Eyes: Not new per se, but interesting!
JJ: The fun thing was seeing all the behind-the-scene video
TGWTP: YES. I particularly loved Josh and Sam dance-fighting like they were straight out of West Side Story
JJ: So cute! And of course the famous pants splitting engagement scene.
Them There Eyes: Wait, which one was surviving the game? The nine part thing? So confused… ’cause there’s the three part extras on the Target Blu-Ray edition.
TGWTP: There was. And some of it is the same, but there’s much more in the full documentary
Them There Eyes: If it wasn’t clear yet… THE TARGET BLU-RAY EDITION HAS EVERYTHING… and a kitchen sink.
JJ: Yes. Lots of stuff. Some of which overlapped. Not that I’m complaining about that. Give me more stuff
BRB, DISTRACTED BY A CHILD’S TOY
TGWTP: Any things you loved about the doc?
Them There Eyes: Ve Neil, Trish Summerville, Jo Willems, the artists who made pretty much everything except Jennifer Lawrence’s amazing stare down. And I want the head film editors editing bay in my life.
JJ: I love that they touch on so much of what went in to production. They covered a costume, makeup, SFX, music. So much. It just made me appreciate the work they did that much more.
TGWTP: MINI JEN was my homegirl! Obviously a minor detail, but I live for those. You guys are all serious and I’m like “Did you see that action figure?!”
JJ: LOL, I did mention the pants splitting before.
Them There Eyes: I literally paused the doc. during the makeup scenes, turned to my room mate, and said… I HAVE THOSE INSPIRE PICTURES ON MY CAPITOL PINTEREST!
TGWTP: So you and Ve Neill have the same Capitol inspirations?! Why don’t you work in film, darling?
Them There Eyes: Because I only have ideas, and no ability to execute them without complaining constantly.
TGWTP: Fair ‘nough.
I should be writing about how Jennifer Lawrence has lost at the two most recent awards shows she’s attended, and how awful that is, and “poor Jen!”– but I’m not going to, because sometimes it’s not all about Jennifer Lawrence. Yes, even though it’s pretty much been scientifically proven that she is in fact awesome. Nope, today I’m going to wax philosophic over how much I am in hard like with IMDb, and all the amazing little nuggets of information it gives forth when I am quite honestly strapped for article ideas, ’cause there are only so many pieces that can be written about how awesome Jen is. Which she is, we’ve covered that, Jeez!
Today I was perusing my crush object, AKA IMDb.com, reading through The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1′s full cast and crew list, because sometimes as proven in the past, there are nuggets of hidden information hiding in those lines of tiny, text. Like that time I found that Ripper had been cast and was for real in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, you’ll remember her, she was the woman Katniss helped during the raid aftermath at The Hob. However, this time around I spent an exorbitant amount of time looking at the technical and behind the scenes listings, searching out costumers names, and stunt people’s past and current projects, and then I found the name Francie Brown, and the annotation, “dialect coach: Mr. Cusack”. Now, I only know of one Mr. Cusack in the film business, I’m sure there are others, but most likely those Mr. Cusacks don’t require the employ of a dialect coach. So, if you’re on the same page as me, and I don’t mean webpage, I mean thought process, this particular Mr. Cusack is none other than John Cusack of Say Anything, Grosse Pointe Blank, Being John Malkovich, Serendipity (don’t lie, you saw it too!), High Fidelity, Anastasia, and about a million other known and semi known films– fame. I think I might be a little bit psychic, guys. Or, I don’t know what the hell is going on, but sometimes I have casting ideas that either do come true in full, or only in part. For instance I picked out Julianne Moore for Coin over 6 months before she was cast, I also secretly thought of Sam Claflin for Finnick a year before he was cast, I also thought that Stanley Tucci would have been a great President Snow way before he was cast in the role of Caesar Flickerman. Kind of glad he got Flickerman, actually.
