'Catching Fire' Casts Philip Seymour Hoffman As Head Gamemaker

Actor will play Plutarch Heavensbee in 'Hunger Games' sequel, set for a November 2013 release.

The Quarter Quell is taking shape. Weeks after rumors began swirling that Philip Seymour Hoffman had been offered the role of Plutarch Heavensbee in series sequel "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire," Lionsgate confirmed on Monday (July 9) that the actor will indeed step into the pivotal part.

Readers of Suzanne Collins' best-selling series know Plutarch Heavensbee as Head Gamemaker of the 75th annual Hunger Games — a role left vacant by the demise of previous Gamemaker Seneca Crane (played by Wes Bentley). But Heavensbee's hiding a secret agenda of his own that will only become apparent to the Capitol once it's too late to stop.

Heavensbee is the first of several roles to be filled in "Catching Fire," with speculation running rampant as who will portray beloved characters like tributes Finnick Odair and Johanna Mason. Heavensbee also appears in the trilogy's final installment, "Mockingjay."

For his part, Hoffman is coming off a Tony-nominated turn in the Broadway revival "Death of a Salesman" alongside "The Amazing Spider-Man" star Andrew Garfield. He was most recently seen onscreen in two Academy Award-nominated films: "Moneyball," co-starring Brad Pitt, and "The Ides of March," co-starring George Clooney and Ryan Gosling. Hoffman has a pair of films slated for a 2012 release: "A Late Quartet" and "The Master."

"Catching Fire" will begin production later this year with stars Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson and Liam Hemsworth, as well as new director Francis Lawrence. The film will hit theaters November 22, 2013.

What do you think of Philip Seymour Hoffman as Plutarch Heavensbee?