Rachel Zegler set for Hunger Games prequel The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

Rachel Zegler, Hunger Games, prequel, The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

Rachel Zegler is continuing her streak of landing high-profile roles following her breakout debut in Steven Spielberg’s adaptation of West Side Story. It has been announced that the actress is set to play Lucy Gray Baird in the Hunger Games prequel The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes.

The actress sparked speculation about her involvement following a tweet she sent out on Monday night. The tweet read, “listen up….. can y’all grow restfully? are you becoming an individual resting decisively?” Fans of Suzanne Collins’ book pointed out, the first letter of each word in her tweet spells out the main character’s name, Lucy Gray Baird.

Per the press release from Lionsgate, “Years before he would become the tyrannical President of Panem, 18-year-old Coriolanus Snow is the last hope for his fading lineage, a once-proud family that has fallen from grace in a post-war Capitol. With the 10th annual Hunger Games fast approaching, the young Snow is alarmed when he is assigned to mentor Lucy Gray Baird, the girl tribute from impoverished District 12. But, after Lucy Gray commands all of Panem’s attention by defiantly singing during the reaping ceremony, Snow thinks he might be able to turn the odds in their favor. Uniting their instincts for showmanship and newfound political savvy, Snow and Lucy’s race against time to survive will ultimately reveal who is a songbird, and who is a snake.” Nathan Kahane, president, Lionsgate Motion Picture Group, had this to say about casting Zegler:

“Lucy Gray is an incredibly complex character, a performer who has to use every skill in her arsenal to survive. Our casting team, Deb Zane and Dylan Jury, spearheaded an exhaustive search, reading hundreds of actors in search of our perfect Lucy Gray. That search ended when Rachel Zegler blew the roof off with her depth and breadth of talent as an actor, singer, and performer. Rachel is utterly compelling; just like Lucy Gray, her voice and charisma command the stage while her inner strength and humanity transform those around her.”

The prequel will be directed by Francis Lawrence, who previously directed the franchise’s Catching FireMockingjay Part One, and Mockingjay Part Two while the latest draft of the screenplay is by Michael Lesslie. The film is set to hit screens on November 17, 2023.

This is the latest in a string of big roles for Rachel Zegler after playing Maria in the West Side Story remake. She is next set to appear in DC Comics’ Shazam! Fury of the Gods alongside Zachary Levi, Helen Mirren, and Lucy Liu, which debuts in December 202 and she is currently filming the title role in Disney’s live-action Snow White, directed by Marc Webb.

What are YOUR thoughts on this latest casting news?

Source: Twitter

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