Which brings me to Cusack being a rumored cast member, because I of course scrolled up on the page and saw that he was listed– but the pesky “rumored” annotation was there. Face it, if they’re hiring out a dialect coach for him though, and the said dialect coach is listed in the credits– I’m pretty damn sure he’s not a rumored cast member, but that he is one. And before anyone points out to me that anyone with an IMDb-pro account, can alter an IMDb page’s listings, the information that is more often than not altered, added, and retracted, is usually done by day-players trying to pad their resumes, not reputable dialect coaches who have been the coach to Christian Bale multiple times on multiple projects (like, all the Batman movies!)– she’s the real deal naysayers of the world. Almost a year ago in February I wrote this, an article fan-casting John and Joan Cusack in the roles of Boggs and Coin. Yep, so that didn’t happen, the casting of those specific actors in those specific roles that is, but John Cusack has magically shown up in the cast list for one of the Mockingjay films– and I’m just going to take that as a sign from the giant unicorn I worship, that something amazing is going on down at the casting offices for this film franchise.
Cusack is a boon– people, not quite as starry-eyed-amazing-and-shiny-fantastic as getting Hoffman, and Moore, but he comes with clout, and chops, and intelligence, and years, and years, and years of experience. There’s no information on what role he’s allegedly taken on, but judging from the whole dialect coach thing, I’m going to make an educated stab in the dark here, and say he’s playing someone from the Capitol– the only place in Panem with any discernible accent. However, if I had my way he’d be playing Doctor Aurelius, but unfortunately Aurelius is from District 13– an area of Panem that according to canon, has no noticeable accent. Cusack is a Name however, meaning his reputation precedes him, therefore I’ll posit that the role he’s allegedly taken is not a one liner– and that he’s going to pleasantly surprise us.
Let us wait and see! Until then, please check out The Paperboy– it’s one of those films that Cusack did that’s little known, but was seriously, seriously amazing in, Matthew McConaughey, Nicole Kidman, and Zac Efron are in it as well. It’s a veritable feast for the senses, no lie.
Them There Eyes
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire has been released all over the world for a couple of weeks now, and that means that the world at large’s head vision of Finnick Odair should be transforming into one Sam Claflin for the most part, right? Wrong! Sadly as the person who was the mouthpiece behind the totally-defunct-dead-as-a-door-nail-dead-dead-dead campaign to have Armie Hammer cast as Finnick– I’ve unfortunately been privy to people just not fucking giving up and not accepting the very talented, the totally worthy, and the super nice person that is Sam Claflin as Finnick Odair. As of yesterday the Tumblr titled Armie Hammer for Finnick Odair was still in existence, but that doesn’t mean it had been updated for over a year– and get this, I was daily getting multiple follower alerts for it. Not only was I getting them daily mind you, they actually, and dumb-foundingly started increasing once The Hunger Games: Catching Fire was released. Pretty weird, huh? I think so.
Guess what I did yesterday!? G’head, guess? Yep, I deleted that floundering sucker! Why? Because as I said above, it hadn’t been updated in probably about a year, and also I think it was kind of sad that people were still following it. Yeah, I said it– sad. I honestly thought that once Sam was cast that people would give up, that people would fall away, that the campaign would just out quietly, and that my dears is exactly why I lazed and didn’t delete the stupid, silly thing. Erm, also I had relinquished control of it to PeetaToast over on Tumblr sometime towards the end of the initial campaign, and thought maybe she would eventually step up and say or suggest, “shall I delete this very dead thing?” But that never happened, and the follow alerts kept pouring in to my inbox, and well– annoying me. Yeah, you could say I deleted the thing because it was more annoying than painful to be reminded that who I wanted to be cast was in fact not? But, well– yes, that is the case. Annoyance thy name is silly, sad people who cannot accept Sam Claflin as Finnick Ordair, ’cause, damn it all to hell people– I sure as hell have, and I don’t know why you bloody have not!
Hey you guys! You annoyed me enough to make me delete something I didn’t care about anymore! Now to ditch the Facebook page as well!
Them There Eyes
PS. I’m still a fan of Armie Hammer’s.
Now that we’ve all reveled in THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE several times, it’s time for Victor’s Village’s infamous reaction post!
For those of you who aren’t familiar with our reaction posts, our three admins in a chat get together and say anything and everything we feel about the topic at hand… and it gets pretty damn hilarious, if we do say so ourselves!
This post is also long, mostly hidden under the READ MORE cut, and contains ALL THE SPOILERS. Beware!
THE FIVE WORD CHALLENGE
The Girl With The Pearl: Since we made our readers answer this: Give an overall review in FIVE WORDS or less!
Them There Eyes: Not the Hunger Games, bitches. Sorry, was channeling Spike from Buffy.
