Lionsgate is currently in the process of putting together a big screen adaptation of The Hunger Games, the first in a series of young adult novels by Suzanne Collins that they are hoping will spawn another breakout movie franchise. The fact that this is being billed as “the next Twilight” is keeping my interest level fairly low, but I have to admit that the concept actually sounds pretty cool. The story takes place in a post-apocalyptic world where the government holds a televised competition every year that forces kids from each district to fight to the death. Now it looks like they are in negotiations with a director for the first movie, and apparently they have settled on… the guy who did Seabiscuit? Right. That makes plenty of sense!
Gary Ross is also known for directing Pleasantville and he co-wrote Big, but as of yet, he hasn’t done anything particularly action-oriented. He has, however, been in the running for a few other tentpole films, most notably Marvel’s Venom spin-off. He also apparently did a rewrite on Spider-Man 4 before Sam Raimi left and the whole thing fell apart.
It was reported last week that the short list of directors for The Hunger Games was down to Ross, Sam Mendes, David Slade, and Andrew Adamson, among others, but now they’ve stopped meeting with candidates and they’re just hammering out the details with Ross. He’s not the most exciting choice in the world, but at least we know he is a competent filmmaker. The script for The Hunger Games was penned by Suzanne Collins with a rewrite by Billy Ray (Breach, State of Play). What do you think, will this be a big hit for Lionsgate and are you interested in it?