The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Director Discusses Philip Seymour Hoffman’s Death

By Rudie Obias | Updated

Mockingjay PSHAlthough the film doesn’t open in theaters for another eight months, production on The Hunger Games: Mockingjay recently faced a tragedy no one expected: the unexpected death of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman. In an interview with USA Today, Mockingjay‘s director Francis Lawrence talks about how the production is carrying after the loss:

It was obviously very rough for all of us. He was a friend. He was an amazing actor, an iconic actor. He was someone I really looked up to… We shut down for a day to give people time to deal with the sudden shock of it all. And to try and sort of figure things out a little bit. … We as a cast and crew definitely honored him. We gathered everyone together and had a big moment for him. We still think about him every day. It’s hard not to imagine him being here. It’s something so sudden, so shocking.

At the time of his death, Philip Seymour Hoffman only had about a week left of shooting on Mockingjay – Part Two, in the role of Plutarch Heavensbee. Hoffman’s last scene to be filmed was a major one, which had to be re-written and re-worked after his death. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part Two will be the actor’s final screen performance when it hits in 2015.

Meanwhile, Lionsgate has released an official plot synopsis for the final chapters in the widely popular Hunger Games film franchise. The synopsis below reveals the existence of the mysterious District 13, an independent nation not under the control of President Snow or The Capitol.

The worldwide phenomenon of The Hunger Games continues to set the world on fire with The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1, which finds Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) in District 13 after she literally shatters the games forever. Under the leadership of Commander Coin (Julianne Moore) and the advice of her trusted friends, Katniss spreads her wings as she fights to save Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) and a nation moved by her courage.

The synopsis doesn’t mention where in the story Mockingjay will be split into two parts. The two most likely options are that Part One would end when the rebels invade the Capitol, or possibly when Peeta is rescued and it’s revealed that he has been brainwashed and now wants to kill Katniss Everdeen.

The third installment in The Hunger Games film series stars Jennifer Lawrence, Liam Hemsworth, Josh Hutcherson, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Donald Sutherland, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Julianne Moore, Sam Claflin, Jeffrey Wright, Jena Malone, Stef Dawson, Natalie Dormer, Evan Ross, Meta Golding, Lily Rabe, Patina Miller, and Mahershalalhashbaz Ali.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part One hits theaters everywhere on November 21, 2014, in IMAX.