Well, we may be saying goodbye to director Gary Ross for The Hunger Games sequel Catching Fire, but Jennifer Lawrence is coming back! Jennifer is reprising her role as both Katniss Everdeen and Mystique in X-Men.
However, FOX and LIONSGATE had previously been in a disagreement over which film, Catching Fire or X-Men, would have the rights to shoot with Jennifer in the fall. But it seems that is all cleared up because, as sources tell The Hollywood Reporter, X-Men has been set to start production in January which opens up the fall for Caching Fire.
Sources tell The Hollywood Reporter that Fox is informing talent agencies Thursday that the studio plans to begin shooting its in-development sequel to X-Men: First Class in January. That means Lionsgate could move forward with an August-September start date for the Hunger Games sequel Catching Fire without a conflict for Lawrence, who is set to star in both.
As THR previously reported, tensions between the studios were running high last month as Fox was considering filming the Matthew Vaughn-directed X-Men follow-up in the fall, potentially conflicting with Lionsgate’s plans for Hunger Games. Fox, which cast Lawrence as the shape-shifting character Mystique in Summer 2010, months before Lionsgate chose her to play Katniss Everdeen in March 2011, has the right to exercise the option on her contract if it conflicts with another Hunger. That’s true even though Lawrence is part of a large ensemble in X-Men but is the clear star of the Hunger franchise.
Fox’s acquiescence isn’t a total win for Liosngate. One source says the Hunger Games studio would have liked to “hold” all the actors for seven months in connection with shootingCatching Fire. But that lengthy demand (typical holds are months shorter) is said to have been dropped amid complaints by interested parties, including Fox.