Talking about preparing for The Hunger Games, Leven Rambin (she’ll play District 1 tribute Glimmer) said that she would be working a lot with stars Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson, and that she thought that the 24 tributes would end up spending a lot of time together: “We’re all in LA training, preparing, and getting our lives in order. I think we’ll all gather and do some bonding.”
But this isn’t a movie about making friends, it’s about hunting other kids to stay alive. With the exception of one’s fellow district mate, each tribute knows nothing about his/her opponents — and prefers to keep it that way so it’ll be easier to kill them. I’m willing to bet that Lionsgate will discourage bonding among the 24 young actors who will face off in the Arena, even forcibly separating them during the shoot.
It’s a method that’s worked for other movies where the actors have to foster extreme resentment toward one another. For Saving Private Ryan, Steven Spielberg subjected his cast to intensive Army training, but made sure that everyone knew that Matt Damon (Private Ryan) was allowed to sit out. That disgruntlement translated well to shooting, when the characters don’t want to risk their lives to find Ryan. And when shooting The Devil Wears Prada, Meryl Streep remained icy toward Anne Hathaway even when the cameras weren’t rolling, to maintain the Miranda/Andy dynamic.
A huge source of discord among the Hunger Games tributes is that districts like 1 and 2 — those closest to the Capitol — exist in upper-middle-class standards, while the latter districts — especially Katniss and Peeta’s home, 12 — are poor as dirt. Fascinating psychological experiment: Director Gary Ross puts Rambin in Will Smith‘s massive trailer and serves her delicacies, leaving Lawrence and Hutcherson with groceries from Piggly Wiggly and a Motel 6.
[poster by 123CoolCookie]