How Mockingjay’s Director Got an Insecure Jennifer Lawrence to Sing

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 9,707
    Director Francis Lawrence has the big job of overseeing the final two films in the Hunger Games franchise, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2. Francis revealed why the shoots felt like “college” and described how he tried to help his leading lady, Jennifer Lawrence, through one of her toughest days on set.

    Allie Merriam: Between failing in three different countries and getting Jennifer Lawrence to sing, bringing the Mockingjay book to the big screen was not an easy task.

    Francis Lawrence: It's a pretty complex movie and there is a lot of digital effects and a lot of complicated sequences, but I think that Katniss' character was a really tricky thing to watch over this time. She is in quite an emotional state and she is pretty damaged emotionally and psychologically and physically, and to sort of track that through her, through her character or through this movie I think was one of the trickiest things on the job.

    Allie Merriam: One part of this film Katniss actually sings and I know Jennifer Lawrence had a little trouble getting to a point where she was comfortable singing, how did you help her with that?

    Francis Lawrence: I think she was never comfortable singing. It wasn't really bargaining. I think she just knew that she had to do it. So she kind of begrudgingly did it, but actually we just tried to ease her in and I could just tell, all I could do is tell her she was doing a great job and she really was. It was just something she felt really vulnerable about. She has really fantastic sounds to her voice and she does it perfectly for what we needed for Katniss, and she shouldn't have been as insecure about it as she was.

    Allie Merriam: You said that making this film and especially finishing it I think on set reminded you a little of college, how was that so?

    Francis Lawrence: Well, I think because these jobs were out of town jobs and almost everybody that worked on the movies, live in LA or other places, so we were all in strange places in Atlanta and Paris and Berlin, and we also shot them all so close together. So for some of these people, this has been three or four years of their lives as a group working together almost constantly. And in really close quarters because you're out of town, so going out all the time, hanging out and sharing apartments and for the younger ones, especially with Jane, Josh and Liam, this is the age you're in college. And so it really was, it felt like graduation when we finished it. There was sort of a relief that you're done, you can go home. But there is real sadness for the fact that we are not going to be around each other as much.