‘Hunger Games’ Actress Sees Katniss In Jennifer Lawrence

'Jen has some of Katniss' qualities in her,' Amandla Stenberg told MTV News of the 'Hunger Games' leading lady.
By Josh Wigler, with reporting by Josh Horowitz

Jennifer Lawrence attends the world premiere of "The Hunger Games"
Photo: Getty Images

Jennifer Lawrence is Katniss Everdeen, though not every fan agreed prior to the actress' casting almost a full year ago. Was her hair dark enough? Was she young enough? These were the nitpicky details that some readers of "The Hunger Games" latched onto, but based on increasing buzz about the film's fantastic quality, those worries should be out the door by now — and if they're not, Amandla Stenberg is here to convince you of Lawrence's worthiness.

"I think they're kind of similar," Stenberg, who plays fan-favorite tribute Rue in the film, told MTV News on the "Hunger Games" red carpet in Los Angeles on Monday. "Jen has some of Katniss' qualities in her. She can be kind of sarcastic, and I think Jen has that same sense of humor."

Stenberg certainly had plenty of chances to see for herself just how much Lawrence and Everdeen have in common. As Rue, the young actress spent most of her screen time opposite the Oscar-nominated "Winter's Bone" actress, playing her first ally in the deadly competition. Indeed, Rue is at the center of what may very well be the most anticipated scene in the film for "Hunger Games" readers.

"I want fans to be happy with it," Stenberg said of her all-too-crucial spoiler-heavy scene. "But being on set though, even when we were shooting such a serious scene, everyone was lighthearted and having fun. We tried to keep it a little happy on set."

For Stenberg, it wasn't hard to stay happy, considering that she had read "The Hunger Games" a whopping four times before even landing the part of Rue. As a fan of the books, Stenberg admitted that she was pretty nervous going into the audition process, even though she clearly nailed the tryout in the end.

"I went to [director Gary Ross'] house covered in mud with leaves and twigs in my hair and everything, so I looked like Rue," she recalled. "I think I made a good impression, because it went really well. I was very nervous though because I didn't hear back for a couple weeks, but then I got a call from my agent saying I got the part. I started screaming and running around!"

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