EXCLUSIVE: The latest casting round of tributes and mentors in Lionsgate’s prequel The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes includes Irene Boehm, Cooper Dillon, Luna Kuse, Kjell Brutscheidt, Dimitri Abold, Athena Strates, Dakota Shapiro, George Somner and Vaughan Reilly.
As we told you previously, the film is set during the early days of tyrannical President of Panem, 18-year-old Coriolanus Snow (Tom Blyth) who is the last hope for his fading lineage, a once-proud family that has fallen from grace in a post-war Capitol. With the 10th annual Hunger Games fast approaching, the young Snow is alarmed when he is assigned to mentor Lucy Gray Baird (Rachel Zegler), the girl tribute from impoverished District 12. But, after Lucy Gray commands all of Panem’s attention by defiantly singing during the reaping ceremony, Snow thinks he might be able to turn the odds in their favor. Uniting their instincts for showmanship and newfound political savvy, Snow and Lucy’s race against time to survive will ultimately reveal who is a songbird, and who is a snake.
Boehm will play Lamina, a tribute from District 7; Dillon will play Mizzen, tribute from District 4; Kuse will play Brandy, tribute from District 10; Brutscheidt will play Tanner, tribute from District 10; Abold will play Reaper, tribute from District 11; Strates will play Persephone Price, mentor to District 4’s Mizzen; Shapiro will play Billy Taupe, member of the Covey; Somner will play Spruce, from District 12; and Reilly will play Maude Ivory, another member of the Covey.
Boehm is a German actress, born and based in Berlin. She is best known for her recurring role in the television show Babylon Berlin, which was directed by Tom Tykwer, Achim von Borries and Hendrik Handloegten. She is represented by Rietz Casting & Agentur.
Dillon started his career with a lead role in the German version of the Broadway musical Mary Poppins. He just finished a production about the ballet dancer Rudolph Nureyev as a boy. Dillon is represented by Rietz Casting & Agentur.
Kuse played a recurring role in the German TV show, Schloss Einstein. After 5 seasons, she left the show and appeared in movies such as Vampirates and Himbeeren mit Senf. In 2022, Kuse will join the cast of a new teen comedy show. She is represented by Rietz Casting & Agentur.
Brutscheidt is a German actor who studied acting at the August Everding Theater Academy in Munich. He appeared in many stage productions in Munich and Berlin, as well as at the Opernhaus Zürich and at the Schauspielhaus Düsseldorf. In the 2019/20 season, Brutscheidt was part of the first interdisciplinary studio at Theater Bielefeld. In 2020 he was in front of the camera in Spreewaldkrimi – Tödliche Fastnacht and for the feature film Der junge Häuptling Winnetou, as well as in the Instagram series I am Sophie Scholl (2021) and the made for television-movies Polizeiruf 110 and Staatsfeinde (2022). He is represented by Lucky Punch Management.
Abold graduated from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. In Germany, he has worked with some of the most renowned film directors including Marcus H. Rosenmüller and Dominik Graf. He is also playing the lead role in the upcoming German Amazon series Love Addicts.
Internationally, he is best known for his supporting role in the Netflix series Warrior Nun and will appear in an episode of the Amazon Original series Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan. He is represented by Baumbauer Actors.
Strates is a South African born actress best known internationally for Genius: Picasso in which she appears opposite Antonio Banderas as Maya Picasso, The Good Liar starring Helen Mirren and Ian McKellen and most recently her lead role as Texel Textor in Kike Maíllo’s psychological thriller A Perfect Enemy opposite Tomasz Kot, based on Amélie Nothomb’s novel Cosmétique de l’ennemi. Strates is also set to star in the horror The Seeding by Daniel Young opposite Mickey Rourke later this year. In addition to her international work, Strates also has several German television credits to her name including Aufbruch ins Ungewisse by renown director Kai Wessel and Ze Networkby Christian Alvart which is a German television series produced by CBS Studios. Strates is repped by Baumbauer Actors and Independent Talent Agency.
Shapiro was born in Byron Bay, Australia. Shapiro was one of the top ten finalists for the 2017 Heath Ledger Scholarship. Shapiro’s list of credits include a series regular on Matthew Carnahan’s limited series Valley of the Boom (Nat Geo) where he played real life tech pioneer Stephan Paternot and a series regular for the pilot for The Lost Boys (The CW) where he played the role of David (originally played by Kiefer Sutherland in the feature film). He is represented by Clear Talent Group and Henriksen Talent Management.
Somner recently wrapped as a lead in the feature film Kindling and was recently seen in a guest role in BBC One’s adaptation of Adam Kay’s This is Going to Hurt. He also is seen reprising his series regular role in Netflix’ hit Sex Education. Somner was a leading regular in the Channel 4 comedy Bad Move and was featured in Alexandre Aja’s feature film Crawl, starring Kaya Scodelario. His most recent stage credit was the UK Tour of the award winning People, Places and Things. Further screen credits include a guest role in Grantchester and the short film Eden. He is represented by A&J Artists and The Artists Partnership in the UK and Luber Roklin Entertainment in the US.
Reilly is a New York native actor and singer who hails from four generations of circus performers. She made her small screen debut co-starring opposite Natasha Lyonne in Season 2 of Russian Doll. Reilly works regularly in animation and recently voiced characters for two episodes of Teenage Euthanasia, directed by Scott Adsit. She is repped by Stewart Talent.
The prequel in the $3 billion grossing global franchise will hit theaters around the world on Nov. 17, 2023. Hunger Games franchise sequel producer Francis Lawrence is returning to direct and will also produce with the series producers Nina Jacobson and Brad Simpson. Hunger Games author Suzanne Collins, Tim Palen, and Jim Miller are EPs. Latest draft is by Michael Lesslie off Collins and Michael Arndt’s work. Meredith Wieck and Scott O’Brien are overseeing on behalf of the studio.
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