Josh Hutcherson Gets Even a Better Shape to Play Peeta in Catching Fire

Josh Hutcherson talks to USA Today and mentioned briefly on how he prepared the role of Peeta in The Hunger Games sequel, Catching Fire.

“I’m getting in even better shape this time around,” Hutcherson tells USA TODAY about the film, which begins production next month.
At the start of the follow-up to the wildly successful The Hunger Games, Peeta returns home a victor in the 74th gladiatorial event.

“After the games, Peeta would have been taking care of himself physically. And he’s gone back to the village and is able to eat healthy,” says Hutcherson. “So I’ve been training and getting ready for that.”

Though don’t expect to see a bodybuilder when Catching Fire hits screens on Nov. 22, 2013. “I’m keeping it in the realm of the first one,” says Hutcherson.

For the first Hunger Games, Hutcherson put on 15 pounds of muscle to play Peeta, eating a diet of chicken, eggs and broccoli. He and co-star Liam Hemsworth also were “whipped” into shape by a Navy SEAL for weeks before shooting began.

“It was intense,” Hutcherson said at the time. “It was tire flipping and dragging random stuff around. It was never like, ‘let’s go bench press.’ “

For those not able to wait until 2013 for their next Hunger Games fix, the madness will begin all over again in a few weeks. The DVD release of the first film takes place midnight on Aug. 18. It includes Blu Ray/DVD bonus interviews including Hutcherson talking about his Hunger Games workouts.

Hutcherson knows he will have to service at least two big fans when the DVDs come out.

“My grandparents are going to want me to sign a bunch of copies (for friends),” he says. “I’m really excited for it.”

Josh has dyed his hair blonde again in preparation for Catching Fire