Twiffidy: Oh no this is hard.
TGWTP: Mine is turning out to just be “Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat!” That could be taken several different ways.
Twiffidy: Spectacular with all the feels.
DRUNK HAYMITCH AND EFFIE’S ALIEN BABIES
TGWTP: And said feelings start with some MAJOR character development? Whose was your favorite?
Them There Eyes: I think everyone got an ample amount of character development, even Buttercup. But, I think I’m going to have to go with Effie!
Twiffidy: Effie for sure. I mean, they did finally say her name!
TGWTP: Buttercup was so very… orange! T’was lovely.
TGWTP: I agree Effie takes the cake. We finally get to see the pure Capitol in her that was downplayed before AND a more sensitive side!
Twiffidy: When it comes to Effie, I was relieved to see her humanized.
Them There Eyes: Effie crying was like watching an alien have a baby, and then you cry… because it had a baby.
TGWTP: Somehow, that description works. LOL
Them There Eyes: Okay, now we have to talk about how the joke could finally be made! “Go home Haymitch, you’re drunk.”
TGWTP: YES. He was ACTUALLY DRUNK.
Them There Eyes: Really drunk! I’ve never been so glad to see a man drunk before in my life!
Twiffidy: That entire scene like a slice out of my imagination when I read the books
Them There Eyes: I know! Right down to the bread, and the “burrrr!”
Twiffidy: He was the right amount of drunk from how the books describes without being too comical.
TGWTP: For sure! It’s a hard line to walk, but Woody knows what he’s doing.
Them There Eyes: Still made me wish for Drunk!Haymitch from THG, falling off the stage at the Reaping. I hope non book fans aren’t too surprised by his sudden change from social drinker to rubbing alcohol pilferer.
TGWTP: And you know what? Peeta was manned up! And it wasn’t some massive dissolution of his character like people made it out to be. Quelle surprise!
Them There Eyes: I know, just seemed like a boy grew up after he saw some pretty horrible things, and… also had his heart broken.
Twiffidy: Yes, it’s understated but that’s how it appeared to me. I’m a big fan of Peeta’s journey through this movie.
Them There Eyes: I loved Peeta, I had Peeta feels for days after seeing it… also sleep deprivation. People change, Peeta’s one of those people.
TGWTP: Peeta Mellark is the ninja-silent emo badass of Panem, though for good reason.
Twiffidy: It’s important to realize that this is the Peeta that Katniss will miss in Mockingjay.
TGWTP: URGH MOCKINGJAY. MY HEART IS NOT READY.
Them There Eyes: My body is.
Twiffidy: I almost involuntarily squeak out “No!” at that final look at Peeta as Katniss leaves with the wire. Every. Time.
TGWTP: I understand. It’s “Don’t do it, idiot! I know what happens and you don’t want that shit!”
Twiffidy: I’VE SEEN YOUR FUTURE AND IT IS BLEAK.
In order to score spots in the prestigious fan camp area of the Hunger Games: Catching Fire red carpet, I, along with the rest of the staff of Welcome to District 12, stayed two nights on Chick Hearn Ct. outside of the Nokia Theatre in LA Live.
Saturday started at 5:30AM, leaving early to make it to our 8:30 check in time with all of our stuff.
Our fansite friends, including fellow Victor’s Village staff members The Girl With The Pearl and Them There Eyes, arrived soon.
Good thing too since Willow Shields and Stephanie Leigh Schlund came to sign posters for fans.
There was also that Kindle Fire booth from the mall tour where we could take our pictures with Katniss.
After grabbing dinner, everyone took their camping chairs and blankets from the camping area to the square to watch the first Hunger Games movie. It was a pretty cool way to watch this movie we’ve seen so many times, considering it was a Saturday night and they were playing the movie in the midst of people heading to clubs and fancy restaurants.
The next day proved to be a big one, with even more Catching Fire people coming to sign posters for fans. We got to meet Sam Claflin, Jena Malone, Jeffrey Wright, Josh Hutcherson, and Francis Lawrence, who are all awesome.
Throughout the day, the KIIS FM booth ran contests and giveaways, even a scavenger hunt that cause a kid to run up to us frantically asking for a belt (we thought at first he was trying to sell us one). The day ended with a dinner with the fansite runners that was delicious and fun.
