‘Catching Fire’: Why Garrett Hedlund Passed On Finnick

'On the Road' actor confirms to MTV News at TIFF that he was up for 'Catching Fire' before Sam Claflin joined cast.

Finnick Odair, the dreamiest tribute in Panem, has finally been found, but only after a lengthy search that spanned countless A-list actors and virtual unknowns alike. “Snow White and the Huntsman” and “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides” actor Sam Claflin will star as the trident-wielding Finnick in Francis Lawrence’s “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire,” but once upon a time, there was a very different man in the running for the role: “Tron Legacy” star Garrett Hedlund .

Hedlund confirmed his near miss with “Catching Fire” during a recent interview with MTV News at the Toronto International Film Festival, where he was promoting “On The Road,” yet another hotly awaited novel adaptation.

“They did [approach me],” Hedlund admitted to MTV about almost playing Finnick in the upcoming “Hunger Games” sequel. “But I was working on this film at the time. We shot the whole film in 23 days and I was really immersed in it. I couldn’t get around [to reading the 'Hunger Games' novels].”

“Everybody around me is flipping out about the books, and I didn’t really have the time to sit down lately to read any book, not just ‘Hunger Games,’” he explained further. “But I’ve got a couple [projects] on my plate that I’m looking forward to reading now.”

Even though Hedlund missed out on Finnick, the man who did secure the part is well-positioned to impress fans of all twelve districts. “Hunger Games” star Jennifer Lawrence spoke with MTV News recently and had nothing but kind words for what Claflin brings to the table as Finnick.

“He’s wonderful,” she said of her newest co-star. “He’s really sweet, a great, wonderful actor. He’s got a great American accent.”

Check out everything we’ve got on “Catching Fire.”

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