Hunger Games prequel in the works with Francis Lawrence

Hunger Games Courage Change the World Bookends
Hunger Games Courage Change the World Bookends

“The Games continue.

Following past teases, the Hunger Games franchise is officially getting a prequel movie based on author Suzanne Collin’s forthcoming novel, The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Lionsgate formally announced Tuesday.

Francis Lawrence, who previously helmed Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence (no relation) in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and Parts 1 and 2 of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, will return to direct the new film. Collins herself will adapt the screenplay with one of the Catching Fire screenwriters, Michael Arndt.

Donald Sutherland portrayed the authoritarian President Snow across the first four movies, which circled the nation of Panem and its savage annual affair wherein two teenaged “tributes” from each of the 12 Districts were chosen at random to fight to the death in a brutal arena. Katniss Everdeen, played by Lawrence in the films as a young woman from the impoverished District 12 who survived the games and fought to overthrow this tyrannical regime, was the focus of Collins’ earlier books. But The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes follows a younger Coriolanus Snow at the age of 18.

Years before he becomes the president of Panem, Snow is picked to be a mentor for the 10th annual Hunger Games. Elation turns to disdain when he realizes the female tribute he’s assigned hails from District 12. Nina Jacobson, who produced all of the previous Hunger Games movies, returns to produce this prequel with Brad Simpson.”

Entertainment Weekly has the full story.