Want our official review of The Hunger Games? Well, here it is: Liam Hemsworth is gorgeous.
Ok, there was some other goodness with the Girl on Fire and a bloody death match and whatnot, but the most important thing is this: Liam Hemsworth is gor-ge-ous. So it's a shame that—as you literature-lovin' tributes already know—his alter ego Gale is only lightly featured in this first flick.
But that wasn't always the case:
"We did try out some things, just to sort of see what would it mean to have more Gale in the first movie," H.G. producer Nina Jacobson confirmed to us about rumors that at one point there existed a script that altered from the book. "Because we're establishing such an important character and he has so little screen time."
Of course, she's talking Liam, whose big-screen alter ego [SPOILER ALERT!] goes on to become a rebel in the Capitol uprising. But for now—at least according to the book—Gale takes a backseat while Peeta and Katniss head to the games.
"When Billy Ray came on to the screenplay—with Suzanne [Collins]—we tried out some ideas to see whether there were places to digress," Nina continued, discussing a second draft of the screenplay (the eventual script was a tag team between Suzanne and director Gary Ross). "So what would it mean to have more Gale and how would you do it?"
According to whispers about what exactly that script par-tick contained, Gale would have snuck aboard the Capitol-bound train with Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) and disguised himself as an Avox (a tongueless slave) to stay close to her.
And guess what—Suzanne Collins was totally on board with this—fairly radical, most loyal Mockingjays would argue—reinterpretation of the novel.
"She was very much a part of the conversation. She's very receptive. She's very smart. She was very open to the idea of having more Gale," Ms. Jacobson explained. "I think she was more open to it than I was, actually. We would have arguments about it. I wanted to go back to the more faithful version; she was more receptive to these changes."
And as misty-eyed as we are to see less of Liam's hunky mug, we're happy to tell you that the film does stay very loyal to the book.
"It just didn't feel honest to me," Nina says of why this alternate Games reality was scrapped. "We ultimately felt that it was better to stick with the original structure of the book."
Guess we'll just have to wait until the second and third installment to score more Hemsworth face time, huh? As if we weren't already excited about future Hunger Games flicks as it were!