After months of speculation, and the start date for production on The Hunger Games: Catching Fire drawing closer, we finally have the answer to who will be playing the very hot and cocky tribute Finnick Odair: it’s Sam Claflin! He’s been the rumored front-runner for a while now, but Lionsgate finally made it official today by releasing a statement. You probably recognize him from Snow White and the Huntsman, where he played the arrow wielding Prince William. He was also in the Pirates of the Carribean: On Stranger Tides, the fourth installment of the franchise. Both of these films point to the fact that he can pull off playing the former winner of the Hunger Games, a feat Odair pulled off when he was fourteen.
If you’ve read the books (which I highly suggest that you do at some point in your life – they are awesome), then you know a little about the character of Finnick Odair. As the new victors of the Hunger Games, Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson) are taken on a tour of the twelve districts. There they meet other former winners, including the charismatic Odair who hails from District Four. But it’s not just on the tour that they are forced into the company of other tributes, when the Quarter Quell (the 75th anniversary of the Hunger Games) is announced it means entering into the arena and fighting against them. Before I give away more important details (I read the last two books so fast that I have trouble seperating them), here’s the official press release:
Lionsgate and the filmmakers of THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE are pleased to announce that Sam Claflin has been cast in the role of Finnick in the much anticipated film adaptation of Suzanne Collins’ worldwide smash hit novel Catching Fire. Charasmatic and clever, Finnick was a District 4 Hunger Games victor when he was fourteen.
After breaking out in his role as the romantic lead in last year’s PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: ON STRANGER TIDES, Claflin starred in the box office smash SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN playing Prince William alongside Kristen Stewart, Charlize Theron and Chris Hemsworth. He recently finished filming THE QUIET ONES opposite Jarred Harris, and MARY & MARTHA, in which he co-stars with Hilary Swank.
THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE begins as Katniss Everdeen has returned home safe after winning the 74th Annual Hunger Games along with fellow tribute Peeta Mellark. Winning means that they must turn around and leave their family and close friends, embarking on a “Victor’s Tour” of the districts. Along the way Katniss senses that a rebellion is simmering, but the Capitol is still very much in control as President Snow prepares the 75th Annual Hunger Games (The Quarter Quell) – a competition that could change Panem forever.
THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE will be directed by Francis Lawrence, and produced by Nina Jacobson’s Color Force in tandem with producer Jon Kilik. The novel on which the film is based is the second in a trilogy that has sold more than 50 million books in print and digital in the U.S. alone.
I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to see Finnick wield a trident (his weapon of choice in the arena) and walk around shirtless (he’s a confident guy…). Sam Claflin should do a great job bringing both of those aspects to the character. Now, if you’re anything like me you’ve had some trouble keeping up with all the different cast members, especially with all the new faces showing up as tributes. So I’ve written up a little handy dandy guide to help you out. It includes the character, the actor playing them, and a few things you might recognize that person from. Yeah, yeah, you’re welcome.
Finnick Odair – Sam Claflin (Snow White and the Huntsman, Pirates of the Carribean: On Stranger Tides)
Gloss – Alan Ritchson (Smallville, Blue Mountain State, Fired Up!)
Johanna Mason – Jena Malone (Saved!, Pride and Prejudice, Into the Wild, Sucker Punch)
Plutarch Heavensbee – Philip Seymour Hoffman (Twister, Red Dragon, Along Came Polly, Capote, Doubt, Moneyball)
Wiress – Amanda Plummer (Pulp Fiction, Hercules)
Enorbia – Meta Golding (Criminal Minds, Surrogates)
Mags – Lynn Cohan (Sex and the City, Across the Universe, Law & Order)
Cashmere – Stephanie Leigh Schlund (The Last Song)
Brutus – Bruno Gunn (Bad Teacher, Mickey Blue Eyes, Herbie Fully Loaded)
Seeder – Maria Howell (The Blind Side, Daddy’s Little Girl’s)
Chaff – E. Roger Mitchell (S.W.A.T., Diary of a Mad Black Woman)
Head Peacekeeper Romulus Thread – Patrick St. Espirit (Sons of Anarchy, Smokin’ Aces)
All of these people will be joining original cast members from The Hunger Games, Jennifer Lawrence (Katniss), Josh Hutcherson (Peeta), Liam Hemsworth (Gale), Elizabeth Banks (Effie Trinket), and Woody Harrelson (Haymitch Abernathy). The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is set to be released November 22, 2013.
How do you feel about Sam Claflin in the role of Finnick Odair? Do you think he’ll be a good fit for the hunky tribute?