At 5 AM the next day, we were all woken up by security to pack up and vacate at 6AM so they could set up completely for the red carpet later that day. Overall, the weekend was a lot of fun, and I would definitely camp again. It was great to be with the fans and to bond with others excited about The Hunger Games.
We won’t talk about the movie! We won’t talk about the movie! Won’t talk about it! Won’t! But OH MY GOODNESS, WE WANT TO TALK ABOUT THE MOVIE. Some of you are seeing it right now (!!!!!!!!) and others are on their way to the theater soon, so we’ll keep our mouths zipped until then!
So let’s talk about something awesome, but also less spoiler-y. We attended the freaking Catching Fire premiere!
The title quote came from a teenage boy we encountered while walking from our hotel to Nokia LA Live, where Catching Fire Fan Camp was held, in our Victor’s Village t-shirts. We were less than a mile away, but apparently if you’re less than a few blocks away, you’re in an interesting section of town! Who knew? However, it may have been worth it for that quote!
Without getting into too much detail (because other VV writers will later), Fan Camp was a blast! I met both Them There Eyes and Twiffidy, along with several other fansite friends, for the very first time and all of them were incredibly fun! It feels so good to geek out with others who understand what it’s all about.
And then… PREMIERE DAY!
Let’s preface this by reminding everyone that I am from Boston. The city may get referred to as “Hollywood East” thanks to all the recent filming in the area, but what happened on November 18 felt just about as far from my hometown state-of-mind as I could get.
For starters, we had our own prep team! We headed to Capella Salon in Studio City, where Tate, Brendan, and Tina, the very talented friends of Amie and Sheila from HG Girl on Fire, made us premiere ready. It was all very Capitol, which I chose to embrace it for the day and just allow myself to get girly! Mostly because it’s kind of nice to have someone mold your unruly hair into perfection and then declare it “so Hunger Games.” I HAVE MY WEAKNESSES.
This was quickly followed by that dress I begged my fashionable friend to help me shop for before leaving and my killer red heels– No seriously, when I woke up to catch my flight home on Wednesday, I was pretty certain I would being losing my right foot in the name of the Catching Fire premiere.
We were asked to take part in the Yahoo! Catching Fire livestream, which seemed really cool even though we didn’t quite know what it entailed. Turns out not having your phone on the red carpet for security purposes and not knowing exactly where to meet Lionsgate reps to go on air don’t mix well, but after half-running around a building in said killer heels, we made it into the red carpet! There’s I proceeded to do the “I don’t know what to do with my hands” dance in front of an international audience at about the 7 minute mark. The questions were mostly what I expected them to be, which is pretty simplistic as to not be spoiler-filled. It’s hard not to look like a vapid fangirl when answering those types of questions, but we pulled it off okay!
SKIPPING THE MOVIE. Because because because I have to. I’m doing this for your own good!
The after party. It was something out of this world. Them There Eyes always says “If you’re going to go Capitol, GO CAPITOL.” Well, they listened. The party took place in a giant tent with the Mockingjay symbol lit up on top. The entrance was a red carpet surrounded by timpani drummers like those used during the Tribute Parade scene. Lights shined down and danced around the room. White roses floated in massive glass columns and lined the walls in fancy bouquets. For a better visual, check out this video!
I spent most of the after party gawking alongside Arianna and Aldrin of Down With The Capitol. At one point, we realized we were a few feet away from Francis Lawrence. We wanted to thank him, but there’s this funny thing in Hollywood where almost everyone but us had no real problem interrupting his previous conversation to grab him and start a new one. We literally stood two feet from Francis for about 20 minutes before getting a chance to say something without completely interrupting a previous conversation, which could have been with studio reps, for all we know. We thanked him for the what he did with the movie (we think we will too, once you see it!) and he seemed so genuinely pleased to hear we liked it, which was brilliant.
Also stopping to have a brief chat with Francis was Alan Ritchson. To confirm all your suspicions: Yes. He is, in fact, a real life Ken doll. It’s like he’s right out of Life-Size, guys!
We caught Bruno Gunn by the bar, where he was drinking water and I was drinking liquid courage. He talked to us about loving the books and why he chooses to be so active among the fans. It comes down to this: This man really recognizes what a wonderful, unique experience this is and he wants to delve into every moment of it. He was so enthusiastic about the fan base that it kind of blew my mind. It’s not something you see everyday.
