Saturday, July 16, 2011

Hunger Games: the Movie: Haymitch, Senneca Crane, Caesar Flickerman and More!

And finally.......the rest of the significant characters have been cast and, best of all, John C. Reilley was not one of them!  Here is a photo run down, facts and my opinions of most of the rest of the major characters:

Haymitch Abernathy:  Woody Harrelson
Haymitch is the only living Hunger Games victor from District 12 and is the mentor of both Katniss and Peeta.  His Hunger Games story is complex and heartbreaking.  Durning his games, he formed a temporary alliance with Maysilee Donner, his fellow District 12 tribute.  Near the end of the Games, when there were only a few tributes left alive, she broke up the alliance not wanting to kill him herself.  She died a few minutes later, killed by deadly pink birds which speared her throat with their beaks.  Haymitch won the 50th Hunger Games less than a day later by using the arena's force field to repel an axe thrown by the other remaining tribute, which buried itself in her head and killed her.  After his games, Haymitch became an alcoholic due to the mental and physical torture the Games inflicted on him.  It's revealed that two weeks after his victory, President Snow had his mother, brother and girlfriend killed because of the stunt Haymitch pulled with the force field.
Despite the fact that Woody doesn't actually eat Twinkies (he's a vegan), I completely enjoyed his performance in Zombieland.  I'm know he's been in countless other films (and is in the soon to be Friends with Benefits along with Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis) but I like Zombieland a lot.  He's a great choice for Haymitch!

President Snow:  Donald Sutherland
President Snow was the leader of Panem for at least 25 years.  He is the primary antagonist of the Hunger Game Trilogy.  It is revealed that President Snow poisoned his allies, as he believed that they would become future foes, but he had to drink the poison as well so that he wouldn't attract suspicion.  Even though he took antidotes, the poison caused permanent sores on the inside of his mouth that never heal.  This is the reason he always wears the genetically perfume-enhanced rose, to cover the scent of blood on his breath-the scent that sickens Katniss.

Donald is a towering Canadian actor who has been in almost one hundred fifty different shows and films.  His son is Kiefer Sutherland, star of the show 24.  So, Donald Sutherland as the menacing, evil President Snow......I think yes.

Caesar Flickerman:  Stanley Tucci
Caesar is the interviewer for the Hunger Games and is famous for turning any conversation around for the positive.  He is also known to change the color of his lips, hair and eyelids for each Hunger Games so it should be interesting to see how Stanley looks when made up.
Stanly Tucci's name is rarely said without "I love him" following.  No kidding.  In one day my friend Amy and my sister BOTH said that.  And he is great.  He's been in many films and shows including Easy A (one of my favorites), Julie and Julia, ER, The Devil Wears Prada, Maid in Manhattan, Road to Perdition and America's Sweethearts to name a few.  He's such a likable man and playing Caesar Flickerman is the prefect role for him.

Cinna:  Lenny Kravitz
Cinna is Katniss' stylist during her campaign through the 74th Hunger Games.  Cinna was not originally from the Capitol and is not like his helpers who, to Katniss, were like "a trio of oddly-colored birds pecking around her feet."  The 74th Hunger Games is Cinna's first year of being a stylist.  Generally first-year stylists are assigned to District 12 as it's considered the "lesser" district.  But Cinna actually requested the District and wowed the Capitol audience with his unusual and breath-taking designs throughout the course of the series.  He was the one who originally created the "girl on fire" theme.  This character is very deep.  He personally told Katniss that he channels his emotions through his work.  And he maintains guarded control over his emotions and over his ideas so that he is the only one to suffer from the consequences, showing his bravery and his disdain for the harshness with which the Capitol wants to rule every aspect of Panem.  He shows care for Katniss and a deep desire to oppose the Capitol through his knowledge of fashion.  This makes Cinna one of my very favorite characters.
Now about Lenny Kravitz.........[sad face].  Not at all who I pictured.  IMO, he's much too old for this role and eccentric for this role.  Katniss said herself, "I'm taken aback by how normal he looks."  Perhaps Lenny can lose the nipple piercings and "act" normal and intelligent for the length of the movie's shoot.

Seneca Crane:  Wes Bentley
Seneca Crane was the Head Gamemaker of the 74th Hunger Games, but made the fatal mistake of letting both Katniss and Peeta survive as victors (but much to the delight of the Capitol audience).  President Snow had him executed in a horrible way.  Later in the 75th Hunger Games, when the gamemakers were evaluating tributes, as Katniss's surprising practice round, she hung a dummy with a noose she made, and painted the words Seneca Crane with berry juice on its chest.
Wes Bentley has beautiful blue eyes a vast acting career.  He's been in Jonah Hex, Ghost Rider and American Beauty to name a few.  I think he's a super addition to the Hunger Games cast.

