London, Jul 27 (PTI) Filmmaker Francis Lawrence says he is looking forward to returning to “The Hunger Games” franchise as the director of the prequel “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes”.
The 49-year-old filmmaker, who directed three of the four films in the “Hunger Games” series based on Suzanne Collins' dystopian novels, said he was thrilled when the author told him about the prequel book.
''When I heard that she was writing a book, I got really excited. She called me before it was released and filled me in a little bit about what it was about, but she didn't want to spoil anything so that I would enjoy the read.
''I loved the story, I love what it's about, and I love how relevant it is. She's always really good at that. She's a really fun writer in terms of twists and page turn-ability of her books, so that was great,” Lawrence said in a YouTube interview with the UK’s Discussing Film.
The filmmaker behind “Hunger Games: Catching Fire” and “Hunger Games: Mockingjay” Part 1 & 2, said the script for the prequel is currently being written.
Michael Arndt, the Oscar-winning screenwriter of 'Little Miss Sunshine', is adapting the screenplay.
''The characters are awesome and it's really exciting to dive back into a different, earlier version of the world and for the most part a bunch of new characters. So yeah, really exciting and the script is progressing really well!” he said.
Lawrence added that he has always admired Collins’ ideas behind the books and stories.
“I've really always loved the thematic relevance and ideas behind the books and stories. I think that's part of why we got such a great cast and I think that's also why it's resonated with so many people and not just teenagers, but also adults.
''I was always eager to get back into the world, but I just wanted to make sure that it came from an organic place and for me, that's always from Suzanne, as opposed to a studio sort of urging everybody to come up with a sequel or prequel.'' “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” will focus on Coriolanus Snow at age 18, years before he would become the tyrannical President of Panem.
Veteran actor Donald Sutherland had portrayed Snow in the earlier four movies -- 'The Hunger Games' (2012), 'Catching Fire' (2013), 'Mockingjay: Part I' (2014) and 'Mockingjay: Part II' (2015). PTI SHD SHD