Director Gary Ross and “The Hunger Games” movie franchise evidently have parted ways.
Ross said in a statement that his schedule would not permit him to work on the next movie, “Catching Fire,” to be released next year, although Entertainment Weekly noted speculation about disagreements between him and Lionsgate.
We’ve interviewed a number of cast members recently who all had positive things to say about Ross. Liam Hemsworth, who played Katniss‘ friend Gale, talked about Ross’ “positive energy.” Sharon Morris, who played a game master named Lucia, noted that her character didn’t officially have a name until Ross came up with “Lucia” because it sounded like something out of ancient Roman times.
“He’s a very excitable type director,” she said. “He came up with the name on the fly.”
Steve Coulter, who also plays a game master, said Ross’ enthusiasm sold him on the part. After he auditioned, he said, Ross opened his arms and said, “Do you want to be in my movie?”
So, Ross was a big hit with the cast. And the movie’s box office success has been extraordinary. But the reviews?
“The Hunger Games” is pretty much a disaster—disjointed, muffled, and even, at times, boring, wrote The New Yorker. “Ross shoots in a style that I have come to despise. A handheld camera whips nervously from one angle to another; the fragments are then jammed together without any regard for space. You feel like you’ve been tossed into a washing machine.”
We have to agree. Five minutes into the movie, it already had taken on a certain “Blair Witch” quality. When it wasn’t jerking around the camera felt THISCLOSE to the actors’ faces, which seemed to cheat the audience out of the sweep of scenery at times.
What did you think? Did you love how Ross directed “The Hunger Games” or are you looking forward to a new look in the next film?
- Jennifer Brett/The Buzzfirstname.lastname@example.org