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Hunger Games Moments That Outraged Fans

Just about everyone loves the Hunger Games movies—most of the time, anyway. The blockbuster grosses and critical acclaim heaped upon the franchise notwithstanding, there are definitely things about the films that have ticked fans off quite a bit. Here are a handful of Hunger Games moments that ended in outrage.

When a movie advertisement cursed at fans

In August 2015, when Mockingjay Part 2 had 100 days before it hit theaters, Lionsgate released an image on Twitter highlighting that fact. It sounds like a great idea for a promotion—unfortunately, the unfortunate arrangement of the words on the poster formed what looked a lot like a major expletive. Upon realizing the error, the studio hastily removed the image. If this is the type of thing Lionsgate releases when they're excited, just imagine what they might do out of anger.

Rue, Thresh, and Cinna's casting

This one's kind of crazy, so hold on. Not long after Hunger Games hit theaters, some 'fans' were upset that an African-American actress was playing Rue, not to mention the thespians cast as Thresh and Cinna. This is despite the fact that the characters are described as African-American in the novels, and the fact that author Suzanne Collins has said in no uncertain terms that the characters are African-American. The racially motivated outcry in turn inspired anger toward the people complaining in the first place—which is really the only understandable anger in this particular incident.

Jennifer Lawrence's casting

Jennifer Lawrence wasn't always America's sweetheart. In fact, before she won everyone over as Katniss Everdeen, her casting caused quite the controversy. In the novels, Katniss is given a purposely ethnically-ambiguous description: dark hair, grey eyes, olive skin. This doesn't just leave a lot open to the imagination, it provides children of multiple ethnicities with a strong, easily relatable character—and it's a pretty far cry from the blonde-haired, blue-eyed Lawrence. While Lawrence wound up delivering a career-defining performance, some fans still found her appearance a bit alienating.

And her body

For some reason, people have always been a tad too fixated on Jennifer Lawrence's body, and the Hunger Games movies are a perfect example. As the movie is set in a dystopian future, it's somewhat understandable that people might think J.Law has too much meat on her bones—after all, she was playing a character in a time and place where food is hard to come by, conditions that tend to leave people looking emaciated. Still, saying her figure is too ample is better than one review that essentially found her appearance too "seductive" to play Katniss. Now that's just creepy.

Splitting Mockingjay in two

A number of novel-based film franchise have drawn fan ire by splitting one book into two movies, so producers of the Hunger Games should have known better when they chose to turn Mockingjay into a two-parter. Lionsgate execs had to have been well aware that the move would be seen as a cash grab, but they went ahead and did it anyway, secure in the knowledge that, at that point, the fans were already hooked and unlikely to walk away. And they were right, too—together, the two Mockingjay movies pulled in roughly $620 million.

Wimpy Peeta

There's nothing worse than a milquetoast male lead, especially when there's romance involved. Enter Peeta, who some fans felt had a totally "beta" personality and was nowhere near Katniss' equal. Though he's a nice guy, according to this point of view, he spends too much of the story needing to be rescued. And when he's not in danger, he's pretending to be a cold, lifeless rock, which actually works as a pretty good metaphor for his character—in the films, anyway.

Gary Ross leaving the franchise

You're a great director who has adapted a beloved novel and turned it into a blockbuster movie. How do you follow that up? If you're Gary Ross, you walk away from the powerhouse franchise you helped establish. Of course, Ross had a good reason for abandoning Hunger Games: The studio wasn't going to give him anywhere near the time he needed to make a sequel worthy of the original. Still, it was hard for some fans to let go of the idea that if he'd just tried, Ross might have somehow found a way to pull it off.

The violence in the films

Despite the fact that the Hunger Games novels are set in a dystopian future where children are pitted against one another in life-and-death combat, people were still surprised by the violence. And Catching Fire really shocked folks over in jolly old England, where some critics felt the film glorified violence and exposed you filmgoers to "unnecessarily graphic" images. The villain of the film was really the only character seen glorifying the bloodshed, but the outcry worked—the offending footage was cut from the film. It's kind of hypocritical, isn't it? After all, this is the country that unleashed Simon Cowell on the world.

When it inspired Thai teens to fight the power

In a classic case of life imitating art, Thai teenagers adopted the three-finger salute popularized by Katniss Everdeen in 2014. The teenagers in question displayed this digital dissent while protesting a speech given by Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha during a visit to the city of Khon Kaen. As a result, the government canceled the release of Mockingjay Part 1, and audiences had to settle for Woody Allen's Magic in the Moonlight instead. Talk about ruining it for everyone.

The prequel rumors

What's worse than adapting one novel into two movies? Making more movies based on books that don't even exist, which is what Lionsgate has thought about doing with Hunger Games. Not wanting their cash cow to die, they've begun thinking about making prequels to the acclaimed series, because as Star Wars has taught us, prequels are never a bad idea. Naturally, fans have seen these plans for what they really are: a way to make more money. And not only are prequels in the works, but there's been talk about movies beyond Mockingjay as well. Looks like Lionsgate is going to bleed this franchise until it dies.