If any of you read one of my first articles (a Golden-Age fan-cast of the Avengers), you'll know that I love the golden era of film. The actors and actresses were true stars, and some of my all-time favorites filled the screens during that era. Because of my affinity for classic film and for the current fan-favorite franchise The Hunger Games, I thought that it would be fun to write a fan-cast for the main characters using actors from the 1950s. Without further ado, here's the star of the trilogy herself: Katniss Everdeen! *cues fanfare*
Katniss Everdeen - Juliet Mills
Otherwise known as the older sister of Hayley Mills, Juliet was just as good an actress as her younger sibling. She carries herself with grace, but still has the fiery temper necessary to play Katniss. Though her acting roles were few, Juliet would have been able to play a strong, quiet protagonist fully capable of shooting off an arrow or two, much like Jennifer Lawrence does today.
Gale Hawthorne - Tony Curtis
Known for films like Some Like it Hot, Operation Petticoat, and The Great Race, Tony was the epitome of a smooth operator. Despite his roguish exterior, his characters still have heart, much like Hawthorne. And the similarities between Curtis and Liam Hemsworth are pretty strong. Curtis would have no trouble playing the handsome, caring, and romantic Gale.
Peeta Mellark - Albert Finney
Not as well known as some, Finney still proved to be a solid actor in the sixties and seventies. The Shakespearean performer did not act in the fifties but would have been the right age to play Peeta. His acting cannot be brought into question (he's British for crying out loud!). In all seriousness, the man has a resemblance to Josh Hutcherson and the skill to pull off the second of Katniss' romances.
Caesar Flickerman - Jack Lemmon
One of the greatest comedic actors of his time, Lemmon starred in films like Mr. Roberts, Days of Wine and Roses, as well as co-starring with Tony Curtis in Some Like it Hot and The Great Race. Though he was a humorous character, Lemmon could portray a wide range of emotions, much like the flamboyant news anchor he would be playing. He possesses the classsy yet ridiculous demeanor that Flickerman has to have in order to be effective.
Effie Trinket - Barbara Eden
Barbara is best known for her title role in the TV show Dream of Jeannie. She has a level of vanity to her that would fit Effie to a tee. Outside of film, she's performed in musicals like Annie Get Your Gun and South Pacific. Eden, at her heart, is an entertainer, and that's a trait that would very much play to her favor as the extravagant and showy Miss Trinket.
Haymitch Abernathy - Humphrey Bogart
Straight out of the 'Noir' period of cinema, Bogart is the perfect pick for Haymitch. Bogey was famous for his half-drunk, washed up characters in films like Casablanca and African Queen. Does that ring a bell? It should. Though Bogart doesn't resemble Woody Harrelson, he did win Academy Awards for his acting. His power on the silver screen is indomitable. If you've ever seen this man at all, then you know that he would be a perfect fit for our tribute's mentor.
Prim Everdeen - Hayley Mills
Surprising? Shouldn't be. While it is uncommon for siblings to star as siblings nowadays, it wasn't unheard of back in the fifties. Hayley (of A Parent Trap fame) was an established teen actress and carried herself with the soft, sweet persona that is needed for Prim. However, she also has a strong fiber within that is perfect for Katniss' younger sister. The Mills sisters would be able to play off of each other in a way that few could. Looking at them, the only thing that is noticeably different between Willow Shields and Hayley is the hair.
President Snow - Yul Brynner
Pharaoh, Solomon, Mongkut of Siam...this man was born to play a king. Though the Magnificent Seven star looks nothing like the current Snow (Donald Sutherland), his presence on screen lends itself to a strong tyrant. What Yul also has is an ice cold demeanor that's truly frightening. His cool attitude coupled with a commanding persona would make him the perfect villain for the series.
So what did you think? What I see in this is a strong cast of both super-stars and newcomers, much like our current films. Though a story like the Hunger Games would never have been written in the 1950s, we can only dream what a film would be like with this sort of cast. That's not to say that the cast we do have isn't incredible! As we wait for the closing to the series with this winter's Mockingjay: Part Two, I find it fun to imagine this alter-era 'What if' scenario. Can you think of better picks for these roles? Maybe there's a character I left out that you have the perfect actor for. Let me know in the comments!