When it comes to favorite novels, fans can be a picky bunch. There are things that work better in books than in movies, and vice versa, but then there are the readers to contend with. What better way to deal with blowback than heading it off at the pass?
That's what "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" director Francis Lawrence has done in Entertainment Weekly, revealing that he worked with author Suzanne Collins to suss out what would have to be changed or left out for the adaptation.
Let's start with the small stuff: Peeta knows how to swim. In the book, Peeta's inability to swim puts him at a distinct disadvantage when the Quarter Quell kicks off with the tributes being tossed into a jungle environment on floaties. Josh Hutcherson explained, "The option is for either me drowning or sitting there like a cat batting my paw into the water. ... Either way the visual is horrible." Or adorable!
Other changes include cutting some smaller characters, like District 8's Bonnie and Twill, and District 12's Darius.
Producer Nina Jacobson told EW, "It's as agonizing for us to lose things from the book as it is for a fan. ... But you know what? If you have to give up something in order to give more time to Katniss and Gale or to Effie as she starts to feel a conscience, you make the sacrifices in order to serve the characters and themes that are more essential."
Sometimes, you just have to kill your darlings.