Fans of the Hunger Games series can finally stop watching the first four movies on repeat, 'cause there's a brand new addition coming to the world of Panem. A prequel, The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, is hitting theaters on November 17 and let me just say, omg, does it look cool. Not just because it gives us some much-awaited insight into the earlier stages of Panem (it's set during the 10th annual Hunger Games, AKA 10 years after the rebellion and 64 years before Katniss volunteers as tribute) but the cast looks extremely stacked. We've got movie industry veterans as well as a few new faces, playing characters both familiar to us and totally new. So, without further ado, come meet the cast of The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes.
Where you've seen him: You'll most likely recognize English actor Tom Blyth from the TV show Billy the Kid. He also made an appearance in The Gilded Age, and was in movies like Benediction and Scott and Sid.
His role in The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes: In the new Hunger Games movie, he plays one of the most hated characters from the original series: President Snow. Obviously, he plays a much younger Snow, one who's still a student at one of the Capitol's most prestigious schools. He gets chosen to be a mentor for District 12 tribute Lucy Gray Baird, and desperate to win the cash prize to help him pay for school, he needs to make sure she wins.
Where you've seen her: She's a pretty new face on the scene, but if you're a fan of musicals, you probably saw her play Maria in the 2021 West Side Story. She was also Anthea in Shazam! Fury of the Gods and is going to be in the upcoming live-action Snow White.
Her role in The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes: Rachel Zegler is playing the tribute from District 12, Lucy Gray Baird. Lucy's a member of the Covey, a nomadic musical group that was pushed into District 12 following the war. With Snow as her mentor, and a captivating voice, she manages to charm the people of the Capitol, and fans of the series know just how important that can be when it comes to surviving the games.
Where you've seen her: If you haven't seen Hunter in Euphoria already, then you're really missing out. It was her first and only other acting role we've seen to date (other than voicing a character in the animated movie Belle) but she's a total force on the screen.
Her role in The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes: Hunter plays another character that appears in the original movies: Tigris, the former stylist who helps Katniss and her rebel pals hide out in the Capitol. As it turns out, Tigris is Snow's cousin, and she's an up-and-coming fashion designer who's trying to support her family. Hunter's Tigris looks very different than the one we saw in the second Mockingjay movie, who, in case you forgot, had changed herself to look like a tiger.
Josh Andrés Rivera
Where you've seen him: Another West Side Story alum, Josh played Chino in the 2021 musical movie. He was also in the movie Cat Person and was in an episode of the TV show Sugar Baby.
His role in The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes: Josh Andrés Rivera plays Sejanus Plinth, Snow's classmate who's also chosen as a mentor for the games. He used to live in District 2 until his father was able to buy their way into the Capitol because he supplied the Capitol military with weapons during the war. As a mentor, Sejanus gets paired with one of his former District 2 classmates, Marcus, which is, um, awkward.
Where you've seen him: There are quite literally too many places to list them all, but some of the biggest would be Marie Antoinette, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Saving Mr. Banks, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, Bewitched, and Freaks and Geeks.
His role in The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes: Jason Schwartzman plays Lucretius "Lucky" Flickerman who, as you can probably guess, is a likely relative of Caesar Flickerman. Like Caesar, Lucky is also the host of the Hunger Games, in fact, he was the very first one! His look isn't quite as out there and colorful as Caesar's but it's on its way there.
Where you've seen him: I think the better question is where haven't you seen Peter Dinklage. Obviously he's famous for playing Tyrion Lannister in Game of Thrones, but he was also in Elf, The Chronicles of Narnia, Ice Age, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, and Avengers: Infinity War.
His role in The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes: Casca Highbottom may be the Dean of the prestigious Academy, but what he's really known for is being the creator of the Hunger Games—something he did unintentionally that he regrets. Ten years after the first games, which he served as the public face of, he now has an addiction to morphine and a mysterious beef with Snow's dad.
Where you've seen her: Viola Davis is an EGOT icon for a reason. She was Aibileen in The Help, Annalise Keating in How to Get Away With Murder, and Abby Black in Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close.
Her role in The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes: She plays Head Gamemaker Dr. Volumnia Gaul who is not only the mastermind behind the games, but she's personally responsible for creating some of the heinous animal mutations used as weapons against tributes in the games, like the torturous jabberjays. Shockingly, she has little concern for the lives of others, and is more concerned with boosting viewership for the games.
Where you've seen her: The Irish actress is a veteran of both the big and small screens. She played Eloise Hawking on Lost, and also appeared in James Joyce's Women, Yes Man, and The Others.
Her role in The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes: She plays Grandma'am, the grandmother of Snow and Tigris, whom she cares for greatly. She's very fond of roses and grows them in her rooftop garden, which seems to be where Snow developed his affinity later on.
Where you've seen her: Ashley is best known for her role in Fuller House as Lola Wong, but she's also appeared in episodes of NCIS and Scissor Seven, and the movie Always Be My Maybe.
Her role in The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes: Clemensia Dovecoat is another classmate of Snow's (considered to be the prettiest one in the class) who's also chosen to be a mentor for the games. and she's paired with a boy from District 11, Reaper Ash. But it's an incident in Dr. Gaul's lab, and not the games, that proves the most dangerous for Clemensia.
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