Mockingjay Part 1

The Hunger Games Auction: The “Want!” and the “WHAT?!”

GUESS WHAT GUYS! Apparently, a bajillion props from The Hunger Games movies are going up for auction.

Guess that means that the exhibition is done? Also, we guess that Lionsgate is trying to make up for some recent, massive stock dips. BUT THOSE ARE JUST GUESSES.

Being the absolute crazies that we are, We looked through most of the online catalogue over at TheHungerGamesAuction.com. Because it’s movie props! They’re fun, they’re shiny, and they have some great sentimental value– well, some of it at least.

Truthfully, we’re not going to bid on any of it because we’re cheap and the lowest priced items are estimated to go for at least $200. We love feeding ourselves more than we love The Hunger Games. Sorry! Still, there we definitely some items that made us squeal “Want!” Of course, for every one of those, something made us say “WHAT?!”

Let’s explore a few, shall we?

WANT.

Obvious starting point. This is the Mac Daddy of all Hunger Games outfits.

mockingjay outfit

WHAT?!

Katniss’ and Peeta’s pajamas? They’re not even display clothes! Are you going to buy it and sleep in it, hoping some of the actor scent stuck (assuming this is the actual pair they wore and not an extra set)?

pajamas

WANT.

OBVIOUS REASONS.

victors village sign

WHAT?!

The reaping ball is cool, in theory. But it’s just a giant glass bowl and they want to start at $1,000! Sure, the paper props are included. But do they have the meaning of life scribbled within? No? Then we’re all set!

reaping ball

WANT.

We realize this is the commercialized bow Katniss was given by District 13 when she became The Mockingjay. But it’s just so effin’ pretty!

katniss capitol bow

WHAT?!

This is less about the medicine ball (it least that had a purpose in the story) than the medicine ball rack, which is being auctioned off separately for hundreds of dollars. And maybe you could hang your coats on it, guys!

medicine ball

WANT.

It’s a silver parachute guys! They mean hope and support and inspiration and.. *wipes single tear away*

silver parachute

WHAT?!

Peeta’s pearl for Katniss is important. The fake oyster he found it in and the fake coconut they drank water out of, though? What does one even DO with those items? Do that fit nicely into anyone’s living room decor?!

coconut oyster

WANT.

We have nowhere to put this but we want it PURELY FOR THE LULZ. We wanna drive it around town blasting Spice Girls songs and shooting off confetti cannons while getting strange looks just because we could if we had enough money to bid on it!

capitol military vehicle

WHAT?!

This is HUGE and fumbly and not something you can casually display in a home! Unless you’re going to convert it into a race car bed-esque situation. Maybe not even then.

capitol chariot

WANT.

If we want the Capitol’s fine china, there’s nothing wrong with that. WE ARE ADULTS, DAMMIT!

capitol china

WHAT?!

Someone is about to yell at us because these sculptures from Katniss’ original tribute apartment are art. We can’t help it– All we see are giant, hole-y pensises.

sculptures

Why Wasn’t Buttercup An Option?!
The Girl With The Pearl

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UPDATED: Win Your Way Into The Hunger Games LA Marathon Event!

OH HAI! REMEMBER HOW THERE WAS A CONTEST HERE?

BAD NEWS – Some really pathetic “fans” cheated and tried to claim The Hunger Games marathon prize for themselves before we officially launched the contest last night. We weren’t the only site they did it to, either.

giphy (1)

GOOD NEWS – We caught those suckers and invalidated their tickets with extreme prejudice! MUAHAHAHAHA!

For you patient LA-based fans who follow the rules and still want tickets to The Hunger Games Marathon Event, we’ll relaunch the contest later today, but we’re not going to tell you when!

Much love and respect for everyone waiting patiently for their tickets. We’re thrilled to be able to give you another opportunity!

More Hints at the DVD/Blu-Ray Extras!