Then we saw the crowd. There were two couches forming a circle and in the middle of it all, Sam Claflin. But not just Sam! He was accompanied by Stef Dawson, who will play Annie in the Mockingjay films! For the record, Stef is so small and adorable. She looks so young that I maaaaaay have mistaken her for some rich execs’ little daughter at first. Shhhhhh! But she was just about the sweetest thing ever and now we’re even more excited to see her in Mockingjay!
It took a lot of patience, but eventually we were able to snap a photo with them and talk. Poor Sam was obviously exhausted, but he handled the social aspects like a champ: Talking about the movie, giving love to the fanbase on behalf of the whole cast and telling us how bummed he was that we couldn’t meet the other leads (who were whisked away to promotional gigs on the other side of the country almost immediately after finishing with the red carpet). He joked about not being hot enough, to which Amie calmly replied “I’m going to give you a minute to take that back.” I admitted to him that some parts of the movie had me physically shaking (a bit embarrassing, in hindsight) and he cheered “Then we did our job!”
We know that celebrities are just people, but they’re people who don’t normally talk to me. So it was really freaking cool and also surprisingly intimidating, even though they’re all really nice.
We didn’t find out until after the fact that Suzanne Collins was also in attendance. From wherever you are reading this right now, you can probably hear our hearts breaking into a thousand tiny pieces. She’s the one person we REALLY need to thank, since she inspired all this from the very beginning. We think she already knows, though.
We get jaded about the fandom sometimes, we’ll admit it! It’s not perfect, for sure, but we are so damn lucky to be a part of it. Not just because of “perks” like these, but because the fansites were able to share it all together. This fandom has so many amazing people in it. Some of them are (semi) untouchable actors, sure. But some of them are you and I.
Thanks For Always Making This Worth It,
The Girl With The Pearl
P.S. There’s a couple more after party photos under the cut!
It’s official! We’re off to the US premiere of Catching Fire!
In the meantime, we’ve lined up some stellar guest posts for you to enjoy! First up is Emese, whose a little disturbed (and rightfully so) by a trend she’s noticed among members of The Hunger Games fandom on tumblr.
Take it away, Emese!
For an outsider Tumblr might seem like a pretty crazy place. And it is! It’s filled with all these gibberish text posts, shiny fan arts, RP-ers and regular bloggers, social activists and trolls, hipster blogs and cat picture blogs and food blogs and of course: fandom blogs.
You see, it’s never dull there. People always have a lot of ‘FEELS‘ to talk about, they use taglines like ‘AKFSJGSGADKHJGSDAFLJKSAFHKJSA‘ to express excitement, and have separate folders on their computers where they store all the GIF files they might use as reactions to a post.
Pretty graphics can be called ‘color porn‘ and ‘scenery porn‘ and ‘hair porn‘ without having any kind of adult content and the concept of ‘shipping‘ was completely re-defined by these folks and the general fandoms. It’s not just for your OTP (=One True Pairing) anymore, you can have as many ships as possible for one single person by ‘multishipping‘ them. You can ‘go down with a ship‘ even if it’s about two characters who only interacted that one single time. Heck, they might not even met! And sometimes you can ship two people without actually wanting them to get together, and call them your ‘brotp‘. Really, it’s gotten to a point where you can ship someone with an inanimate object without seeming like a weirdo.
Perhaps that’s why I don’t feel like twitching and screaming whenever I see a a photoset out there of two Hunger Games co-stars tagged as #i ship it. Because I know that that same person might just have a gifset reblogged of the Doctor and his screwdriver (no, that’s not an euphemism, pull your mind out of the gutter and start watching some Doctor Who! God!) with that same tagline.
Still, ‘real life shipping’ in itself is in fact an existing separate phenomenon and is something that we all encountered in our lives. It can be derived from people identifying actors with the characters they play, or just an idea to put two celebrities you like together. In many cases though, real life shipping is simply just an act of appreciation of an existing relationship between two people, whether it’s romantic or not. Unfortunately, that’s not where it all stops. It’s just where it all starts to get disturbing.