Avox Girl:  Amber Chaney
The Avox Girl's actual name is Lavinia, but she is known simply as the "Avox girl."  Before she became an Avox, Lavinia and a boy were in an off-limits wood in District 12.  They appeared to be escaping from the Capitol, as Katniss noted that the two had a "Capitol look" to them.  A Capitol hovercraft appeared and the boy was impaled with a spear and died immediately.  Before Lavinia was scooped up by a net and taken in to the hovercraft, she briefly locked eyes with Katniss and Gale, who were out hunting for game in the woods.  Years later, Lavinia waited on Katniss as an Avox whose tongue had been cut out for committing crimes against the Capitol.  The Avox girl emerges throughout the entire trilogy.
Lavinia is said to have dark red hair, striking features and porcelain white skin.  Amber fits those but Lavinia is also supposedly in her late teens.  I couldn't find an official age on Amber, but to me it appears she missed that mark by a decade or so.  She's been in a few things but nothing I've ever heard of.

Katniss's Father:  Phillip Troy Linger
Mr. Everdeen lived and worked inside the gates of District 12.  He was a coal miner, poacher and Katniss' teacher when it came to the woods.  It was said that he had a beautiful voice, and it was claimed that even the birds would stop to listen when he sang.  That was how he wooed Mrs. Everdeen to be his wife.  Mr. Everdeen died during a terrible mining accident five year before the 74th Hunger Games.  The mine collapsed on top of him and Mr. Hawthorne (Gale's dad), killing them both.  Both Katniss and Prim were in school when the accident took place.
Phillip Troy Linger should do ok in this role.  It's small but important part.  He seems to be Katniss' driving force much of the time and obviously if this character was cast there will be flashbacks.  As for Phillip's career, his first feature film was Fire Birds.  He's also been on Baywatch and One Tree Hill (blah-these actors will do anything to get camera time.)

Claudius Templesmith:  Toby Jones
Claudius Templesmith is the legendary announcer in the arenas of The Hunger Games.  He is described to have a large, booming voice and a sense of superiority.  During the 74th Hunger Games, Claudius, for the first time, spoke in a panicked voice, as Katniss and Peeta faced the Capitol with suicide.  Claudius usually announces invitations to feasts, and always ends his sentences with the slogan for the Games, "and may the odds be ever in your favor!"
Toby Jones is one busy little man-and I don't mean because he's 5' 5".  He is in seven films that are either filming or pre/post production.  He also just finished Captain America: The First Avenger.  He is the voice of Dobby on the Harry Potter movies, Karl Rove on W., Truman Capote on Infamous and 'Smee' in Finding Neverland (LOVE!).

Portia:  Latarsha Rose
Portia was the stylist of Peeta for the 74th and 75th Hunger Games.  She worked very well with Cinna and together they created amazing ideas and costumes for their District 12 Tributes.
Latarsha has been a one-hit wonder on many shows including Law & Order, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, CSI: NY, Bones, CSI: Miami and All My Children.  This movie should be great for her as there are no more CSIs to choose from.

Octavia:  Brooke Bundy
Octavia is part of Cinna's prep team for Katniss.  She appears in all three books.  Like most people living in the Capitol, she loves fashion and games.  She grows very attached to Katniss.  In Mockingjay, she is moved to District 13 with the rest of the prep team.  While there, she steals a piece of bread from the food supplies and the entire prep team is taken into custody by District 13 officials, who beat them as punishment.  Katniss discovers them and demands that they be released.  She is obeyed and the prep team is released from being tormented.
I love the look of Brooke Bundy.  Though she's only been on a few short films, I think she will be great for this role.  Her body, however, will be dyed a pale shade of green if keeping with details from the book.

So there they are!  I'm still waiting on Madge and Greasy Sae!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

"The Cloud"

Photos by Candace

As she dances about the sun.
I wield the flail of the lashing hail,
And whiten the green plains under,
And then again I dissolve it in rain,
And laugh as I pass in thunder.

I am the daughter of Earth and Water,
And the nursling of the Sky;
I pass through the pores of the ocean and shores;
I change, but I cannot die.
For after the rain when with never a stain
The pavilion of Heaven is bare,
And the winds and sunbeams with their convex gleams
Build up the blue dome of air,
I silently laugh at my own cenotaph,
And out of the caverns of rain,
Like a child from the womb, like a ghost from the tomb,
I arise and unbuild it again. 

Excerpt of "The Cloud" by Percy Bysshe Shelly