As we get closer to the home entertainment release of Mockingjay Part 2 and the first 4- film collection, we’re finding out more about what extras are in store for us. HitFix has a new trailer with some details on the 4-film collection, and we’re excited.

12 Never-Before-Seen Deleted Scenes from The Hunger Games
• 6 Deleted Scenes from The Hunger Games: Catching Fire – Including 1 Never Before Seen
• 9 Deleted Scenes from The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1
• 2 All-New Featurettes: “Picturing Panem” and “Capitol Cuisine”
• 70 Additional Featurettes (Blu-ray); 69 Additional Special Featurettes (DVD)
• Audio Commentaries, Music Videos and More

The trailer HitFix has up is definitely worth a look, for some glamour shots of the oh-so-pretty art included in the collection, and hints at what some of this new extra content will be. The very quick shot of little Prim running through the forest definitely caught our eye.

prim deleted scenes

Can it be? The mysterious scene of Prim in a tribute costume that we’ve wondered about since seeing some BTS shots from the Hunger Games DVD? Looks like we’ll finally get to see it. (That’s 1 thing to mark off our wish list -woo!).  With 12 never-before-seen deleted scenes from the first movie, we’re really excited about what other surprises are in store. Catching Fire has only one never-before-seen one, so place your guesses on what that is (Morphling painting Peeta’s arm is my bet, though if I can only have one, my heart wants the Katniss & Peeta rooftop scene BECAUSE IT’S IMPORTANT).

Inevitably, there is going to be repetition with the extras if you’ve owned earlier versions of the movies, but it looks like they’re putting in just enough new stuff to make us NEED this.

Yes, we’d already seen this shot of the last day of filming in earlier home entertainment promo material, but it’s too cute to not post. Ahhhhhhh.

last day

More sneak peeks please, things are too quiet.

JJ

Our Blu-Ray Extras Wish List

As we move into February, the release of Mockingjay Part 2 on Digital HD and then Blu-Ray/DVD is inevitably coming soon. Along with the benefit of being able to watch the movie over and over and over again comes the fun of digesting all the extra stuff they add in to entice you to purchase.

We expect the features to be similar to previous Hunger Games movies – audio commentary with Francis and Nina, a few deleted scenes, and lots of behind the scenes featurettes on making the film. The fact that this is the last film makes us a little antsy about what bits they add to this release versus what they choose to add to any ULTIMATE, SUPER-SHINY 4-MOVIE SET that will be coming later in the year, or in 2017, or both. You know they’ve got to hold something back for those later editions. What do they have in that treasure trove to look forward to?

So now we present our not-very-grounded-in-reality wish list of Hunger Games movie (all of ‘em) extras that we’re dying to see at some point:

if_prim_were_a_tribute__by_finsflipper-d5an7iz

Prim, what kind of nightmare sequence was this? Gary, stop holding back.

Those scenes we’ve seen in stills or BTS footage but never the actual footage. Prim in the tribute costume? Gary, what was that about? Katniss and Peeta having a chat in the tribute center. Again Gary, share that with us! Peeta getting his arm painted by the morphling. Francis, please!

Catching Fire Katniss and Peeta rooftop footage. We know something was filmed. We suppose it hit the cutting room floor early because why would you NOT include this footage as a Catching Fire extra? We’ll forgive the quality. Whatever it is, we JUST NEED TO SEE IT.

Revisions to the end of Mockingjay Part 2 after the passing of Philip Seymour Hoffman. We know about the places where footage from other scenes was added. We know Haymitch reading Plutarch’s letter was a change. But we’re curious what the plan was originally, had tragedy not occurred.

1446776391-jennifer-lawrence-liam-hemsworth-hunger-games-mockingjay-2-cast-group-selfie

Don’t tell us you don’t want a cast audio-commentary. Not possible.

