On March 17, 2009, with only the first book in the series out and the sequel due out in September of that year, it was announced that Lionsgate had acquired the worldwide distribution rights to The Hunger Games, which already had a production company, Color Force. At the moment, the press release appointed author Suzanne Collins as the screenwriter for the adaptation and quoted Lionsgate’s President of Motion Picture Production, Alli Shearmur, “This is exactly the kind of movie I came to Lionsgate to make: youthful, exciting, smart and edgy.”
Exactly two years later the studio announced they had found their Katniss: Jennifer Lawrence would play the Hunger Games protagonist. Three weeks later an announcement for Peeta and Gale came and several more cast revelations followed over the next months.
The first movie in the series was filmed in summer 2011 and it wrapped principal photography on September 15. The Hunger Games hit theaters across the United States on March 23, 2012.