Hunger Games prequel movie gets 2023 release date

The Hunger Games prequel movie, The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, now has an official release date. The prequel is currently set to hit the big screen on November 17, 2023.

The announcement was made at CinemaCon, along with a teaser trailer. “You’re invited to return to the Games,” read the screen (via The Hollywood Reporter (opens in new tab)). “In 2023, the world will discover who is a songbird and who is a snake.”

Francis Lawrence, who helmed the last three movies in the original quartet (Catching Fire, Mockingjay – Part 1, and Mockingjay – Part 2), will direct the prequel, but there’s no news on casting yet. Hunger Games author Suzanne Collins is on board as one of the film’s screenwriters. 

The first Hunger Games movie was released in 2012. Set in a dystopian future version of the US called Panem, each year one boy and one girl from each of the nation’s districts must take part in the annual Hunger Games as punishment for past uprisings against the Capitol. The Games are a televised competition in which the adolescent “tributes” must fight to the death. Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, and Elizabeth Banks starred in the franchise.

The prequel movie will be based on Collins’ novel The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, which was published in 2020. Set over 60 years before the first Hunger Games novel, it follows an 18-year-old from the Capitol who is tasked with mentoring one of the Games’ tributes, but as their fates become entwined, things start to get complicated. 

While we wait for The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes to arrive in theaters, check out our list of the other upcoming movies on the way in 2022 and beyond.

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