Cast audio-commentary. The Francis and Nina audio-commentaries give us some great insight into the making of the movies. But the fandom would completely lose their shit if Lionsgate were ever able to wrangle Jen, Josh, Liam, Woody, Liz et al into doing audio commentaries for the films.  It’s the dream, people. THE DREAM.

Everlark sex. JUST KIDDING, but with all the messages Francis gets about that from fans, we couldn’t NOT mention it. The thought of that actually being filmed makes us feel really awkward, and the inclusion of a scene of that nature would HAVE NOT fit the end of Mockingjay Part 2. If you want that, there’s a whole wide world of fan fiction to explore. BUT I would be really curious to know about the creative decisions that took place in the execution of the actual, final “real or not real” scene. As much as I hate to say it, as more time passes, I find it disappointing. Or maybe I just need to watch the movie again when it comes out and learn to let it all go.

What other extras should we be pleading for?

JJ

 

Visualizing Panem Post-Movies

Now that the entire Hunger Games series has been adapted to film, I’ve been taking stock in how these movies have impacted how I think about the book series. I’ll come right out with it and say it – while I LOVE SO MUCH about the movies, they will never top the books for me. There are some creative choices in the movies that I will adamantly reject forever and try to forget (mainly some parts of The Hunger Games movie and some scenes from the last 25 minutes of Mockingjay Part 2). Hmm, that sounds like fodder for a post, but for a later date.

On the other hand, there are some parts of these movies where everything fell into place and just was so RIGHT that it’s taken over how I visualize certain characters or scenes when I now re-read the books.

Right from the Start: Snow and Coin

SnowCoin

From first casting announcements of both Donald Sutherland and Julianne Moore, I felt really good about how these characters would translate to screen. They look the part and inhabit those roles in a way that fits so well with how I’ve imagined the characters. Donald Sutherland owns Snow so much for me now that I get chills when hearing his voiceover work on orange juice or airline commercials. President Snow wants me to drink orange juice. Yes, sir! I remember being surprised how sympathetic Coin was in Mockingjay Part 1, but it seemed very right for the progression of the character, and how she would have been without the framing of Katniss’s “unreliable narrator” perspective.

Oh. My. Finnick

Finnick cfFor those around the fandom in Catching Fire casting days, you remember what a BIG FREAKING DEAL this was. Lots of names thrown around to play Finnick. Lots of fan favorites. And Sam Claflin, a relative unknown (outside of roles in Snow White & the Huntsman and a Pirates of the Caribbean movie) was chosen. We had time to “get to know him” pre-CF. He was delightful on Twitter. Set photos leaked that were very promising. There was that Capitol Portrait with the pirate look. And then we saw him in the movie and YAY, IT WORKED.  He was Finnick. He is how I see Finnick now. Bravo.

Awesome Surprises From Smaller Roles: Paylor and Jackson

paylor jackson

One of the great, wonderful surprises of the Mockingjay movies was the development of these two characters, who I honestly never paid much attention to, at least during my first reading of the books. So Patina Miller and Michelle Forbes had the benefit of a cleaner slate to build these characters. And build them they did. They project authentic power and leadership so well that you don’t question the news that Paylor will be president, or Jackson’s role in Squad 451 in the slightest. When I re-read Mockingjay, I see those actresses in full costume. They ARE those characters now for me, and it’s enriched the reading experience.

An Interesting Mix: Effie and Haymitch

effie haymitch

The overly bright, colorful world of the Capitol in Suzanne Collins books is intentional. You have to admit though, that the Candy-Land-on-acid-type buildings would have been too distracting to deal with on screen so the “Capitol color” is restricted mostly to the people, not buildings. But with the costume, makeup, and hair styling of Effie, the team really nailed it, and Elizabeth Banks surely took charge of making that character her own. I think the decision to add Effie to District 13 was a good decision for Mockingjay Part 1, but still think Book!Effie follows a more realistic path for that character. I love how Elizabeth Banks gave the character more heart, but I don’t see Effie really changing that dramatically so quickly. In terms of how I visualize the character though, it’s all Elizabeth Banks in her full Capitol glory. Kudos to her and the design team for the creativity and transformation.

