Lenny Kravitz on Cinna’s Sexuality

| March 15, 2012 | 8 Comments More

Cinna and Katniss in The Hunger Games

Movieline spoke with Lenny Kravitz, and asked him a lot of questions about The Hunger Games – specifically about Cinna’s sexual orientation.

When it comes to Cinna, though, maybe given the fact that he’s a fashionista some readers of the books infer that he’s gay, even though his sexuality remains ambiguous.
Right, they assume. And that was a question: How far do we take it? If we had gone the outrageous route, it would have been just another stereotypical statement. Immediately I’m thinking science fiction, crazy costumes, this sort of possibly effeminate costumes. I started thinking Chris Tucker in The Fifth Element, because I didn’t know where Gary was going stylistically. Then when I got to the set I thought, this is really smart. The look of the Capitol and the way everybody dressed, it was real – it wasn’t this outrageous costumey stuff. There were a lot of outrageous colors and big statement, but there were a lot of old things and new things mixed, just like it is now. We’re in 2012 and we’re still wearing clothes that look like clothes. We’re not wearing silver space suits with helmets and all that… well, some of us are. [Laughs]

Did you take inspiration in terms of Cinna’s style or carriage from any real life figures?
I thought about Yves Saint Laurent and Tom Ford, who are both very inspiration design characters for me. And both of them are kind of right down the middle and very classically dressed, not say, like a Galliano or someone who is more outrageous and flamboyant in dress. That was the way we decided to play him and I think that was definitely the right choice.

So then: Is Cinna gay?
I have no idea. I have no idea. I played him right in the middle, and one of the inspirations is a friend of mine, actually, who I grew up with. He’s bisexual and you could think he’s gay, you could think he’s straight, you’re not really sure. It’s very subtle. You wouldn’t know it, but Cinna’s speech patterns and the way he enunciates was kind of based on this person that’s just a friend of mine, who I thought was a good example.

It’s worth noting that the way you play Cinna, what stands out a bit more than in the books is that he comes off as more of a strategist than a stylist. Was that an important element to highlight?
Most definitely. When people think at first, ‘So, what is Cinna?’ I play a stylist, but it’s hard to just say I play a stylist. What does that mean? He’s not that, he’s trying to help Katniss make an impression and he’s trying to save her life, and he wants people to like her because that’s part of the game. So that’s a good word, strategist.

You can read the entire interview at Movieline.

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Comments (8)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Just because a man is a stylist, doesn’t necessarily mean he is homosexual. Cinna never came across as gay to me as I was reading the book…he just seemed normal. Compared to the rest of the capitol, Cinna is anything but gay. It doesn’t hurt to portray him as bisexual though. Anyone can be bisexual and you’ll never know unless they tell you because it’s so subtle. Their casting director made a good choice in choosing Lenny, he seems so down to earth. Exactly how I would picture Cinna. (:

  2. Love of Peeta says:


  3. NerdGuy says:

    It doesn’t really matter though. Some gay people act as straight as can be minus what happens in the bedroom and some straight people act really flamboyant, but like women. Honestly his sexuality has nothing to do with what kind of person Cinna is.

  4. President Snow says:

    Here’s my question: Why does it matter either way?

  5. Sevilen Robberts says:

    Jack Sparrow has guyliner and a thing for hats. Cinna just has oober guyliner and a thing for clothing.

    Did anyone think Jack Sparrow was gay? (Don’t reply to that.)

    Either way, Cinna never really came off gay to me.

  6. clove says:

    @President Snow: I totally agree. I don’t really see why it matters much. It’s not like that is going to affect the movie, or books, in any major way anyways. I never thought of him being gay, I just didn’t really think about that, but i don’t think he is.

  7. I’m reading The Hunger Games right now, and yes, I strongly feel the character of Cinna IS gay – unless you’re in denial, you can’t miss it. I’m glad that Lenny got the hint and based him on a bisexual friend. I find that you people in the United States are still so afraid of the sexual orientation issue. In Canada, we are not and have had same-sex marriage in our entire country for a number of years. Yes, Cinna is gay. Get used to it and don’t be afraid of it!

  8. Kate says:

    @Dave from Canada

    Sorry, but where exactly in the book does it say Cinna likes guys? I’m assuming you inferred that from his spot-on fashion taste and his fabulous gold eyeliner. Sorry, but that stuff really doesn’t define your sexuality. One of my guy friends totally seems gay, from his layered, conditioned hair to his impeccable loafers. He’s been known to wear concealer on occasion. And he’s straight. One of my gay friends doesn’t know a thing about fashion. The point is, Cinna never had a love interest, so we actually don’t know if he’s gay or not. Saying he is based on his “personality” might make you feel all accepting and gay-friendly, but what you’re really doing is encouraging stereotypes. People are all unique, and we don’t all conform to a few archetypes.

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