After about a month of more of less assuming he’s in, Lionsgate has officially announced via their Twitter feed that Philip Seymour Hoffman will play gamesmaster Plutarch Heavenbee in The Hunger Games sequel Catching Fire. Hoffman is the second new cast member to be officially cast after Jena Malone signed on the dotted line last week.
The character serves the same function as Wes Bentley’s character in the first movie, who, as you may remember, was given a plate of berries at the end of The Hunger Games. Heavenbee is brought in to design the 75th anniversary Hunger Games, which President Snow (Donald Sutherland) hopes will quell the rising rebellion in the Panem by making it an all-star edition of the Hunger Games with returning champions, including first movie winners, Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta (Josh Hutcherson).
Here’s the synopsis:
THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE begins as Katniss Everdeen has returned home safe after winning the 74th Annual Hunger Games along with fellow tribute Peeta Mellark. Winning means that they must turn around and leave their family and close friends, embarking on a “Victor’s Tour” of the districts. Along the way Katniss senses that a rebellion is simmering, but the Capitol is still very much in control as President Snow prepares the 75th Annual Hunger Games (The Quarter Quell) – a competition that could change Panem forever.
The next big casting news will another returning champion, Finnick Odair. Submissions are now open as to who might play this part in Catching Fire.
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is scheduled to open November 22, 2013.