SAN DIEGO — Moviemaking is a glamorous business. Just ask “Catching Fire” star Josh Hutcherson, who was on the receiving end of a Jennifer Lawrence snot bomb during one particularly slobbery day of filming their new “Hunger Games” sequel.
Hutcherson and Lawrence relayed the story to the enormous crowd gathered at San Diego Comic-Con on Saturday for the franchise’s first-ever panel in Hall H, the Con’s largest room. While the cast and crowd seemed pretty impressed with the debut of the latest “Catching Fire” trailer, Lawrence suggested an alternative to the officially sanctioned new footage.
“Oh my god, we should’ve brought that clip with the snot,” she exclaimed when asked a question about how hot the kissing scenes in the new movie will be.
Apparently things got super sexy while filming a pivotal mouth-to-mouth scene. “In the resuscitation there was a kiss and there was slobber, and the slobber sort of got connected to my face,” Hutcherson explained. “It will be very hot.”
Just because the snot scene (probably) won’t make the final cut doesn’t mean you won’t get a chance to see the disgusting glory for yourself. “I’ll put it on YouTube or something,” Lawrence said. “You gotta see it. There’s all this snot coming out of my nose, and when I go to kiss Josh, it connects with his mouth.”
Here are a few more (much less gross) things we learned from the panel, which also included costars Liam Hemsworth, Lenny Kravitz, Willow Shields, newbies Jena Malone and Jeffrey Wright, and director Frances Lawrence:
Sam Claflin, Sex God
Fan-favorite character Finnick Odair makes his debut in “Catching Fire,” but actor Sam Claflin was busy filming a new movie abroad and couldn’t make it to the panel. He did get a mention, though, when moderator Dave Karger brought up an interview in which Claflin worried audiences wouldn’t perceive him as enough of a sex god. “He is a sex god!” said Hutcherson, and director Francis Lawrence added, “Don’t worry, Sam!”
The way Wright, who makes his “Hunger Games” debut in “Catching Fire,” described the real-life relationship between Lawrence and Hutcherson, it almost seems like they’re siblings. “These two are the funniest pair and the biggest joy to work with,” he said. “They have a language all their own, although you can’t follow half of what they’re saying. But it’s all really funny and clever.” To wit, this exchange, when Hutcherson started talking about how Peeta was hurt that Katniss’ feelings for him in the first movie were all an act. “It was complicated,” Lawrence said with a sigh. “It was an act,” responded Hutcherson. Quipped Lawrence, “An act that saved his life!”
Whips and Chains
One of Hemsworth’s most challenging scenes involved a public whipping in front of the entirety of District 12. “It’s interesting to turn up to work and just get whipped for three days straight,” said Hutcherson. “You’re not really scared at first — it’s just acting and you think you’re not going to get hurt — but after three days of getting hit with anything it’s going to hurt.” He added with a smile, “It was good fun!”
Although Lawrence has trained in archery and parkour to help embody Katniss Everdeen, the occasionally clumsy actress still needs instruction in some basic areas. “The hardest stunt is probably still just basic running,” she joked of her “weird” running style. “If there’s a scene where I’m, like, running up a mountain, I’m, like, running up that mountain all day. [That] and trying not to hit myself in the face with my bow are my two [most difficult] stunts.”