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Jennifer Lawrence says she was asked 'How much weight are you going to lose?' for 'Hunger Games'

TODAY 12/7/2022 Randee Dawn

It's almost hard to recall a time when Jennifer Lawrence, who has won an Oscar and is one of the highest-paid female actors in Hollywood, was still an up-and-coming name without a lot of power behind the camera.

But as the "Causeway" star revealed in a new chat for Variety with "The Woman King" star Viola Davis, things were very different when she was shooting “The Hunger Games” films.

Jennifer Lawrence in © Alamy Stock Photo Jennifer Lawrence in

She revealed that behind the scenes ahead of 2012's "The Hunger Games," she was questioned about losing weight for the role.

"I remember the biggest conversation was 'How much weight are you going to lose?'" she recalled. "Along with me being young and growing and not able to be on a diet, I don’t know if I want all of the girls who are going to dress up as Katniss to feel like they can’t because they’re not a certain weight. And I can’t let that seep into my brain."

Now 32, Lawrence was in her early 20s at the time and very aware of the "awesome responsibility" of playing a book character beloved by children.

Davis then wondered how much of the business affected her love of acting, and Lawrence replied, "I’ve been doing this since I was so young. When 'Hunger Games' was out, I couldn’t really be an observer of life because everybody was observing me. I could feel my craft suffering. And I didn’t know how to fix it. I was scrambling, trying to fix it by saying yes to this movie and then trying to counteract it with that movie. And not realizing that what I had to do was no movies until something spoke to me."

Such concerns linger into the modern day; Lawrence said when reading the script for "Causeway" she "had no confidence" in herself.

"I had no confidence in my antenna. I had lost so much of what I used to feel was instinctual. And the problem with instincts is it’s not a method you can fall back on."

Jennifer Lawrence in © AppleTV+ Jennifer Lawrence in

Hopefully, the "Hunger Games" prequel that's set for 2023, "The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes," starring Rachel Zegler, will have fewer of those issues that plagued Lawrence. In any case, she said she has a lot of feelings about seeing it come together from afar.

"'The Hunger Games,' I am so excited about the prequel," she said. "Nothing has ever made me feel so old, by the way."


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