Like guys, there are fanfictions out there! Fanfictions! It’s crazy! Think about it, these are not fictional characters, these are real actual human beings who could possibly read those! But that’s not even the honest-to-God-real problem – I mean yeah, I feel pretty uneasy whenever I come across those writings, but I also know people who merely find them fun and entertaining in a totally-not-taking-this-seriously sense. What worries me more are these mile-long text posts I have to scroll through day-by-day, describing why X and Y are not really in love but X and Z are like meant to be together. Like look at those pictures the user just posted, they tell you everything you need to know! Obviously, the poster totally knows these peoples’ feelings much better than the people in question. “Seriously, X and Y need to break up, stat!” That’s like a legit thing to write on a public forum about two very real people who you know nothing about.
Again, we are talking about real people. Not fictional characters.
And guys trust me, I’m not making this up. These posts actually happen. In this fandom. And those posting them are absolutely serious about them. And people agree with them.
The question is, how is that better than any sort of shitty celebrity journalism making up crap about well-known public figures just to sell themselves? And even more so: how is that different from the Capitol’s obsession with Peeta and Katniss’ romance?
The answer is: it’s not. It’s actually worse. Because you’re a fan, and you should know better.
You see generally, this whole idea is not a new trend. People were obsessed with the personal life of their favorite stars 50 years ago as well; it’s why trashy magazines and celebrity journalism exist in the first place. Thanks to the internet however, there’s some rapid growth that happened on that front, which means more accessibility, more paparazzi pictures for the public and obviously much more intrusion into these people’s lives. It’s one of those disturbing points where the fictional world of the Capitol meets our present day entertainment industry.
Even so, sometimes I feel that while Tumblr is in many ways perpetuating that kind of behavior, occasionally it also adds some kind of fun spin to this whole craziness instead of embracing it. Again, we’re talking about fans here, and many of them might even understand the situation as a whole, and so they try to maintain a certain level of respect for their idols and their need for privacy. I personally feel like the Hunger Games fandom in general is very self-aware in that regard, especially since the books are full of criticism toward the subject.
That doesn’t mean though that I don’t feel uncomfortable whenever it happens in any way. Our cast is generally very private about their personal lives, and I feel that getting involved in their relationships like that is very disrespectful for them. There are parts of their lives that they choose to indulge us in, but there are also parts that they’re desperate to keep to themselves. And while enjoying a certain relationship that we get to see through channels that they choose to open, such as in interviews, is fine, I find that discussions above that are always problematic and very much Capitol-y.
I’m proud to say that most of the fandom – outside the madness that is social media – respects that. We might be aware of our cast members’ relationship statuses, but we do not talk about it – because they don’t. Unless of course it’s Sam Claflin’s adorable relationship with his wife, which we can unabashedly fawn over thanks to his openness about it.
I imagine of course that many of the weirdos who are taking this all to the extremes are either pre-teenage fangirls and boys, who haven’t yet thought over these issues, or people who might not even be actual fans of the books and movies themselves. Well, I’m here to tell you that your age is not necessarily an excuse to be a disrespectful prick to your own idols. Heck, I don’t even care if you’re not a Hunger Games fan: if you come into our party, you play by our rules.
Team Just Leave These Guys The Hell Alone A.K.A. Who Cares If It’s Real Or Not Real?
Ah, finally. Cast interviews and press tour goings-on have started trickling onto the Internet, and it’s been worth the wait. Already, we have some fairly hilarious videos. Not that I’m complaining, but when did junket interviews start including playing games? Here are a couple revelations from what we’ve seen so far.
1) Jena Malone and Sam Claflin are the other Dream Team.
We got our first taste of this during the Fansite Roundtable interview with the two of them, but that’s not just a one time thing. They seem to have fun during their interviews together and can play off each other well. It kind of makes you expect to see that off-screen chemistry to translate to an interesting dynamic on-screen. And we know that if Jennifer and Josh are understandably busy, they can at least send Sam and Jena to keep us entertained in their stead.
2) Interview games tend to include white boards and vague rules.
Here, write your answer on this white board! Why? I don’t know, just do it.
What’s the point of having teams if everyone is just showing their answer? It doesn’t matter, just go with it, it’s fun.
3. Francis Lawrence likes to talk a lot.
And thank heaven for that! For me, I like going into movies knowing very little, but Hunger Games fans are big worriers. Just hearing Francis Lawrence acknowledge some of our favorite, small moments from the book and indicating that those little things are in the movie gives me great hope, without completely ruining it. Describing Peeta’s touching speech in District 11 gave me a lot of feelings, and it’s nice to hear finally speak about Sam and Jena make the perfect Finnick and Johanna.
