Few film roles in recent memory have been as hotly contested as the bow-and-arrow-wielding heroine of Suzanne Collins’ dystopian “Hunger Games.”
A year ago, it seemed every working actress in Hollywood under the age of 25 was auditioning for the role of Katniss Everdeen — a part that eventually went to Oscar nominee Jennifer Lawrence. But director Gary Ross was able to utilize at least one would-be Katniss, namely Isabelle Fuhrman, who plays District 2’s vicious tribute Clove.
“I saw myself as Katniss, but I think everyone does when they read the book, because that’s the character that you related to so much because you’re seeing the whole story through her eyes,” Fuhrman told MTV News recently. “From page one, I was like, ‘Oh, I want to be Katniss so badly.’ That’s what I wrote in [a] letter to Gary, how much I wanted to play Katniss. I went in and actually auditioned for her, but I was too young because I [was] 14.”
Of course, Fuhrman said there are no hard feelings between her and Lawrence, whom she described as the “perfect” Katniss. In fact, landing the role of Clove came with the bonus of learning a new (potentially lethal) skill: knife throwing.
“I’m not going to be modest right now: I’m very good at it, and I’m very proud of that,” Fuhrman said with a grin. “That was so hard to learn how to do, because there is a lot of physics involved with it. The knife goes three knife-lengths each rotation, and [you have to] how much force you want to put into it so it lands with the blade in versus the butt. It was difficult, to say the least, because I did training for about only two weeks before we started shooting, so I had to pick it up pretty quickly.”
You can witness Fuhrman’s nifty knife skills when “The Hunger Games” opens Friday.