Johanna Mason — the deceptively cute and deadly victor from District 7 — was the breakout character from Suzanne Collins’ Catching Fire, the second volume in the Hunger Games trilogy, so the competition for the movie role was long and intense. Luckily (for her and for the franchise), Jena Malone was the last woman standing and won the role.
Here, she mentions the competition in an interview with Glamour magazine:
Glamour: Was your part in The Hunger Games tough to get?
Jena: I know they saw every single actress from here till Tuesday. They wanted to find someone who didn’t just physicalize this character but could also scare people. I don’t know what I did – I guess I just scared the hell out of them.
Um, maybe the producers heard that you dead-lifted 235 pounds during training for Sucker Punch and decided it was safer to give you the job?
Here’s a look at Jena doing publicity — with director Francis Lawrence and co-stars Willow Shields (Prim) and Jeffrey Wright (Beetee) — for the film at San Diego Comic-Con.