The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is ready to hit theaters this November, and principal photography on the next sequel, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, will begin this September. Production on Mockingjay will be far more ambitious considering that director Francis Lawrence will ostensibly be shooting two full-length feature films back-to-back with Part 1 and Part 2. Aside from Mockingjay’s principal cast, including Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, and Liam Hemsworth, casting has now begun on The Hunger Games sequel film.
As reported by our sister site Cinema Blend, Australian actor Stef Dawson will join the cast of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 and Part 2 as Annie Cresta, the winner of the 70th Hunger Games, and Finnick Odair’s love interest. Annie Cresta was a Tribute from District 4 who managed to outswim her competitors in the Hunger Games when its Gamemakers created a brilliant tsunami. Annie Cresta is a fantastic swimmer because District 4 is a fishing community. Cresta is apparently first mentioned in Catching Fire, but it looks like Francis Lawrence will hold off on her full introduction until Mockingjay in 2014.
Stef Dawson is mainly an unknown actor in the United States. She’s appeared on Australian TV series such as Out of the Blue and Swift and Shift Couriers. Dawson has also appeared in a few indie films such as Shadow of the Monarch. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay is her biggest role to date.
Meanwhile, ComingSoon reports that Lionsgate has also announced that actor Evan Ross will join the cast of both Mockingjay films. Ross will play Messalla, film director Cressida’s assistant, who ends up joining the rebellion against the Capitol with Cressida and her cameramen, Castor and Pollux.
Actor Evan Ross made his feature film debut in the film ATL in 2006. He has since appeared in a recurring role on the CW’s 90210 TV reboot. Ross was also featured in Jay & Mark Duplass’ Jeff, Who Lives At Home in 2012, and will appear in the upcoming TLC biopic CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story on VH1.
Stef Dawson and Evan Ross will join actor Natalie Dormer, who was recently cast as the aforementioned Cressida, a film director from the Capitol. There are some rumors that Julianne Moore might play Alma Coin, a politician who works with Katniss Everdeen to lead the rebellion, while actor Rebel Wilson might play the role of Fulvia Cardew, the assistant to Plutarch Heavensbee (Philip Seymour Hoffman) in both Mockingjay films.
Francis Lawrence will direct the final two installments of The Hunger Games film series, with Emmy Award-winning screenwriter Danny Strong (Game Change, Recount) penning both halves of Mockingjay. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay promises to be more action-packed than the first two films in the young adult series.
WARNING: SPOILERS FOR THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY AND CATCHING FIRE BELOW
After being disqualified in the Third Quarter Quell, or 75th Hunger Games, in Catching Fire, Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) agrees to be the face of the revolution against the Capitol. Gale Hawthorne (Liam Hemsworth) ascends to a new leadership role, as Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson) continues to be a victim of President Snow’s (Donald Sutherland) evil brainwashing. It’s unclear where Mockingjay will be split for Parts 1 and 2, but it is believed that the first part will end before the revolutionaries invade the Capitol.
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire will hit theaters on November 22. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 will open on November 21, 2014, and Part 2 on November 20, 2015. All three films will be presented in glorious IMAX.