Then we come to Haymitch, who I always though of as more “Seam” in looks with darker hair and complexion, more damaged, more dirty, more foul, and much more drunk than we see in the movies. Regrettably, the movies give us a PG-version of Haymitch. Sure, you see him drinking, and his mockery and wit is there, but he’s nowhere near the abrasive drunk he is in the books.  I would have loved to see Woody Harrelson given full reign to make the character more rough. All of that being said, when I read the books, my mind sees Woody Harrelson and that blond wig. Somehow, he’s convinced my brain. He is Haymitch. The mind does what it wants. It’s interesting that this happened, considering this next part.

The Big Three: Love You Guys SO MUCH, but…

What about Katniss, Peeta and Gale? Jennifer Lawrence did a phenomenal job with Katniss. She grabbed hold of that character and owned the performance throughout the four movies. So much so that her voice is very much Katniss’s voice to me. I feel the same way about Josh Hutcherson, and Liam Hemsworth (well at least 90% for Liam, but he got better as the movies went along). For all the wonderful ways they inhabited these roles, my mind still can’t (or won’t) adapt. The way I perceive these three in my mind’s eye when reading the books is much different. The cast is perhaps too physically beautiful, too Hollywood, and for Katniss and Gale, yes, too much of northwestern European ancestry to cancel out how I’ve always imagined the three. It’s nothing against the actors, because those are things they can’t change and these were movies with certain expectations of super-Hollywood-esque attractiveness from the leads.  Katniss and Peeta especially remain murky visual concepts in my head, and I’m fine with that. It’s probably better that way for the two characters who I love the most.

Movies – they mess with your head in unexpected ways.

JJ

 

The Best “Presents” of the Past Year

‘Tis the season of giving, and it looks like many fans got some nice Hunger Games-related presents from friends and family. Tim Palen’s book has inevitably had a spike in sales thanks to the holiday season, along with the adorable Funko Pops, posters, pins and other merch. It makes us think about all the other Panem “presents” we got this year.  The top one, is obviously the actual Mockingjay Part 2 movie, but there was more.  Yes, there definitely were days where Lionsgate played GOOD Santa. Such beautiful days they were.

The release of the Mockingjay Part 1 Peeta/Snow Deleted Scene

We really wanted to see some of the behind the scenes world of the Capitol in Mockingjay Part 1, but we didn’t get much. Happily, there was this deleted scene between Peeta and Snow that was released on the eve of the Digital HD release.

 

After the Blu-Ray release, Lionsgate-Santa was pretty stingy for a while. There was that “trailer” with the logo animation and voiceover which played with Insurgent, but there wasn’t much in the fandom to cheer about until the summer.

 

Katniss chillin on Snow’s throne.

Suddenly we were psyched for the movie again when we got this amazing poster (my personal fave from the Mockingjay Part 2 campaign).

mockingjay part 2 poster throne

 

A fabulous teaser trailer that reminded us again how much we love these movies.

 

After talking and talking about it for months on end, the Hunger Games Exhibition opened. And it was really cool. You just had to get your butt to New York to see it. (Though next year, San Francisco is the lucky host).

On the heels of the Exhibition opening came those cool character posters.

And the Comic Con Panel.

Yes, June and July were very good months in the fandom. Matched only by the month of November with all those premieres. Lots of premieres. And “special screenings“. So many premieres yet we still wanted more.

We certainly have our meltdown moments when things just make us very unhappy, but there’s been a lot of great stuff too. So in this season of reflection, those were the presents that stood out the most.

Freaking out with all of you as we received these cool presents, yes, that’s the good stuff.

JJ

Hunger Games Movie Rewatches Ahead!

