Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
SAN DIEGO — The new trailer for The Hunger Games: Catching Fire premiered Saturday afternoon at Comic-Con International, along with the first appearance at the massive fan convention for the Hunger Games cast. Here some of the highlights from the trailer, along with some insights from the panel itself.
1. The budget is clearly much bigger.
The trailer was chockablock with big visual effects vistas of the Capitol, directly addressing a common fan complaint that The Hunger Games skimped too much on the spectacle of the world itself.
But for her part, Jennifer Lawrence also spoke highly of how motivating working on movies with tiny budgets can be. “I really think there can be something said for having too much money,” she said. But she did add that on big budget studio films, “Their food is a lot better, and the trailers are bigger.” So: balance!
2. The love triangle is definitely heating up.
The romantic tension between Katniss (Lawrence), Gale (Liam Hemsworth), and Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) does indeed heat up in the sequel, as Katniss and Peeta deal with the fallout from their possibly faux romance from The Hunger Games.
“It was an act,” said Hutcherson on the panel.
“It was complicated,” countered Lawrence.
“It was an act!” insisted Hutcherson, before shaking his head with a chuckle. “We’re not getting into this.”
3. But Gale clearly suffers more than Peeta.
“It’s interesting to turn up to work and just get whipped for three days straight,” Hemsworth said. “After three days of getting whipped with anything, it’s going to start to hurt. It was good fun.”
4. The costumes are even more elaborate — like Katniss’ mockingjay dress.
“My wedding dress was my favorite to look at,” said Lawrence. “Wearing it was one of the hardest things.” And forget about moving in the dress. “I’m not good at walking,” said the woman who tripped en route to get her Best Actress Oscar.
5. With Katniss and Peeta spending even more time together on screen, Lawrence and Hutcherson’s off-screen friendship was in full bloom.
“They are the funniest pair and the biggest joy to work with,” said Jeffrey Wright, who plays former Hunger Games champion Beetee. “You can’t understand half of what they’re saying.”
Case in point: The adorable moment when Lawrence and Hutcherson attempted to explain the scene where a sobbing Katniss has to revive Peeta, and a thick line of snot trailed from her nose into his mouth. Director Francis Lawrence (no relation to the actress) promised the outtake will make the DVD/Blu-ray extras, which is exactly right and had better happen.
6. Cinna’s presence will definitely be felt.
No spoilers here, but Lenny Kravitz was clearly soaking in the experience of his very first Comic-Con on the big Hall H stage. Being in The Hunger Games, he said, has opened him up to an entirely new fan base. “I have a day job,” he said. “I have to make music. What’s great, very little children come up to me, like 6 or 7 years old, wanting to meet Cinna — and they have no idea who I am.”
7. The new arena was even more intense.
The cast said they all enjoyed shooting many of the new arena scenes in Hawaii, but the training for them sounded even tougher for the actors than it was for the last film. For some, perhaps more than others.
“The hardest stunt is probably just basic running,” Lawrence said. Bless her.
8. And, yes, Finnick (Sam Claflin) is shirtless.
Claflin was shooting overseas and couldn’t attend the panel — which also included Jena Malone (Johanna Mason) and Willow Shields (Prim). But moderator Dave Karger did bring up an interview with Claflin in which the actor expressed concern he wasn’t going to be sexy enough for fans.
Hutcherson immediately piped up: “He is a sex god.”
So there you have it.