‘The Hunger Games’ Prequel ‘The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes’ Drops First Trailer

*Photo credit: Lionsgate

Much like Katniss Everdeen, The Hunger Games franchise is never really down for the count, as evidenced by the new trailer for The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes.

Set 64 years before the hit film franchise, the new film explores the origin of the franchise’s sinister antagonist Coriolanus Snow, who is the president of Panem. Coriolanus (Tom Blyth) is reluctantly assigned to mentor District 12 tribute Lucy Gray Baird (Rachel Zegler), after his livelihood is threatened due to his family’s fall from grace in a post-war Capitol. The Hunger Games, once a game of survival, is turned into a spectacle, with them officially being televised for all of Panem. 

After Lucy Gray captivates Panem with her defiant singing during the “reaping ceremony” to select Hunger Games tributes, Coriolanus sees a way to make the Hunger Games work in their favor. United, the two must use political strategy, showmanship, and instincts to come out on top, while battling good and evil to uncover who will be a songbird or a snake. 

The trailer alludes to the political conspiracies within the Capitol, as it shows the rise of the Hunger Games. There’s noticeably a feeling of dread and suspense that emulates from the footage, adding to the mystery behind this prequel. Along with Blyth and Zegler, the trailer gives a first look at fellow cast members Viola Davis, Peter Dinklage, Hunter Schafer, and Jason Schwartzmann. 

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, as well as the rest of The Hunger Games franchise is based on the New York Times bestselling book series by author Suzanne Collins. A film adaptation of Collins’ novel began in 2009, The movie premiered in 2012 starring Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Lenny Kravitz, Donald Sutherland, Wes Bentley, Woody Harrelson, Amandla Stenberg, and Elizabeth Banks. The film debuted at number one at the box office, bringing in $152.5 million and $694.4 million worldwide, becoming Lionsgate’s highest-grossing film ever for the production company. The overall franchise grossed over $2.97 billion worldwide

Time will tell if the magic within the original franchise will live on in this prequel, but the trailer brings back a certain sense of nostalgia that’s sure to excite fans. 

The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes premieres in theaters on November 17. 

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