Lionsgate announced Tuesday (July 10) that the final installment of Suzanne Collins' best-selling series, "Mockingjay," will be split into two movies, with Part 1 to be released November 21, 2014, followed by Part 2 on November 20, 2015.
Talk of a two-part finale (reminiscent of the "Harry Potter" and "Twilight" approaches) began long before "The Hunger Games" ever bowed in theaters, though producer Nina Jacobson told MTV News during the film's red-carpet premiere that the split was far from a foregone conclusion and would be based on the first film's reception.
"Hopefully, people love this movie enough to demand the next one," she said. "Go make that one. Figure out what to do from there."
Audiences obviously embraced the dystopian tale of teenager Katniss Everdeen (played by Jennifer Lawrence) and her fight for survival against 23 other children in the titular televised death match; the movie has grossed more than $400 billion domestically. The question now is: How and where will the third novel be split?
Collins' "Mockingjay," released August 2010, follows heroine Katniss and her fellow District 12 victor Peeta Mellark (played by Josh Hutcherson) as they fight in an uprising to usurp the capricious Capitol and its head, President Snow.
Earlier this week, Lionsgate announced that Oscar-winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman would join the cast as Head Gamemaker Plutarch Heavensbee, a pivotal role that appears in both "Catching Fire" and "Mockingjay." The series' second film, "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire," is slated to begin production in the fall with new director Francis Lawrence at the helm. The movie will hit theaters November 23, 2013.
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