After much digging and deliberation it looks like Catching Fire, the sequel to this year’s smash The Hunger Games, has finally found the actress who will play Johanna Mason. Among the numerous names in the running for the role, model turned actress Zoe Aggeliki is said to have the lead.
Both Aggeliki and her primary competition, the much more experienced thespian Jena Malone (Sucker Punch, Donnie Darko), auditioned for Catching Fire director Frances Lawrence. Sources tell Deadline that after the auditions Aggeliki is “in the most serious talks” for the role.
We haven’t yet seen Aggeliki flex her acting muscles on the big screen, though she has a handful of high-profile roles in the works. She’ll appear alongside Ryan Reynolds in next year’s adaption of supernatural detective comic R.I.P.D., and she also scored a role in the second Percy Jackson movie, Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters. If she’s able to add Catching Fire to that list, that is three big films right out of the gate. No years of toil in low-budget independent obscurity for this one.
In Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games trilogy, Johanna Mason is a previous victor of the games. She’s manipulative, catty, bitter, and all around mean. And she’s also prone to wielding an axe when the mood strikes. She plays a pivotal role in Catching Fire, and a smaller, but equally important part in the third chapter, Mockingjay.
If Aggeliki does indeed land the Johanna role, she’ll join returning cast members Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, and Donald Sutherland.