Exclusive: Jennifer Lawrence is close to getting an offer to star as Katniss in Lionsgate’s “Hunger Games,” Lionsgate’s bet on the next “Twilight”-sized young-adult franchise.
Daily Variety first reported that Lawrence was being considered for the role along with Hailee Steinfeld and Abigail Breslin, and that there was strong interest at the time for Lawrence to get the role.
Age was a significant factor in the decision, as insiders have told Variety that Ross and Lionsgate execs were weighing whether to play the role younger or older. That would not only help determine the tone, but also play a part in casting other roles, specifically the role of Peeta, Katniss’ love interest.
Steinfeld and Breslin are both 14 and Lawrence is 20. Though there are plenty of up-and-coming teenage actors, Lionsgate can more easily find a recognizable face in his 20s for the male lead.
The deal may have come together sooner, but Lawrence has not officially signed on to any other projects since her best actress nomination. Thesp has been weighing over offers, including Oliver Stone’s “Savages,” and may had scheduling issues to work out.