9:07pm PT by Philiana Ng
'Hunger Games': 5 Reasons Why It Should Be at Comic-Con
After Lionsgate confirmed that it will not be holding an official Comic-Con panel touting its anticipated big-screen adaptation of The Hunger Games trilogy, fans expressed disappointment -- and understandably so.
Hunger Games is a bestselling series by Suzanne Collins and has a loyal (and extremely vocal) fanbase. But here are five reasons why the show should have a presence in San Diego's cavernous Hall H:
1. Rain on Twilight's parade: Hunger Games has a core that is not unlike that of the Twilight ilk. Remember the first year the Twilight cast debuted at Comic-Con ahead of its first film back in 2008? Shrieks and screams from prebuscent girls -- and moms -- made it impossible for anyone to remotely hear what was being said, asked or even considered. Now, as the penultimate Twilight film makes its way into theaters this November (and its once-fresh-faced stars now veterans of the Con), 2011 marks an opportune time for Hunger Games (aka the new kids on the block) to steal some of the thunder.
Without many of the big geek-centric films holding panels (like The Dark Knight Rises and the new Superman reboot), wouldn't Hunger Games fill a big void previously filled by three years of Tron: Legacy and the introduction of The Avengers, etc.? On the other side of it, the New York Times noted that movie studios were re-evaluating their respective plans at Comic-Con. “It’s a red-letter opportunity, but you shouldn’t go simply because it sits there on the calendar,” said Michael Moses, co-president of marketing for Universal Pictures to the Times. After what happened with Scott Pilgrim vs. the World and Sucker Punch, for instance, it seems like studios are taking the cautious road. When it all comes down to it, Hunger Games has
2. Love triangle, love triangle, love triangle: Does Katniss belong with best friend Gale or fellow Hunger Games partner Peeta? That's one of the main queries made by Hunger Games devotees (and frankly any reader of "teen" fiction, just insert different names: i.e. Elena, Damon and Stefan). In the books, things seemingly lean a certain way, but even so, the big-screen version will most likely carve out its own path -- latching onto the "Will they, won't they?" of it all. So why not have Jennifer Lawrence (Katniss), Liam Hemsworth (Gale) and Josh Hutcherson (Peeta) the 6,000-plus their money's worth. Plus, it'd give Con-ers a first official look at the three together on one stage. How's that?
3. Take it to the extreme: There was a moment in time when casting announcements were made on Facebook almost every day on minor, but key characters in the books, so why stop now? Attendees at Comic-Con are known to be technologically and social media-savvy so it'd be the prime place to ramp up efforts. Tweets .. cell phone pictures, it doesn't get old ... Forget spending loads of money marketing with expensive ad spots! Let the knowledgeable readers do the work for you!
4. Quell critics with a first look at Jennifer Lawrence in action as Katniss: When Lawrence's casting was first announced, some diehards weren't happy with the choice. Many thought she was simply too old to play a young teenager. But when the Entertainment Weekly cover with the young actress in character as Katniss was released, it seemed to diminish the worrying for some. Still, with less nine months to go before the Lionsgate film is scheduled for release in theaters (March 23, 2012 is the magical date!), it would be smart to debut a 10-second shot of Lawrence in action as Katniss. (Even if it's of Katniss running through the woods.) The first year Twilight was in Hall H, the team previewed the pivotal scene between Bella (Kristen Stewart) and the villainous James (Cam Gigandet) in the ballet studio -- arguably the climax of the first book. Understandably, Hunger Games won't be able to match that; they'll still be in the middle of production.
5. Surprise announcements: Too early to announce castings and upcoming hemers, etc. for the next film(s)? Chris Weitz, who directed The Twilight Saga: New Moon recently tweeted that if the offer was there, he would be open to directing, saying, " 'if given the oportunity [sic] , would you consider directing The Hunger Games?'//I LOVE the book. But I don't know if I have another epic in me." Good fit? Should Twilight-ers make the jump to Hunger? (Anticipated casting announcement? Finnick, introduced in Catching Fire.)
Here's bonus video of Lawrence talking about Hemsworth ("hot") and Hutcherson ("charm"):