Francis Lawrence talks Eminem & Coryo comparisons in the new Hunger Games movie

The latest instalment in The Hunger Games movie franchise is arriving on November 17, 2023.

The Ballad Of Songbirds & Snakes sees Tom Blyth and Rachel Zegler step into the lead roles of a young Coriolanus Snow and his mentee, District 12 tribute Lucy Gray Baird.

The latest release of The Hunger Games – which also stars Viola Davis, Josh Andrés Rivera, Jason Schwartzman, Peter Dinklage and Hunter Schafer – is set 64 years before the events of the first movie, and serves as a prequel to the hugely popular original trilogy, released from 2012-2015.

When the movie was released the trailer, fans could not help not to compare Eminem’s Slim Shady look to Tom Blyth’s Coriolanus “Coryo” Snow.

Huffpost has recently caught up with producer Nina Jacobson and director Francis Lawrence to find out more about The Ballad Of Songbirds & Snakes, and what exactly went into the making of the movie. At one point of the interview, they also talked about the unexpected comparison of Eminem and Coryo.


And how hard was it to frame Coryo as the “hero” of the story given that he’s not really a good person?

FL: I think that was the biggest challenge. One of the things I was really excited about was being able to tell a very different kind of story than the first films; a young man’s descent into darkness. But the issue was taking a character that everybody knows is a villain, and everybody sort of loves to hate, and having the audience root for him and empathize with him. What I would say was the next tricky bit was to make sure that while we’re getting people to root for him, we’re seeding in greed, ambition, and the possible darkness that could be in him.

Erm, so, we couldn’t help but see Eminem in Coryo’s look during the period when he’s becoming a Peacekeeper. Is that something you noticed, too?

FL: No. You know what, I never saw the Eminem thing. Obviously, both Josh and Tom had to shave their heads to get into Peacekeeper mode. When I saw Tom for the first time with his bleached hair and his shaved head, I thought he looked kind of like punk rock, and I loved that kind of edge to it. It wasn’t until the first image was released of him and Rachel lying by the lake that people started saying, “why does he look like Eminem?” Then I went, “oh, I guess he sort of does look like Eminem a bit”. But that was not the intention!

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