First off, wishing all of you Hunger Games fans a very happy 4th of July. But, before we get to the holiday-inspired material, in case you’ve been off the grid for the past day, we’ve got some huge news to announce. Jena Malone has been offered the role of Johanna Mason in Catching Fire. It’s rather tough not to launch into a rant about how thrilled I am with this news, but I’ll contain myself and just direct you to the fandom-wide reaction piece we ran yesterday.
As for the other Catching Fire new additions, there hasn’t been much movement in terms of solid announcements. There was that whole Kevin Nash/Victor Gojcaj thing, Romeo Miller (Lil’ Romeo) supposedly met with Lionsgate for a part, Hunter Parrish has been chatting with producers about Finnick and all the while nothing’s been confirmed with Philip Seymour Hoffman taking the role of Plutarch Heavensbee. Some say he did officially sign on, but until the word comes from Lionsgate or Hoffman’s reps, there’s no taking it as a guarantee.
But enough of all the gossip. Hollywood’s got to take a day off for the holiday right? Okay, maybe not, but we’re still going to celebrate Independence Day Hunger Games-style. With the help of The Hunger Games fandom, here’s how Independence Day might go down in Panem.
Perri – Movies.com – Beetee
If you’ve read Catching Fire, you know there’s no one more likely to put on an electrifying fireworks display than District 3 tribute Beetee. Coming from Panem’s technology-centric district, Beetee knows a thing or two about igniting a fuse and is particularly skilled when it comes to lighting things up with only a single, very special wire. However, with the right resources, Beetee could undoubtedly come up with the proper firepower to light up the night sky in Panem with an array of colors, shapes and perhaps even a mockingjay. Now does that scream independence or what?
Adam – Hunger Games Fireside Chat – Delly Cartwright
In troubled times, every oppressed, despondent, impoverished, malnourished community needs to celebrate its holidays with some Pieter Bruegel "Peasant Dance"-like cheer! Enter Delly Cartwright, the most happy-go-lucky, not-even-my-friend-getting-reaped-is-going-to-stop-the-sun-from-shining resident of District 12 to host the festivities. She would throw an all-smiles feast at the Hob, where the dispirited citizens can share appetizer plates of squirrel scraps, a better-not-ask stew, and - just maybe - some bread crumbs. Fortunately, Haymitch saves the day with several buckets of cheap liquor, and the whole district gets wasted enough to forget their problems. And there's Delly, grinning from the first moment to the last, fighting tyranny in the only way she can: by embracing the sweetest that life has to offer. Somewhere off in the distance, President Snow is muttering, "A little hope is effective, a lot of hope is dangerous" over a stuffed pig ordered by - well, nobody quite knows, but it's decadent. And if he had seen the look on Katniss Everdeen's face, the girl who personally provided half the Hob's meat with an extraordinary day's hunting, he would not have thanked Delly for her consideration.
Savanna – Hunger Games Fireside Chat – Caesar Flickerman
After renewing his spray tan and dying his hair Capitol red, Caesar Flickerman will host a televised concert in the City Circle featuring Panem's most popular musical artists. Think "Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve with Ryan Seacrest" (with Claudius Templesmith taking on Seacrest’s role as co-host, natch). Given the Capitol’s penchant for excess, it should come as no surprise that the performances and partying will last into the wee hours of the morning. Throughout the night, “live” footage of Independence Day festivities in all the districts will be projected on giant screens in the Circle, though most of it will have been staged and pre-recorded.
Elena & Lauren – HG Movie Site – Finnick
[Finnick’s POV] Food is the basis of life (and hard to come by most of the time), so what better way than to have an “Underdogs BBQ” to stick it to the Capitol? I’ve invited some of my closest friends but it’s Annie I’m looking forward to seeing the most. In my mind, she’ll forever be the Capitol’s biggest underdog of all. With fireworks in the distance and our bellies full from the seafood feast, I can’t help but wonder where Annie could be since she never showed earlier. Trident in hand, I decide to make the most of this time and roast some marshmallows over the bonfire. No sooner than the gooey ball of sugar starts to brown, a familiar hand tries to pull the marshmallow from the trident, fire and all. Oh, Annie. After quickly consuming the rare treat (and almost burning our mouths in sheer delight), I lead the two of us to my woven net/hammock to take in the rest of the firework “celebration”. Lying with Annie in our makeshift hammock is the perfect ending to our day. Finding love in our precarious situations is our own act of rebellion.
Arianna – Down With The Capitol – Haymitch
Since Haymitch is all about the “celebratory beverages” for the holiday, or rather any day of the year, he will naturally have red, white, and blue alcohol drinks for the occasion. A drunken Haymitch then stumbles his way to the District 12 town square where he proceeds to set off an array of homemade fireworks. After startling a few citizens and wandering donkeys, Haymitch stumbles back home while humming the national Panem anthem.
Kelsey – My Hunger Games – Effie Trinket
[Effie’s POV] I will celebrate our hard earned independence at the gala in honor of the esteemed President Coriolanus Snow. He may have seemed a bit harsh during the rebellion, but Panem is reunited yet again and whether or not you agree, our dear Snow is to thank for that. First things first, I must make a good impression now that we have a second chance at peace. I'll be buying a festive new pair of red, white and blue pumps, complete with synthetic sparklers, of course. I know how much Coriolanus adores sparks; they are all he talked about during the rebellion! Pairing those my star spangled dress suit, I'll tie the ensemble together with a matching sparkler wig designed by my friend Cinna. He muttered something about it being "on fire" once, but I'm sure he was simply joking about that.
Lee – The Hob – Seneca Crane
Seneca Crane, as Head Gamemaker, would surely set off multiple displays of fireworks above the arena to celebrate the holiday. This would add a dramatic effect to the games for the overall viewing pleasure of the audience with a "shock and awe" spectacle - we all know how much the Capitol citizens love bright, shiny things! The Games Center Techs would have the opportunity to stretch their abilities to create really vivid displays of color while the Tributes within the arena would be working to beat their opponents under a barrage of startling color and sounds.
Kait – Victor’s Village – Peeta
Peeta celebrates every year by slaving away at the bakery, decorating cakes and cupcakes with fresh strawberries and blueberries provided to him by Katniss and Gale. The day may not be his favorite, but these red, white, and blue creations sell like hotcakes! He may even get to save one for himself, if his mother isn't looking!
Crystal - Mockingjay.net - Katniss
Not one for frivolous holiday celebrations, especially those celebrating Panem and the government she despises, Katniss simply heads out to the woods outside District 12 to think and help piece herself together in the aftermath of the Games. It’s difficult to keep her mouth shut about what she really thinks of President Snow and the Capitol on such a day, especially when the rest of District 12 is still so overjoyed in having not one, but two victors from one Hunger Games. Still, knowing that Prim enjoys a special occasion, she picks extra strawberries and some blueberries, then buys sweetened cream on the way home so they can enjoy a little fresh red, white, and blue dessert. Since they can afford butcher meat for their “special” meal for the day, Katniss simply gifts her kills to the Hawthornes.
The Hunger Games Countdown runs here on Movies.com every other Wednesday. There are 505 days until the release of Catching Fire.