At long last, the story of Panem’s revolution is finally coming to a close when “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 2” hits theaters on Nov. 20. As fans of the franchise’s third movie know, it left audiences to marinate for an entire year on a massive cliffhanger that will need to be resolved in the finale.
The cliffhanger centered on Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson), who has been the subject of fan speculation ever since “Mockingjay, Part 1” ended. Although he’s had to remain tight-lipped for a long time about how the movie will handle one of the book’s more difficult moments, the actor claims that this is one of the things he was excited for when he initially took the role. Speaking at a red carpet event for the premiere of his short film “The Rusted,” the actor talked about his character’s journey.
“That’s what I loved so much about the books was this moment for Peeta when he’s in the darkness and you’re not sure if he’s going to come back or not,” the 23-year-old star said. “I’m really excited, I just saw the final cut a few weeks ago and I’m really happy with how it turned out. I can’t wait for people to see how it happens and how that cliffhanger ends.”
For those of you who need a refresher on the heartbreaking moment that “Mockingjay, Part 1” left off on, it was a dark time for Peeta. [SPOILER ALERT] After not being rescued from the arena by the District 13 rebels at the end of “Catching Fire,” Peeta spent the majority of “Mockingjay, Part 1” as a slave/mouthpiece for the Capitol. It wasn’t until Gale (Liam Hemsworth) helped launch a daring escape plan that Peeta was finally brought to the safety of District 13. Unfortunately, once he’s back it becomes clear that President Snow (Donald Sutherland) was doing a lot more than using Peeta for publicity. Apparently, he was torturing him and brainwashing him into believing he has to kill the love of his life, Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence).
With the fourth movie in the franchise promising to close out both this plotline and every other burning question fans have left, the next question becomes: What's next for the cast?
Hutcherson's latest project, “The Rusted” is a 20-minute film about a brother and sister, played by him and his “Hunger Games” co-star Jena Malone. They are trying to renovate their childhood home into a recording studio following their mother’s death. The film takes a turn into an intense psychological thriller when strange happenings inside the house start to bring childhood trauma to light. The film can be seen online for free as part of Canon’s branded “Project Imagination: The Trailer,” which saw Hutcherson and famed director Ron Howard choose a winning trailer submission to inspire a short film. The project seems to have given the young actor the directing bug, as he told audiences at the premiere that his next project after “The Hunger Games” will likely be directing a different short film that he wrote.