You were probably planning on watching the three Hunger Games movies in advance of Mockingjay Part 2, but now we can do it together and be tempted by prizes (451 of them, nice number there).

image

Yes, Lionsgate is organizing movie watching parties for all 3 movies for the next 3 Fridays. We love a big group live tweet, so we’re totally in for a nice fandom-wide rewatch. Hopefully our friends in Europe are night owls so they can tweet along too.

And 451 prizes! We have a suspicion that a lot of these are Mockingjay pins… But we can always use another Mockingjay pin or 4.

We just hope the official account doesn’t get too crazy tweeting about the #feels or other embarrassing fan speak. That language is cool for FANS to use, but when official accounts use it too much, it comes off as cringey and trying way too hard.

Get your popcorn and devices ready!

JJ

The Hunger Games Tribute… And That Non-Tribute That Snuck In

Yesterday was the launch of THE HUNGER GAMES TRIBUTE campaign.  Per Lionsgate, this is “a celebration of the dedicated fans that have made this franchise a global phenomenon.”  Participants get a chance to win tickets to a Global Fan Appreciation Event in Los Angeles in late October (contest is US only but we presume a livestream will make it “global”). To participate, you can go the easy route and just vote in some of the categories, or you can submit your own fan works.

best drawing

We were some of the lucky few who were asked to help whittle down the nominees, and it was tough because there’s a lot of great fan work out there. Each week will have different categories and we’re happy with 4 of the 5 this week.  There’s some awesome fan art whether it’s drawing/painting or people channeling their inner Peeta with the edible variety. And there’s movie scenes to vote for – Best Katniss Moment and Best Action Sequence. It’s all good fandom fun.

best food

Well, it’s nice, fandom fun until we get to the Best Trailer Parody category. Most of these we enjoyed – they exaggerate and poke a little fun at the movies, but harmlessly. The Lego one is creative and lots of fun. “Jon Snow Must Die” is a great crossover if you’re a Game of Thrones fan. Literal Hunger Games, a little biting, sure, but still funny. The Honest Trailers Catching Fire video takes a lot of jabs at the movie but doesn’t come from a hugely mean place.

The Honest Trailers Mockingjay Part 1 video though. Why on earth is this a part of this awards? We have to wonder if anyone at Lionsgate actually watched this video before adding it to the contest. We almost don’t want to bring it to anyone’s attention. Just let it lose and hopefully not another soul watch it. But since it’s up there we have to think it’s getting some good extra exposure by being a part of this campaign, so we’ll address it. It’s so out of place. This video is four + solid minutes of hating on the movie. That it’s boring, a waste of time, Katniss cries too much, etc.  Bottle up all the overblown negative reactions from that movie and put it in a video, that’s this one. You really get the sense that the video makers HATED the movie. Oh, and just for good measure, throw in a gross joke about Jennifer Lawrence’s picture hacking at the end. We can handle people hating on Mockingjay Part 1, some people aren’t as invested in this journey as us, we get it. But adding in Jen’s picture hacking as a joke at the end really pisses us off.

Sure, Lionsgate could argue that “fans” nominated the video, but I’m sure somewhere in the extensive official rules, you’d think Lionsgate & Samsung would put in the ability to have some control over the nominations in cases such as these. And you’d think they wouldn’t want to include a video that makes light of a serious crime that happened to their lead actress. Moreover, Honest Trailers does videos for practically every big movie. It’s not that they are Hunger Games fans, they’re in it for the views. And the views may be why they included that awful joke, but it’s so out of place in a fan celebration.

So go have fun and vote, for anything but THAT.

JJ

The Samsung Exclusive Trailer – Part 2

Here we go again…

We knew that the Samsung partnership with Lionsgate was continuing through Part 2, we just hoped that things WOULD BE DIFFERENT (BETTER) THIS YEAR. This morning, QuarterQuell.org discovered the Samsung users website was announcing another Samsung event at Best Buy stores for the weekend of October 2.

exclu trailer

So let’s break it down. Over the weekend of Oct 2, you’ll be able to go to Best Buy stores to watch the Final Mockingjay Part 2 trailer before it debuts anywhere else. You can also try the Hunger Games Virtual Reality Experience via the Samsung GearVR.

