Born in Kentucky, The Hunger Games’ lead actor Jennifer Lawrence has found herself in an interesting tale of teen romance and action. Based in the ruins of what was once North America, each of the capital’s 12 districts send a teenage boy and girl to compete in these ‘life-threatening games’.
Jennifer who plays Katniss Everdeen says, “It revolves around a twisted punishment for a past uprising and an ongoing government intimidation tactic called The Hunger Games. It is a nationally televised event in which ‘tributes’ must fight with one another until one survivor remains.”
Shown as a 16-year-old in the film, Katniss volunteers to enter the game in her younger sister’s place. She says, “My character is forced to rely upon her sharp instincts as well as the mentorship of drunken former victor Haymitch Abernathy when she’s pitted against highly-trained ‘tributes’ who have prepared for these games their entire lives. Katniss aims to win and return home to District 12. But before her lie the impossible choices that weigh survival against humanity and life against love.”
Based on Suzanne Collins’ best-selling novel by the same name, the first in a trilogy, the film is directed by Gary Ross and releases in India today. Action combined with teenage romance attracted Jennifer to the project.
She says, “My character is not about looking cool with a bow-and-arrow — she’s heartbroken by all that she has to do. It was important for me not to look weak despite being hungry. If the film had been shot 20 years ago, Katniss may just have been a male character because of the dominance of men in cinema in the action genre.”
Ask her about the change in the trend, and she says, “It’s great, because I feel like we’ve got to a place where we have strong female leads. We’ve got Lara Croft as the female James Bond. In Hunger Games, I am not the female James Bond, and I don’t have to be that to get to do action. I’m just a young girl who has been thrown in to this do-or-die situation. That, I think, is a great shift and symbolises acceptance of women in strong action oriented roles.”