Is he a pirate? Is he flirting with Josh Horowitz? Either way, it’s great to hear from him.
4. And here’s the biggest revelation of all… The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is just around the corner! With interviews coming out, that’s the sure sign that we are almost there! Can you taste it?
Reduced to watching videos on my phone during breaks at work while coworkers look at me funny
Yesterday morning, Victor’s Village and a whole bunch of fansite friends got the chance to interview Sam Claflin and Jena Malone via phone!
If you’ve ever questioned these two in their roles, we can officially tell you not to worry about it. Sam Claflin is beyond charming. He talked about the love of his life so much that our hearts melted. Srsly quise, it was adorbs. And it was so very Finnick Odair! Jena Malone is small and cute, but there’s also a fierce passion in her that lets us know she’ll bring out the best (and by “best”, we may mean “worst”) parts of Johanna Mason.
They were unbelievably sweet, especially considering that they were probably woken up at the crack of dawn to get ready for the Philadelphia stop of the Victory Tour and 7 out of 10 sites asked them how they were because it’s habit and it’s the polite thing to do, okay?! The interview itself ran a little long, so each site only had a chance for one question. But in the post-interview downtime, Sam and Jena sang “Happy Birthday” to Samantha from Panem Propaganda, because her birthday was Saturday and hey, they could. Yeah, we’re kinda TOTALLY smitten.
So now that they gushing is done, on to the interview! Please note that a large portion of the interview is under the READ MORE link!
Sam, fans have followed the casting with a lot of attention to detail, and Annie Cresta was not cast until you guys had wrapped Catching Fire, so without an actress in that role, did you find it difficult to draw from Finnick’s relationship with her in the Catching Fire arena and if so how did you overcome that?
Sam: I definitely see where you are coming from. No, but I don’t feel like without a picture in my head, as an actor I necesarily needed that to draw from, if you know what I mean. Obviously from personal experience, I am married and there for my wife was my kind of experience that I could draw from. You know, the love of my life and all that. So I didn’t necessarily need an actress or an image of a person to emotionally inform me, if that makes sense. Definitely I am very excited to get started with Steph Dawson, who is playing Annie Cresta. Finnick spends so much time in the arena, away from her, focusing on mainly protecting Katniss. I don’t feel that it affected my performance necessarily during Catching Fire.
#2 HG Movie Site
When you become part of the cast for a franchise as big as the Hunger Games, with such a big fanbase is there a pressure to please a lot of people or do you find that it’s easier when there is already millions of people that love it?
Jena: Well it’s kind of a give and take. I think luckily Sam and I – Sam if I could just speak for you – we were both such fans of the series anyway, that coming in with such love and appreciation for the project, such passion for a project it only propels you forward knowing that there is 100,000 people out there that has the same love and passion. Of course it’s a little terrifying in the morning when you want to make sure that you are getting it right. But fortunately books are two dimensional beings and films are a three dimensional format. We were building things in a whole new way. So there is no way to get it like the book in every way, because books are two dimensional. We are building blood and love and sweat. We’re breathing life into these characters and so I think that they are always going to be better than the books ever imagined them.
#3 Hunger Games Fireside Chat
Over the course of filming, you’ve obviously gotten to spend a lot of time with other members of the cast. Who did you really enjoy hanging out with off set, and are there any close bonds you formed that you think will go beyond the films many years into the future?
Jena: The entire cast is so rad, it’s hard to pick one person. We’ve become such a tight-knit family. I kind of fangirled out over Philip Seymour Hoffman, just a little bit. I mean, he’s been one of my favorites, I don’t know.
Sam: Yeah, we all sort of ended up socializing off set as much as we did on set, and there was a lot of fun to be had. And that all kind of spans back to the fact that Francis was very open to ideas and it made it much more of a collaborative family experience, if that makes sense. There was a lot of misbehaving and mischief caused, but, you know, in a very fun way, and we were all able to kind of focus on the job at hand when we needed to. But yeah, I don’t think there was one person I disliked, and if I did, I’d be sure to tell you! (laughter) Actually, I’m not a big fan of Jena, Jena Malone.
Jena: …Jina Mahone or something? She’s a crazer.
Sam: But we all got along like a house on fire. You can’t help but really admire an experience like that really.
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