Berlin: As the final movie of fantasy blockbuster franchise “The Hunger Games” premieres in Berlin on Wednesday, Hollywood star Donald Sutherland said he hopes the story of revolution will give youngsters hope for “a decent future”.
“This is just the beginning,” said Sutherland, who plays the tyrannical President Snow ruling over a post-apocalyptic state, in the movie adapted from the wildly popular teen novel triology by Suzanne Collins.
“The intent of this — for Suzanne Collins, for me, everyone actually who was involved in this project — is that it would be a catalyst for young people all over the world, everywhere.
“That they would see in it their doom, and the possibility for a decent future.”
The “Hunger Games” series tells the story of bow-and-arrow heroine Katniss Everdeen who battles to survive in a reality TV style life-and-death game in a dystopian future state.
In the final movie of the saga — “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 2”, which has its world premiere in Berlin Wednesday at 1830 GMT — she goes on to lead a rebellion against the totalitarian government.
Hundreds of mostly teenage fans were expected to flock to what is a rare global premiere in the German capital, where the movie will open before heading to screens around the planet from November 18-20.
Many fans are set to be dressed in the costumes of their favourite “Hunger Games” characters, according to comments on a dedicated Facebook site.
The movies, the first of which came out in 2012, have made Jennifer Lawrence the world’s highest-paid actress, with the franchise passing the billion-dollar (910-million-euro) mark at the box office.
Lawrence, 25, topped Forbes magazine’s 2015 list of best-paid actresses at $52 million.
Speaking in Berlin on Tuesday, she said the action heroine she played had deeply inspired her.
“She is kind, she is ruthless, she is independent-minded. She is strong but merciful,” said Lawrence.
“I wish that I could have a percentage of her courage and thoughtfulness. She inspires me in every way.”
– ‘Like a train coming at you’ –
Julianne Moore, who plays the character President Alma Coin, said returning to Germany for some of the shooting had brought back family memories.
One of the locations was Berlin’s gigantic Nazi-era Tempelhof airport terminal, which later became a hub for Cold war era Allied military transports.
“As I rolled up to the set, I kept taking pictures of it to send it to my father, who used to fly into Tempelhof when he was stationed in Frankfurt,” said Moore.
“So, it was interesting to be in a place that is so historical and to be shooting something.”
“I loved Berlin. I went to high school in Frankfurt, and it was a different Germany then, obviously, it was before the Wall came down. So to see the city, which is the centre of so much culture and so alive has been really fun for me.”
Liam Hemsworth, who plays the character Gale Hawthorne, Katniss’s best friend and hunting partner, said some of the action scenes were indeed hair-raising to film.
“We had a tracking camera coming at us,” he said, with the “very strong and quite scary” operator “pushing this thing extremely fast at us, while we are sprinting at it”.
“And I have nightmares about someone, one of us, falling over in front of this… because it is like a train coming at you.
“And if you do fall in front of that, you’re most likely going to die. It was specifically a very dangerous shot,” he said, chuckling. “I don’t think, people realise how dangerous it was.”