With Mockingjay Part 2 being released at theatres and the series drawing to a close, Blastr caught up with director Francis Lawrence to discuss creating the final movie, the epilogue and adding new material.
*Warning spoilers below*
Blastr: A lot of fans balked at Suzanne Collins’ last book, Mockingjay, being split into two films, labeling it a cash grab to keep the franchise going. However, you wanted it to happen. What was your reasoning?
Francis: One of the reasons the book was split into two was it was very clear there was too much story in the book for one movie. We all, especially Suzanne, understood that there were two very distinct character arcs and dramatic questions. One was, will we get Peeta back? And will I become the Mockingjay, with its own themes to explore in terms of propaganda. This one is, will I kill Snow, which is very different from the first one.
Blastr: With Mockingjay Part 2, you are not only presenting the climax to the entire story, but you are landing the themes that are core to Collins’ book. For you, what was most exciting about crafting this installment?
Francis: The thing I really enjoy about this movie, and part of the story, is that it’s where everything comes together. The themes come together, the visual ideas come together, all the character who remain come together. One of the things that happens is the idea of war — which is the overall picture of the movies — and the idea of the arena come together. The blending of real war and war in the Capitol being the new arena was interesting. It also presented new challenges for us, because it’s a strange idea that these sort of defenses would be used in war. Some of the new material in the movie, which was really fun to develop for Snow (Donald Sutherland), is the idea of, what does a guy in Snow’s position do when you are sitting in the throne of a crumbling empire? We use that to play into the idea of turning war into entertainment while it’s all crumbling around you.
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