In The Hunger Games, 24 kids are randomly selected from 12 different Districts to battle to the death, on TV, for the whole country to see. The government hosts this bloodbath annually so they can flaunt the power they have over the people. “Hey, look at us. We can legally take your kids from you and kill them on TV for the sake of entertainment.” Leading that evil government, at least in the time of our hero Katniss Everdeen, is President Snow. Snow has now finally been cast in Gary Ross‘ upcoming film adaptation and he’ll be played the acting legend Donald Sutherland.

Lionsgate broke the news of the casting on their LionsgateNews Twitter feed and, once again, they’ve done a magnificent job.

Both imposing but lovable, a master of the dramatic and comedic, Sutherland is exactly what one expects in the character of President Snow. He must be ruthless and evil, of course, but he’s also the President, someone the whole country watches and is captivated by. Over the course of Sutherland’s career, be it when he started in The Dirty Dozen, to his star making turning roles in M*A*S*H or Animal House, up through more recent works like Outbreak and The Italian Job, Sutherland has always been a commanding presence with a distinct grey area. Rarely is he obviously good or obviously bad, he’s always floating along in the middle. And that’s President Snow in a nutshell.

By signing on to be in Ross’ 2012 film, Sutherland has more than likely signed his fate for the next few years as well. Snow has a relatively small part in the first film, but an increasingly large part in Catching Fire and Mocking Jay, the two sequels to The Hunger Games, assuming those get made.

Ross might have lost us on a lot of his minor casting but the major roles, especially the adult ones, have been spot on. Do you agree?

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