Philip Seymour Hoffman officially joins 'Catching Fire' as Plutarch Heavensbee
It came as a little bit of a surprise when Philip Seymour Hoffman was offered the role of Plutarch Heavensbee in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, because he's not somebody we see take on mainstream blockbuster roles very often. Sure, he played the bad guy pretty well in Mission: Impossible III, but that's really about it. For nearly a month we didn't really hear anything about it, as the casting focus switched over to characters Finnick Odair and Johanna Mason. With Jena Malone recently locking up the latter part, Lionsgate has now confirmed that Hoffman is officially on board as well.
I'm sure our resident Hunger Games critic, Rocky Hadadi, will have something more to say about this and it likely won't be positive. To me, this is an inspired move that puts one of the finest actors working today in a role that is going to be extremely important for the next two flicks. Plutarch is the new Gamemaker who takes over after the orchestrated demise of Seneca Crane. Plutarch presides over the 75th Hunger Games, known as the Quarter Quell, which forces a number of past victors back into competition. There's considerably more to him than meets the eye, though. He's a complex character, and Hoffman has proven time and time again that those are his stock 'n trade.
There are still a number of semi-crucial roles to be filled, but the attention will likely shift back to casting Finnick. After names like Taylor Kitsch, Garrett Hedlund, and Armie Hammer were mentioned, it appears there are no frontrunners at this point. With filming set to begin in the fall, expect to see a flurry of activity in the coming days, especially with Comic-Con right around the corner. Catching Fire is due to hit theaters on November 22nd 2013.