CGI wasn't used for Philip Seymour Hoffman in Hunger Games

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Philip Seymour Hoffman

Philip Seymour Hoffman

Francis Lawrence thinks using CGI to increase the presence of the late actor Philip Seymour Hoffman in 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1' would have been a "catastrophic" decision.

Francis Lawrence thinks using CGI to increase the presence of Philip Seymour Hoffman in 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1' would have been "catastrophic."

The acclaimed actor passed away in February at the age of 46, midway through filming on the Hollywood blockbuster, but director Francis rejected plans to complete his missing scenes for the film and for the next instalment - 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2' - using computer trickery, saying the result would not have done justice to his acting ability.

He explained: "He was one of the greatest actors, I think, of all time, and I just think to try to fake a Philip Seymour Hoffman performance would have been catastrophic and I would never want to do that."

The father-of-three - who played Plutarch Heavensbee in the franchise - had two scenes left to be filmed when he died from a mixed drugs overdose.

Francis continued: "He had two scenes with dialogue that were left, and we decided we didn't want to try any kind of digital trickery with him. So we rewrote his scenes and gave his dialogue to other actors."

He added: "I just think this was the best way to be able to get around such a horrible thing."

The director - who also worked on 'I Am Legend' and 'Water for Elephants' - also spoke about the star's particular acting style, which included extensive research and rehearsal.

In a discussion with The Huffington Post, he explained: "He was constantly sort of grinding away at a scene and was able to dig down and down and down, deeper and really find the dynamics of the relationships that he's in,

"And then once you've done that process then you don't really need many takes at all with him."

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1

  • 4 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 125 min
  • 12A
  • Directed by: Francis Lawrence
  • Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Julianne Moore
  • UK release: 20 November 2014

Carving the final book in the Hunger Games series into two movies pays off, giving rhythm to a story that might otherwise have felt rushed. Action and politics are confidently balanced, Sutherland is deliciously vile as ever, Hutcherson is finally given something interesting to do and while Lawrence is rightly the star…

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