Melissa Leo Talks about Losing Mags in Catching Fire; Elizabeth Banks Thrilled to Work with Lynn Cohen

Melissa Leo’s name was tossed into the Mags casting craze last week. Rumor has it that Melissa Leo was offered to play the role of Mags but then few days after that Lionsgate has released an announcement that Lynn Cohen will play Mags in “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.” Now, Melissa Leo has talked to Moviefone about her involvement in the Mags casting rumor:

I would have liked to have done it, but it doesn’t look like it’ll be mine,” she said while chatting with Moviefone Monday afternoon, in support of her new film, “Why Stop Now.” Informed that Cohen had been confirmed as an addition to the cast, she responded, “Who? Oh, I’ll have to look her up.”

Leo said that being a part of the Hunger Games franchise was “a dear hope.” She hadn’t read the books, she told Moviefone, but the trailer for the first film excited her.

“I’m not much of a reader and that might very well be part of the reason that I did not get the role,” she said.

Melissa Leo

On the other hand, Elizabeth Banks was thrilled to learn that Lynn Cohens is the official Mags! In her blog post:

“Lynn Cohen is Mags!” Elizabeth Banks, who plays Capitol crony Effie Trinket in the popular series, crowed on her blog early Monday morning. Lionsgate confirmed Cohen’s casting late last week.

Cohen, whose previous credits include “Sex and the City” and “Munich,” among others, will play the aging former Hunger Games winner who becomes important to heroine Katniss Everdeen over the course of the series’ second installment.

Banks, for her part, was thrilled about the choice of Cohen to play Mags.

“She seems like a pretty rad lady and I’m excited to work with her,” Banks wrote. “I know she’ll mentor Finnick like nobody’s business.”

Catching Fire Casting Rumors: Sam Claflin, Catalina Sandino Moreno and Ciceley Tyson Added to the Craze

As of now there are still no official statements from Lionsgate about the actors and actresses who will join the Hunger Games family. It’s like we’ve been waiting for years and I really hope that Lionsgate will be able to give us some scoop before June ends. Even if just one actor for the cast, we will surely be happy with that. Anyway, Lainey Gossip has claimed that Sam Claflin, Catalina Sanino Moreno, and Cicley Tyson are added to the potential cast of “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.” Here is the statement:
“As reported yesterday, Philip Seymour Hoffman has been offered the role of Plutarch. Interesting choice. He was, way back, my pick to play Haymitch. I’m also told that while Garrett Hedlund’s audition went very well for Finnick, Sam Claflin also read for it. So again, they’re trying to look at as many options as possible. And with some imagination too. I hear exclusively that Catalina Sandino Moreno was asked to audition for Johanna Mason. But this is inspired, non? I am excited about her. Please note however that nothing has been decided. These details are just meant to give you an idea of how wide their searches have been although my sources tell me they are seriously considering Ciceley Tyson for Mags.”
Remember, this is just a rumor. 
My thoughts
Sam Claflin
In case  you don’t know, Sam Claflin has recently shared the big screen with Kristen Stewart as Prince William in “Snow White and the Huntsman.” I don’t think he fits the physical description of Finnick. He was even out-powered by Chris Hemsworth in the movie and to think of it he’s the prince. He has the looks but I think he’s not that tall and athletic.
Sam Claflin as Prince William in Snow White and the Huntsman

Sam Claflin
Catalina Sandino Moreno
I didn’t even know (until now) that Catalina Sandino Moreno was actually the evil vampire Maria in Twilight Saga: Eclipse. She was the vampire that brought up a newborn army by using Jasper. Looking at her Wikipedia page, she’s an Academy Award nominee like Jennifer Lawrence. So I think she might have the acting chops that can surely be comparable to Jennifer’s, which can be a great addition. 
Catalina as Maria in Twilight Saga: Eclipse

Catalina Sandino Moreno
 
Like Moreno, Cicely Tyson is also an OSCAR nominee so I think she’s a great addition to the casting.
Cicely Tyson