CASTING RUMORS: ‘Catching Fire’ eyes Claflin, Leo, Shalhoub
With two blockbusters under his belt, Brit thesp Sam Claflin looks to be lining up one more, as sources tell Variety that the “Snow White and the Huntsman” star is the choice to play Finnick Odair in Lionsgate’s sequel “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.”
Additionally, sources say that Oscar winner Melissa Leo and three-time Emmy winner Tony Shalhoub are the frontrunners to play Mags and Beetee, respectively. Regardless of the status of their potential involvement, Claflin, Leo and Shalhoub are all on the studio’s shortlist for roles in the highly-anticipated sequel.
Lionsgate and all of the actors’ respective reps had no comment on the casting.
Finnick was the most coveted available role in the “Hunger Games” sequel, and sources tell Variety that Claflin is nearing an offer. The character, who was 14 when he was selected as a tribute, is one of the youngest to have won the Hunger Games. Katniss does not trust him at first and is hesitant to make Finnick her ally, though he proves to be valuable after he saves Peeta from drowning in the Quarter Quell.
Mags was Finnick’s mentor when he first competed in the Hunger Games. She volunteers to take the place of his lover, Annie Cresta, in order to spare her life. Katniss makes it a point to ally with her because of her selflessness.
Beetee is an inventor who Johanna Mason nicknames “Volts” due to his knack for using electricity as a weapon. He’s ability to create a forcefield is crucial to the Rebels’ plan to rescue the Hunger Games tributes in the Quarter Quell.