It didn’t take long, but Lionsgate has found their director for Catching Fire.
Francis Lawrence, whose latest feature film project was 2010’s Water For Elephants, will reportedly be offered a deal to direct the second movie in The Hunger Games’ franchise.
This is, of course, after Gary Ross, walked away from returning to direct the next movie in the feature film adaptation of the Suzanne Collins trilogy. Ross, whom Lionsgate wanted back to carry the lucrative franchise, bowed out because for creative reasons, deeming the stringent production deadlines for the movie an insufficient amount of time to properly create something he’d be happy with.
Catching Fire already has a November 22, 2013 release date, which means a rigorous production schedule later this year. Complicating things is the fact that star Jennifer Lawrence has a prior commitment to film the X-Men: First Class sequel starting in January.
Francis Lawrence has a good deal of eclectic directing/production experiences, having helmed 2007’s I Am Legend as well as 2005′s Constantine. His career started in music videos though and he’s directed some memorable ones like Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance” (for which he won a Grammy) and Beyonce’s “Run The World (Girls).” Both videos featured an interesting and novel creative direction, something that will be necessary to bring Panem back to life.