‘Hunger Games’ Soundtrack Lands Taylor Swift, Arcade Fire

Decemberists and Civil Wars also on the disc.

The soundtrack to “The Hunger Games” 
 will feature a bumper crop of new and unreleased songs by Taylor Swift, the Arcade Fire and the Decemberists.

The album will be produced by Grammy-winning producer T Bone Burnett and released before the movie hits theaters on March 23. Burnett and the group the Civil Wars got together to write an original tune for the CD with Swift, the first single, “Safe and Sound,” which was released to iTunes on December 23. The tune shot to #1 on the iTunes singles list within 24 hours of release.

Also serving up fresh tracks are the Arcade Fire, who collaborated with Burnett on “Horn of Plenty,” and the Decemberists, who’ve offered up the original song “One Engine.” The rest of the lineup has not been released, but according to a press release the soundtrack will feature all new songs based on themes that figure into the movie’s storyline.

Oscar-winning composer Danny Elfman recently exited the film, citing scheduling issues as he works to finish up the music for “Dark Shadows” and “Men in Black 3.” He was replaced by James Newton Howard, who is responsible for dozens of famous scores, including “Batman Begins.”

Inspired by the best-selling young-adult novel by Suzanne Collins, “The Hunger Games” follows the path of 16-year-old Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence), who is chosen to compete in a vicious televised tournament in which 24 teenagers from a post-apocalyptic society fight to the death for the entertainment of the masses. The film also stars Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth, as well as Woody Harrelson and rocker Lenny Kravitz.

Lawrence will not only star in the movie, but she will also lend her vocals 
 to the soundtrack. Producer Burnett had high praise for her singing, telling MTV it was “beautiful. She did great. She’s singing great. Killer actor too.”

Fans are totally geeked about the new big-screen adaptation that could be the next-generation “Twilight” series, which is why we put together our list of the top 10 “Games” moments of 2011.

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Often guilty, never convicted. Serving 15 years to life at MTV News.