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'The Hunger Games' filmmakers explain why they chose Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth

April 5, 2011 | 10:58 am

Hutch
In a peculiar addendum to the news release issued Monday announcing Josh Hutcherson as Peeta and and Liam Hemsworth as Gale in the upcoming "The Hunger Games" film, Lionsgate has issued another release with the filmmakers' responses to the choices.

Are they defending their moves or just showering the obligatory praise? Read the comments below and judge for yourselves. (Of course, the real test will come when we get to see the finished product.)

Director Gary Ross: "When I read the book, I thought Peeta would be the hardest role to cast, and I feel so lucky that we found someone who embodies every aspect of such a complex character. I can't wait to work with Josh."

"Hunger Games" author Suzanne Collins: "I was fortunate enough to be in the room with Gary Ross when Josh came in to audition. Three lines into the read I knew he'd be fantastic. Josh totally captured Peeta's temperament, his sense of humor and his facility for language. I'm thrilled to have him aboard."

Producer Nina Jacobson: "Gale is a young man who uses words very sparingly, so the onus was on the actor we cast to capture him by showing, not telling. This was accomplished so beautifully in Suzanne's writing, and Liam was able to translate it so naturally to the screen. At the same time Gale's journey across the three books transforms him, and Liam's performance left no doubt that he would take us there."

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Liam Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson complete the Hunger Games love triangle

--Nicole Sperling

Photo: Josh Hutcherson. Credit: Tyler Shields

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