By Adam Spunberg and Savanna New

The Hunger Games world is abuzz with casting rumors. For those of you who don’t know, The Hunger Games is a futuristic trilogy set in a dystopian version of America, where children are forced to fight to the death on national television. The first in this immensely successful book series, by Suzanne Collins, is now being set to a highly anticipated film, which is expected to rival Harry Potter and Twilight.

We are extremely fortunate to have Gabby Vittoria and Pauline Hughes from The Hob to break down the leading contenders in this heated casting debate. Today, we sniff through a bouquet of young actresses who, while small in stature, may be big-hearted enough to blossom as Primrose “Prim” Everdeen, Katniss’s generous, empathetic 12-year-old sister.

Note: The Hob is one of the top fan sites on the web, and we strongly encourage that you visit their site for more information.

Part I: Katniss
Part II: Haymitch
Part III: Peeta
Part IV: Gale
Part V: Effie
Part VI: President Snow
Part VII: Prim
Part VIII: Cinna
Part IX: Rue
Part X: Tributes
Part XI: The Others

Related: Interview with Tanvi Berwah of Hunger Games Network on the international impact

Elle Fanning

Gabby: She has the fair hair and skin tone, plus the angelic innocence I picture as Prim. They can make her appear shorter. If they cast someone older than Hailee [Steinfeld] as Katniss, she will work. Grade: B+

Pauline:
It’s really hard to decide on the other younger stars until they decide on Katniss. I love [Elle Fanning] as an actress, but [not] for this role. I guess it would depend who they cast as Katniss, but to me, Elle seems too old to be Prim. Perhaps she is the right age — I’m not sure how old she is — but she is tall and doesn’t seem like someone who would need her big sister to step in and participate in the games for her. Grade: D

Adam:
Before I endorse her — which I will — we must disinfect her of all remaining bacteria from the plague that was The Nutcracker in 3D. All right, good. Now that we’ve settled that, she absolutely looks like Prim. If I could paint (which I can’t), this might very well be my Primrose portrait, and if she lands this role, she’s in Dakota territory. Grade: A

Savanna: I think that Elle Fanning would be a stellar Prim alongside an older Katniss. She looks innocent and delicate, but if you watch her in interviews, you’ll see that she possesses a composure and wisdom far beyond her years that would suit Prim nicely (especially in the second and third films, when she becomes more of a major character with some heavy responsibilities). As Elle is only just beginning to emerge from her sister Dakota’s shadow, this could prove to be the big break she’s been waiting for.  Grade: A

Chloë Moretz

Gabby: Chloë has that dainty thing going for her. Grade: B

Pauline: I could maybe see Chloë as Prim, depending on the age of who plays Katniss. If they chose someone like Hailee [Steinfeld] as Katniss, I think they would need to go younger than Chloë for Prim. Grade: B+

Adam: Katniss won’t do, so now we’ve bumped her down to Prim. Next up: she’ll be auditioning for the role of Buttercup, the scraggly cat. Elle Fanning has more of the look, but Moretz could certainly pull it off. If she’s picked, Buttercup will be happy. Grade: B+

Savanna: I wouldn’t be disappointed to see Chloë Moretz as Prim. She’s a gifted actress, and I can really see her embodying this character and growing gracefully with the role in the second and third films. Like Elle Fanning, she looks a bit older than 12 (Prim’s age in the first book), so she would be best matched with a more mature-looking Katniss. Grade: A-

Izzy Meikle-Small

Gabby: Izzy has that young, innocent look about her. Grade: B

Pauline: I like the looks of her. She looks cute and angelic. Grade: B+

Adam: Izzy Meikle-Small would be perfect as early Prim, prancing in her duck-tailed shirt at the reaping. She seems so pure and innocent, which could be the problem later on, as she develops into more of a worldly character. For that first image alone, she might be worth it. Some great options we’ve got here! Grade: A-

Savanna: Though the role was quite minor, I enjoyed Izzy’s performance as a young Carey Mulligan in Never Let Me Go, and after watching her in a couple of interviews, feel quite taken by her. She seems to have an incredibly vibrant, sweet personality that would really make Prim stand out on screen. Grade: B+

Ruby Jerins

Gabby: Ruby Jerins is adorable, and she can act, but I don’t see Prim when I think of her. Prim is fairer — light hair, skin, etc. Grade: C

Pauline: I think Ruby is a good actress, but she isn’t who I picture when I see Prim. I guess she could pull it off if necessary. Grade: C+

Adam: At first glance, I thought, “No! Absolutely not,” but she leaves a Prim-like aftertaste. With the right makeup and proper mannerisms, I think she could evolve into a highly intriguing representation. This Ruby’s got some smoke. Grade: B+

Savanna: Like all of the young actresses on our list, Ruby is ridiculously cute and has Prim’s fair, angelic appearance. I haven’t seen any of her work, so I can’t assess her acting abilities, but in interviews, she comes across as precious and fragile as a flower. If little Ruby is cast, I know I won’t be the only one with tears dripping down my cheeks during the reaping scene. Grade: B

Brooklynn Proulx

Gabby: I think Brooklynn is my favorite. Grade: A-

Pauline: I think so far Brooklynn is the best looks-wise for me, too. Grade: A

Adam: Whoa…this IS Prim! I know I’m handing out grades like Harvard professors (cheap dig, I know), but how can she not be Prim? For some reason, I kept thinking of Brooklyn Decker — not a good Prim. Proulx wins my Prim prix. Grade: A+

Savanna: As far as appearance goes, I think Brooklynn Proulx most fits my personal vision of Prim. Her face truly is “fresh as a rosedrop, as lovely as the primrose.” Acting-wise, Brooklynn has some pretty impressive credits to her name — including Brokeback Mountain, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, and The Time Traveler’s Wife — and would surely bring a good deal of professionalism and poise to the table, despite her young age. Grade: A

Picktainment’s Pick

Savanna Kylie Lewis

Adam: As the lone representative not named Savanna reviewing Miss Lewis, I feel the need to present a more objective angle. One thing we can say for sure: this girl knows how to cry, and she weeps in the way a child genuinely would. It tugged at my sensibilities, to where I imagined what it might be like to have a younger sister and see her suffering. That is exactly what Collins conveyed. Grade: A

Savanna: Okay, so maybe I’m biased — can you figure out why? — but this girl acted her face off as Rue in the first Mainstay Pro short film, and I really think she should at least be given a chance to audition for Prim. The scene that she appeared in (with Danielle Chuchran, who we mentioned in our first installment on casting Katniss) was no walk in the park, and the fact that Savanna was able to make such an emotional moment believable — when it could have very well turned cheesy — proves that she has the talent to do Prim justice. Grade: A

 

Adam Spunberg is a senior writer at Picktainment and founder of the Austen Twitter Project. Email him at adam@picktainment.com or tweet @AdamSpunberg.

Savanna New is an associate editor at Picktainment. Email her at savanna@picktainment.com.