For someone who wasn’t 20 yet, Josh Hutcherson had a heckuva career going even before being cast as Peeta Mallark in the much-hyped The Hunger Games series. He’d gone to space in Jon Favreau’s Zathura (2005), crisscrossed the country with Robin Williams in RV (2006), Journeyed to the Center of Earth with Brendan Fraser and co-starred in the four-time Oscar-nominated drama The Kids Are All Right with Annette Bening and Julianne Moore.
The Hunger Games propelled Hutcherson to new heights, though, as the young actor drew the fawning adulation of a rabid base over the course of four years and four movies between 2012 and 2015. It also placed him in exciting company with a celebrated ensemble lead by his fellow Kentucky native Jennifer Lawrence, who headlined the YA series while she simultaneously began racking up multiple Oscar nominations.
In a new interview with Yahoo Entertainment as all four installments of The Hunger Games premiered on the streaming service Tubi, Hutcherson, now 27, recalls the first time he met Lawrence — pre-Panem as both attended the SAG Awards for their films The Kids Are All Right and Winter’s Bone, respectively, in early 2011.
“She came over to me and she told me this story about how when she was about 10 years old, she had seen in a local newspaper in Kentucky that this young actor had gone out to California… to become an actor, and that was me,” Hutcherson says (watch above). “And she showed that to her parents and was like, ‘Look, I want to do this, too. This kid [is] doing it.’ So it’s crazy that we ended up doing these movies together.”
Hutcherson and Lawrence became very close over the course of filming the series, even if it was an occasionally painful relationship for the former. Only weeks into the shooting of 2012’s The Hunger Games, Lawrence accidentally kicked Hutcherson in the head while trying to show off her legwork, knocking him out with a mild concussion.
“She was being a real show-off, thinking that she was Jackie Chan or something,” Hutcherson cracks. “[She was] throwing these air kicks and was like, ‘Josh, I can kick over your head!’ And then crack! She clipped me in the temple… I don’t really remember, because I got knocked out.”
When Hutcherson came to again, “She was crying. She felt terrible. I woke up with her [crying], laying over me.”
Hutcherson, who has since gone on to star in Hulu’s Future Man and appeared in films like Tragedy Girls and The Disaster Artist, has called working in The Hunger Games a “double-edged sword.”
“The biggest positives were, number one, the experience. The experience of getting to work with such incredible actors for such a long period of time and seeing how they work, from Jen to [Philip Seymour Hoffman] to [Woody Harrelson] to Donald Sutherland, the list is pretty mind-blowing, Mahershala Ali, who went on to stratospheric levels later.”
The other end of that sword cuts into Hutcherson’s concerns that he’d be boxed in to a certain type of role of playing the gentle and sweet-natured “bread boy” Peeta Mallark for so long.
“You can become boxed in as an actor, professionally. And that’s tough, and people can only see you as that character and it’s hard for them to imagine you in something else. And that’s difficult, and that takes time and years of overcoming it.”
Hutcherson points to the career of Robert Pattinson, the Twilight heartthrob who’s drawn recent critical acclaim for indie films like Good Time and The Lighthouse and is now making more big tentpoles like Tenet and The Batman as “a great example of someone who was attached in some way to a huge, huge project and known as one character and now he’s killing it, doing incredible work as an actor and you don’t see him as that anymore.”
The impressive breadth of Hutcherson’s still-young career says he won’t be boxed in, either.
All four Hunger Games films are currently streaming on Tubi.
— Video produced by Jen Kucsak
Read more on Yahoo Entertainment:
Watch Joe Biden welcome Ruth Bader Ginsburg to the Supreme Court in 1993
Both presidential candidates paid tribute to the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died Friday night from metastatic pancreatic cancer complications.
President Trump, who found out about Ginsburg’s passing in real time after finishing a rally speech in Minnesota, called her “an amazing woman who led an amazing life,” and later, in a formal statement, referred to the justice as a “titan of the law” who was “renowned for her brilliant mind and her powerful dissents at the Supreme Court.”
Trump’s Democratic challenger, former Vice President Joe Biden, echoed those sentiments, describing Ginsburg as “an American hero, a giant of legal doctrine, and a relentless voice in the pursuit of that highest American ideal: Equal Justice Under Law.” Biden’s respect for Ginsburg has been on record for some time. Back in 1993, during her Senate confirmation hearing, then-Sen. Biden (D-Del.) said Ginsburg “came before the committee with her place already secured in history” for arguing “a series of landmark cases that changed the way our laws could distinguish legally between women and men, and you significantly narrowed the circumstances under which they could.”
.@JoeBiden presiding Ginsburg #SCOTUS hearing 7/20/1993:
“come before committee with place already secured in history…Now as you face new opportunity to shape future of America we welcome you, invite you to share us and American people your vision of shape of future of America” pic.twitter.com/CE3kcaaQWp
— Howard Mortman (@HowardMortman) September 19, 2020
In addition to praising Ginsburg on Friday, Biden addressed the unavoidable question of the possibility a Republican-led Senate would try to confirm a Trump-selected replacement on the Supreme Court. The Democratic nominee made it clear the decision should not come until at least after the election. “The voters should pick a president, and the president should select a successor to Justice Ginsburg,” he said.
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Oppenheimer downgrades Home Depot, Lowe’s on a ‘post-pandemic reset’ in home improvement retail [Video]
On Friday, Oppenheimer downgraded both Home Depot and Lowe’s to perform from outperform and lowered their price targets marginally. The firm disclosed that it still finds both companies favorable in the intermediate to longer-term stance, as shifts in consumer demands in the real estate and home improvement space are going to continue to fluctuate. Yahoo Finance’s Final Round panel break down the firm’s call and discuss the details.
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