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A week after there were reports that Sucker Punch actress Jena Malone was being considered for the role of Johanna Mason in the Hunger Games sequel Catching Fire, it has been confirmed that she is in negotiations with Lionsgate to star in the film.
Last week, we reported that Malone is being considered for the role. Entertainemnt Weekly first learned that Malone, who most recently starred in the History Channel’s Hatfields & McCoys mini-series, was being considered for the part, instead of other actress Mia Wasikowska and model Zoe Aggeliki.
Then on Tuesday, sources for The Hollywood Reporter confirmed that she is in the early stages of negotiations to play Johanna Mason, a character that also appears in Suzanne Collins’ final Hunger Games novel, Mockingjay.
Johanna Mason is an ax-wielding tribute and a previous winner of the Hunger Games from District 7. She works with Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson) in another battle in the arena. Her first appearance in the Catching Fire novel features her stripping down to make Katniss uncomfortable.
Catching Fire is being directed by Water for Elephants director Francis Lawrence, who is taking over for Hunger Games director Gary Ross. It is set to start production in September. Lionsgate has scheduled a Nov. 22, 2013 release for the film. Stars Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth will be returning.
Malone’s other films include Contact, Into The Wild and Pride & Prejudice. Her other upcoming projects include A Doll’s House and Lonely Hunter.