With The Hunger Games scheduled for release less than a year from now, it’s no surprise that the cast of Gary Ross‘s film is quickly filling up. Earlier today, we reported that Dayo Okeniyi and Amanda Stenberg were cast as two of the important tributes who participate in the Hunger Games, Thresh and Rue. And while Ross went with unknowns for those roles, it doesn’t seem to be his plan for the adult roles. Variety is exclusively reporting that Elizabeth Banks is in talks to play Effie Trinket, Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta’s (Josh Hutcherson) escort from their home in district 12 to the games in the Capital. Read more about the character and the film after the jump.

Variety broke the news of Banks’ casting and, if we’re to go by the description of the character from the book as a young, flighty but stern woman, they couldn’t have found anyone better. Here’s her description from the Hunger Games Wiki:

Effie can be a bit of a airhead at times, totally oblivious to the sorrows and misfortunes that fall upon District 12…. She’s very strict about manners and being “proper”, as that is the Capitol’s way. She is a classic Capitol resident with impeccable manners, getting overly distressed at seeing her wig being tilted … on television, during the recaps. She is also a perfectionist and extremely punctual, complaining about how a five minute train delay would affect her tightly packed schedule.

In the books, once Katniss and Peeta are chosen out of all the children in District 12 to be the tributes, Effie is their liaison. She’s with them every step of the way, making sure they’re where they need to be, on time, dressed correctly, etc. Much of the first book is the description of this world in the lead up to the Games themselves, so the Effie character serves a very important purpose as a provider of information and to show the differences between the people who live in District 12 and the Capitol.

As I stated earlier, the biggest casting yet to be announced is that of Haymitch, the drunken former winner of The Hunger Games who becomes the mentor to Katniss and Peeta. He plays a huge role in all three books and, for this first one, spends a lot of time with Effie, so a chemistry with Elizabeth Banks is a must…Paul Rudd maybe?

What do you think of Elizabeth Banks being cast in The Hunger Games?

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