First it was Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, then The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn and now it’s the turn of Mockingjay, the final installment in the Hunger Games series, to also get the double feature film treatment.
That’s right, it’s going to be double the hunger and double the child-killing for our heroine Katniss Everdeen. More importantly though, double the box office for Lionsgate!
While it has been rumoured since last year June, when allusion was made to a “four-part series” during an investors’ conference call, this is the first official confirmation from the studio that the film will be split. Lionsgate also set the release date for the two films, which will now occupy the now-vacant November spot usually held by the Twilight franchise on their calendar. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 will be arrowing into cinemas on November 21, 2014, while The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 will (probably) be smashing box offices on November 20, 20115.
There’s just one problem. I really don’t think that Suzanne Collins’ final book should be done as two films. The book is not even that long and the first 60% was essentially just talking heads as things got setup, and then the last half kicked off on a non-stop, breakneck, whirlwind tour of underage death and carnage There really doesn’t appear to be a good point in the narrative structure to split the book and still give the first part enough meat to its story.
This was the same problem that Lionsgate faced with Twilight: Breaking Dawn and yet they split that anyway, resulting in a Part 1 that even the Twi-hards thought was boring. There’s no doubt in my mind that unlike in the case of Harry Potter, where they just had far too much narrative to get through in one film, that this decision is driven by none other than a desire by Lionsgate to keep their latest cash cow mooing away, when it should already have been put down with an arrow to the eyeball.
Last Updated: July 11, 2012