Entertainment

Rachel Zegler to star in ‘Hunger Games’ prequel

NEW YORK – Fresh off her step forward function in Steven Spielberg’s “West Side Story,” Rachel Zegler will megastar in Lionsgate’s deliberate “Hunger Games” prequel.

The studio introduced Tuesday that Zegler will play Lucy Gray Baird in “The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes,” an extension of the “Hunger Games” saga that takes position many years sooner than the adventures of Jennifer Lawrence’s Katniss Everdeen. Katniss performed within the 74th Hunger Games; Baird shall be part of the tenth Hunger Games.

Susan Collins, whose books had been tailored into the $3 billion blockbuster franchise, in 2020 printed a prequel novel upon which “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” is based totally. In the movie, Lucy Gray Baird, a tribute from the impoverished District 12, sings in a pivotal second throughout the reaping rite. Zegler stars reverse Tom Blyth, who performs the 18-year-old Coriolanus Snow.

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“Our casting team, Deb Zane and Dylan Jury, spearheaded an exhaustive search, reading hundreds of actors in search of our perfect Lucy Gray. That search ended when Rachel Zegler blew the roof off with her depth and breadth of talent as an actor, singer, and performer,” said producer Nina Jacobson in a statement. “Rachel is utterly compelling; just like Lucy Gray, her voice and charisma command the stage while her inner strength and humanity transform those around her.”

Lionsgate is to unencumber the film in theaters Nov. 17, 2023.

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