'The Hunger Games' could've been 'hokey,' Woody Harrelson says (Video)
Woody Harrelson, who plays Haymitch Abernathy in the 2012 movie "The Hunger Games," says the movie could've ended up "hokey" had it not been for director Gary Ross.
"It's great to have such a great filmmaker doing this because you could have gotten someone who just made something that's like hokey and [with] lots of cuts," he told OnTheRedCarpet.com. "But there's such heart and such beautiful rich texture and visuals. I think it's really well done."
The movie is based on a popular book series by Suzanne Collins and hit theaters on March 23. The characters live in a post-apocalyptic North America, which is now called Panem. The Hunger Games are an annual televised event put on by the government in the Capitol, where a boy and a girl from 12 districts fight to the death.
"If people don't like anything, I'll say Gary Ross [was to blame]," Harrelson joked. "If they like it, I'll say, 'Yeah, I did that.'"
"I'm with you on that," Kravitz said. "Gary had a clear vision of this film and he loved the book and he was very respectful to the story and I think he brought it to life in a way that people can really digest this and identify with it. It feels real. It doesn't feel zany, sci-fi."
Ross previously directed the movies "Seabiscuit" and "Pleasantville" and is the screenwriter of "The Hunger Games." He also wrote films such as "Big" with Tom Hanks, "Lassie" and "The Tale of Despereau."
The main star of the film is Jennifer Lawrence, who plays heroine Katniss Everdeen and gets involved in a love triangle with her childhood crush Gale, portrayed by Liam Hemsworth, and her fellow warrior Peeta, played by Josh Hutcherson. Lenny Kravitz plays Everdeen's stylist, Cinna.
Lawrence, a 21-year-old Kentucky native, rose to fame after earning an Oscar nomination for her role in the 2010 movie "Winter's Bone" and co-starred with Kravitz's daughter Zoe in the 2011 film "X-Men: First Class."
"She really connects to the true line of the character," Harrelson told OnTheRedCarpet.com. "She's in almost every frame in the movie. She really has to have that emotional continuity throughout and that build. She's a major talent."
"Jennifer is beautiful," Kravitz added. "She's a great actress. She's a beautiful human being and that shines through all of her roles. I've been a fan since I saw 'Winter's Bone' and I got to know her personally when my daughter brought her home because they did 'X-Men' together. But I think she has such a bright future."
Reporting by Cari Skillman of KABC Television, which produces the entertainment show "On The Red Carpet" (check for local TV listings).