‘Hunger Games’ Experts Weigh In On ‘Catching Fire’ Director Francis Lawrence

'I've heard amazing things about him, so it's gonna be a fun ride,' film's co-star Josh Hutcherson says of series' new director.

“Hunger Games” fans are wiping away their goodbye-Gary-Ross tears and getting ready to welcome Francis Lawrence into the world of Panem. If he accepts Lionsgate’s offer, the “I Am Legend” director will take over the successful franchise’s sequel, “Catching Fire.” We spoke to a few “Hunger Games” fansite experts to gauge their thoughts on the director. They agree he was a good choice to helm the film and are putting their faith in Lionsgate’s decision.

Hunger Games Examiner Sara Gundell was “really excited” by the news of Lionsgate’s offer. She felt that he was the best option of all the rumored directors. “I had been really disappointed when Gary Ross left,” she said. “And knowing that Francis Lawrence was going to take over, it got me excited again about the franchise. I think he’s going to do really amazing things. And I think of all of the other directors that Lionsgate was considering, or that we know they were considering, he brought kind of everything to the table in my opinion.”

As a fan of the previous films he’s directed, Arianna Ruiz from Down With the Capitol believes Lawrence can give fans the “Catching Fire” they’re greatly anticipating. “I loved ‘I Am Legend.’ I loved ‘Water for Elephants,’ especially. So, when I found out that he was chosen to direct ‘Catching Fire,’ I’m like, he can totally bring a movie that the fans want to see,” she said.

Amanda Belcher from The Hob tells us she’s trusting Lionsgate’s decision. “I’m hoping that Lionsgate chose him because they really thought that he could do the ‘Catching Fire’ that fans really want to see and that we deserve,” she said. “I’m hoping that he can really come through and becomes a fan of the material, and take what screenplay is there and work with Suzanne [Collins] and [producer] Nina [Jacobson] and really pull this together for us.”

Meanwhile, “Hunger Games” co-star Josh Hutcherson told The Hollywood Reporter that he’s “excited” to meet Lawrence. “I’ve heard amazing things about him, so it’s gonna be a fun ride,” he said.

If Peeta Mellark is eager to see Lawrence’s vision for the film, count us in!

“Catching Fire” is slated to hit theaters on November 22, 2013.

Check out everything we’ve got on “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.”

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