Well that was quick, Lionsgate has announced that Francis Lawrence (“Water for Elephants” “I Am Legend”) has been offered the role of directing duties for the “Hunger Games” sequel. It has only been a few weeks since “Hunger Games” director Gary Ross announced he will not be continuing on with the series, leaving Lionsgate in a rush to find a new director. After only about a week and a half of searching, director Francis Lawrence – who is best know for his work on “I Am Legend” starring Will Smith, and last springs hit “Water for Elephants” starring Robert Pattinson – was announced as having been offered to be the new director for “Catching Fire”.
The rush to find a new director is due to the need to have filming (at least where star Jennifer Lawrence is concerned) by December 20, 2012 due to Lawrence’s pre-Hunger Games option with FOX for the “X-Men: First Class” sequel. There is also the issue of the already announced release date of November 22, 2013.