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'Hunger Games' Prequel, 'The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes' is Coming Soon

Rachel Zegler hunger games

London, United Kingdom - March 13, 2022: Rachel Zegler attends the EE British Academy Film Awards 2022 at Royal Albert Hall in London, England. (CubanKite/Shutterstock)

'The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes' Is a Hunger Games Prequel Starring Rachel Zegler

The movie will be released in theaters on November 17, 2023.

Rachel Zegler, the star of the Broadway revival of West Side Story, will play Lucy Gray Baird in The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, the new Hunger Games prequel. Tom Blyth has been cast as young Coriolanus Snow in the movie adaptation of Suzanne Collins' book.

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According to an official summary, the film will follow an 18-year-old Snow several years before his term as President of Panem. "With the 10th annual Hunger Games fast approaching, the young Snow is alarmed when he is assigned to mentor Lucy Gray Baird, the girl tribute from impoverished District 12," continues. "But, after Lucy Gray commands all of Panem's attention by defiantly singing during the reaping ceremony, Snow thinks he might be able to turn the odds in their favor."

"When you read Suzanne's book, Lucy Gray's emotional intelligence, physical agility, and fiercely powerful, determined singing voice shine through. Rachel embodies all of those skills — she is the perfect choice for our Lucy Gray," said Lionsgate Motion Picture Group president Nathan Kahane.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1 and 2 directors Francis Lawrence will return for the fifth installment. He directed three of the four "Hunger Games" movies — Catching Fire, Mockingjay Part One, and Mockingjay Part Two — as well as producers Nina Jacobson and Brad Simpson.

"Like everybody, I first saw Rachel Zegler in 'West Side Story,' and like everybody, I knew I was watching a star who would command the screen for a generation," said Lawrence. "Lucy Gray is a perfect match for her as an actress: the character is bold, independent and defiant, but also vulnerable, emotional and loving. Rachel will make this character unforgettable."

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes will be released in theaters on November 17, 2023, just three years after the release of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2.

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