Woody Harrelson, who plays Haymitch in The Hunger Games movie has told the LA Times that the essence of the book will be in the movie. And he adds that he plays Haymitch with humor.
There are several ways to go with a wizened mentor: You could play washed-up for drama or for laughs. Woody Harrelson, who incarnates Abernathy in Gary Ross’ upcoming film adaptation, said he pushed in the direction of laughs as often as possible.
“It was my objective to give the character as much comedy as I could without it seeming not to fit,” Harrelson told 24 Frames. “I tried to take a certain comedic aspect and give a sense, through that, that he’s been through a lot and is anesthetizing himself as a result of that.”
Harrelson goes on to explain that when he was playing Haymitch straight, he tried to put a bit of an original twist on the character.
“I didn’t want it to feel like just because he’s an alcoholic that he would look just like any bum on the street. So there are things that go against your expectation of what a washed-up guy would look like,” he said, somewhat cryptically.
And he says there’s no need for fans to worry:
“The essence of the book is going to be in the film,” Harrelson said, adding, “It’s something we’ve never seen before. We have the best wardrobe, the best costume people, the best makeup people. There’s a level of commitment to innovation that [filmgoers] have never seen. I think they’re going to be very pleasantly surprised by it.”
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