You can’t please everyone when adapting a book for the big screen, especially one as beloved as “The Hunger Games,” but director Gary Ross and the casting team likely weren’t anticipating this.
According to Jezebel, there appears to be a group of fans who are displeased that black actors were cast to portray Cinna (Lenny Kravitz), Rue (Amandla Stenberg) and Thresh (Dayo Okeniyi). While Cinna’s complexion isn’t described in the novel, author Suzanne Collins does describe the latter two characters as both having dark skin.
As chronicled on the Tumblr “Hunger Games Tweets,” it seems some readers either didn’t pick up on the description or didn’t read the description as depicting two African-American characters, and as a result have been vocal about their disappointment.
“Why does Rue have to be black not gonna lie kinda ruined the movie,” wrote one fan in a tweet posted on the “Hunger Games Tweets” Tumblr.
Another described the “Awkward moment when Rue is some black girl and not the little innocent blonde girl you picture,” while another said: “I was pumped about the Hunger Games. Until I learned a black girl was playing Rue.”
On Okeniyi’s casting, another Twitter user weighed in: “Naturally Thresh would be a black man. #NotImpressed.”
In a post, the Tumblr notes that the reactions began cropping up last summer, but since the film’s March 23 release, the writer says that “the amount of people who seem to all share these views just increased exponentially.”
As a result, the blog aims to unveil “‘Hunger Games’ fans on Twitter who dare to call themselves fans yet don’t know a damn thing about the books.”
The writer adds in a separate entry that all of the tweets collected are from people who’ve read Collins’ trilogy.
“Clearly, they all fell in love with and cared about Rue. Though what they really fell in love with was an image of Rue that they’d created in their minds…And then the casting is revealed (or they go see the movie) and they’re shocked to see that Rue is black…This is so much more than, ‘Oh, she’s bigger than I thought.’ The reactions are all based on feelings of disgust.”
The point of collecting these reactions, the Tumblr’s author writes, is to draw attention to what the writer sees as “MAJOR TIE-INS to these reactions and the injustices that we see around the world today.”
That…”and to also point out s****y reading comprehension. LOL.”