Sam Claflin, Jena Malone talk 'Catching Fire,' being newbies (Video)
Sam Claflin and Jena Malone are just two of the few new faces audiences will see in "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire."
Claflin plays the charming Finnick Odair, while Malone portrays the sly, axe-wielding Johanna Mason. Both are former Hunger Games victors who are called back into the arena for the 75th Hunger Games along with Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta (Josh Hutcherson).
OTRC.com correspondent Tony Cabrera recently talked to Claflin and Malone about their roles in the film, being the new cast members and what they think they could handle if they were ever thrown into the Hunger Games arena.
Check out the Q&A with Sam Claflin and Jena Malone below.
Being the newbies on this huge franchise -- what was it like?
Malone: "Newbies, young blood, fresh meat, I mean we've had so many terms."
What was it like joining such a huge movie franchise?
Claflin: "It's definitely intimidating to begin with."
Malone: "But it's also kind of like winning the lottery as an actor, I mean, getting to join such an incredible franchise with an amazing book series, an amazing fan base, an amazing cast and you know, having a new director come on board so you don't feel like you have to kind of fit in to something that's already been created. He was kind of a young, fresh energy that was like kind of having a new take on it. It was really so exciting, you know?"
Claflin: "Yeah, we all kind of blended in together very organically. There was no sort of awkwardness to begin with, you know like I'm guessing probably does happen at times, but we all kind of found out place very quickly I think, so it was good. It was very, very organic and natural."
At the beginning of the movie, as an audience member, I was like, 'Who are these two trying to come up in here?' By the end of the movie, I was in love with your characters.
Malone: "At first you were like, 'Who are these two like coming here? Get out."
Claflin: "Get him out. More Katniss!"
No, but you know, people get so attached to what's going on with the games and bringing new blood sometimes is uncomfortable, but by the end, I was sold.
Malone: "Good. Good to hear."
Claflin: "No, thank you! That's what we want to hear! More of you please."
Let's talk about the games because this year, obviously with the clock, the monkeys, the waves, so intense! If you were thrown in there individually, I mean, would you be able to handle it?
Claflin: "No. I mean, I think I'd probably break at the first hurtle. I think I'd in fact run to the cornucopia and say, 'Kill me now.'"
Malone: "I would take my own life. I'd be like, 'Ok, thanks. That was fun.'"
Claflin: "But no, I think it makes for a very interesting and good movie, I think if I'm honest. I think it makes it a lot more intimidating to the characters but also to the audience, you know, not knowing the unpredictable nature of the beast, really."
What part of the game would you say is the hardest? I know you didn't actually play, but if you were to play...
Malone: "What do you mean we didn't play? We were in there. I mean we were doing the heavy lifting. I mean, come on."
Claflin: "I mean, I'd say probably the monkeys. I mean I think that's --"
Malone: "I don't know. I didn't get to be with the monkeys. I just had some blood rain."
Claflin: "It's tough. It's tough. I don't think any of it is easy."
Malone: "Yeah, all of it was pretty bad. I mean, the fog seemed pretty bad. I mean, the idea of just like burning skin, flesh, all of that is like my worst nightmare. Like, I can deal -- just Jena -- can deal with like, yeah, blood and whatever, monkeys Ok, yeah, lightening tree, good, tsunami, got it. "
Claflin: "If I have a surfboard, I'm Ok."
Malone: "But the fact that my skin is like, rotting on me, that's just something I never want to encounter."
Lastly, it being so huge and being signed on to return for "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay" sequels, how are excited are you to go on this adventure for the next, you know, couple of years?
Claflin: "I'm thoroughly, thoroughly excited."
Malone: "We couldn't do it with any better people too. It's such an amazing -- like we've become such a family unit, you know? It's just nice that we get to have like, you know, Christmases together and we're going back at, you know, going to go film at the end of the month, like we're just like keeping at it and it's so nice that we all, you know, we still really love each other."
Claflin: "To delve deeper into the characters that we've sort of start to embrace and start to become you know is obviously a treat for anyone really, especially because of the journey that all the characters between 'Catching Fire' and 'Mockingjay' is quite a drastic one. So, it's all to look forward to."
Check out the trailer for "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" below. The film hits theaters on Nov. 22.
Reporting by Tony Cabrera, correspondent for the nationally syndicated entertainment show "On The Red Carpet" (check for local TV listings). The series is produced by KABC Television near Los Angeles.