‘Catching Fire,’ Francis Lawrence And A Blazing Music Video History

Okay y’all: enough reeling and sobbing over the loss of Gary Ross as director of “The Hunger Games franchise. It’s over, wallowing in a breakup is no way to live, and we all need to move on…especially since Lionsgate just answered our most burning-est question about the next film, when they presented Francis Lawrence with the official offer to direct “Catching Fire”!

Nothing is set in stone yet, but Lawrence is, dare we say, a very good pick on the part of the studio to take on the challenge of bringing the Quarter Quell and nascent District revolution to life on screen. And while the director has some feature film experience that should come in useful for the job (including a good handle on the whole dystopian hero thing after directing Will Smith in “I Am Legend”), it’s his music video work that really makes us giddy at the prospect of seeing him helm the next installment of “The Hunger Games.” The director has a rich history of making visually stunning videos that depict revolution, revenge and settings that bear a striking resemblance to certain parts of Suzanne Collins’ Panem. And after examining even a small sampling of his oeuvre—the videos for Britney Spears’ “Slave 4 U,” Beyoncé’s “Run the World (Girls)” and Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance”—we’ve noticed three choice elements of Lawrence’s directorial style that we’d love to see transferred to the big screen.

Post-apocalyptic and futuristic visuals
From the dusty abandoned landscape in “Girls” to the filthy, crumbling city that stretches beyond Britney’s balcony in “Slave 4 U,” Lawrence has a knack for showing us what the world might look like if everything and everyone in it caught fire and burned to the ground—not to mention that the clinical-looking Spa of Pods from “Bad Romance” would be right at home in the Capitol. Plus, knowing the director’s talent for stunning visual settings, we’d be extra excited to see him tackle the complicated clockwork arena from the 75th Hunger Games.

Fresh fashion
The most bizarre looks from these videos—everything from the white latex bodysuits of “Bad Romance” to Britney’s choice of pink lacy underwear worn over her pleather pants—would be right at home in the Capitol. And Gaga’s green bejeweled bodysuit with the McQueen hoof heels and bubble skirt? Needs to be on Effie Trinket in the next movie. Please and thank you.

Lady vengeance
The plot of “Catching Fire” is a complicated web of revolution, romance, action and self-sacrifice, and Lawrence’s past work leaves no question that he’s qualified to make it look great on screen: I mean, “Run the World (Girls)” features a hard-hearted heroine leading a ragtag group of misfits in militaristic uprising, and “Bad Romance” actually has at its climax a girl who is, literally, on fire. And while we’re not saying that Katniss should, at some point, be shown lying in fabulous repose next to the charred corpse of her enemies…well, no, okay, that’s exactly what we’re saying. Make it happen!

What do you think of the choice of Francis Lawrence for “Catching Fire”? Sound off in the comments and on Twitter!