If you were around the fandom last year during San Diego Comic Con time, you’ll remember that Samsung/Best Buy/Lionsgate did a similar type exclusive preview weekend of the Mockingjay Part 1 teaser trailer. Instead of just dropping the FIRST LOOK at Mockingjay Part 1 online for all fans, Best Buy stores with a Samsung Experience shop had the trailer to preview on Samsung tablets. Samsung was able to buy the goodwill of US fans who came to that preview weekend with free movie tickets and Mockingjay pins, but the rest of the world (and the US that didn’t have a special Samsung Experience Store Best Buy nearby) were left out. It created a lot of negativity in the fandom. So much angst. It was not a fun time in the fandom, and made what should have been a happy time – THE FIRST MJ1 TRAILER very sour.

SO WHY ARE THEY DOING THIS AGAIN? WITH THE FINAL TRAILER? There’s plenty of other ways to extend a Samsung/Mockingjay partnership – they even have a good one as a part of this weekend event. The demo of the Hunger Games Virtual Reality Experience could be pretty fun – and the GearVR isn’t even on sale to the public yet so there isn’t any OTHER WAY to see this content. So if you want to give a demo of your snazzy VR device with a new Hunger Games app, that’s cool. We know you can’t make that accessible to everyone in the world. That’s A NICE EXTRA. WHY COULDN’T YOU LEAVE IT AT THAT????

Doing a trailer exclusive like this again – for the FINAL TRAILER is just unnecessary and mean. The response from the fandom last year was clear. Don’t create that ill will again, the week tickets go on sale!  There’s only 2 months left to go. We want happiness in the fandom, not angst. Why knowingly create it?

There’s a lot of question marks in this post, but we still feel like there aren’t enough.

JJ

The Missing Mockingjay Part 2 Soundtrack

It’s less than two months until Mockingjay Part 2, and we’re pretty surprised that there’s been no news about a soundtrack yet. In previous years, we had confirmation of it’s existence and at least the credits song by now. SO WHAT DOES THIS ALL MEAN????

There’s probably only two possibilities here:

  • There will be no “inspired by” original soundtrack this year, just a score and maybe an original song that plays during the credits.
  • There will be a separate “inspired by” original soundtrack and a score, like with the past 3 movies but it’s taking more time than usual to get the details all worked out.

With every day that passes and no news, we’re starting to think that it’s the first option. Moreover, as pointed out by QuarterQuell.org, the latest poster does not list a Music Supervisor (THG and CF had them, and these people were responsible for the original soundtrack albums, MJ1 did not as Lorde “curated” the original soundtrack album).

soundtracksWe were big fans of The Hunger Games and Catching Fire original soundtracks but thought Mockingjay Part 1’s missed the mark. The Mockingjay Part 1 original soundtrack had far lower sales than the two previous as well. (Jennifer Lawrence’s The Hanging Tree was the biggest hit, and that was originally packaged with the theatrical score). Just because we weren’t fans of 1 out of 3 doesn’t mean we wouldn’t be open to a final one… if the music truly captured the tone of the movie. We’re sure lots of fans feel the same way. Would Lionsgate really just say “screw it” to the possibility of extra money for this last installment? Sounds strange to us, but maybe our rioting over the horrible Hanging Tree remix made them decide not to bother?

Granted, if it’s the first option, having the score (which we know will be solid) and a truly fitting end credit song could be enough to really tap into those final movie feels. We’re all about QUALITY over QUANTITY. If the right songs aren’t there, we’d rather they not release an “inspired by” album. We respect that. But ARE THE SONGS REALLY NOT THERE?

Who wants to bet that end credits song gets a dance remix?

JJ