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With two Emmy Awards under his belt for his writing contributions on the HBO miniseries Game Change, Danny Strong has taken on a number of feature projects, among which is the adaptation of the final Hunger Games book Mockingjay. Strong penned the screenplay for the first part of the planned two-part adaptation and he's now been approved to move forward on Part 2.
Much in the way Breaking Dawn and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows were split into two movies to close out their respective series on the big screen, the final book in Suzanne Collins' popular series is getting similar treatment. THR says Strong had a deal to write the screenplay for both Mockingjay Part 1 and Part 2, however the second part was contingent on the studio liking Part 1. Apparently, they're happy enough with his efforts to give him the thumbs up to get started on the second part.
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 is expected to arrive in theaters in 2014. The second film in the series, Catching Fire, will hit theaters this fall and will see stars Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson reprising their roles as Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark respectively. Catching Fire focuses on the quarter quell and another arena game, which is something of an all-star event this time around, putting past tributes back into the arena for another fight-to-the-death match. Mockingjay shifts the format to focus on the rebellion against the Capitol. With that in mind, it seems right that Lionsgate would want to keep the same screenwriter for both parts of the final book's adaptation, for consistency's sake, especially if they liked what Strong submitted for the first part.
Game Change was a book-to-movie adaptation, and Strong also has Dan Brown's yet-to-be-published The Lost Symbol on his list of upcoming projects. Between those and Mockingjay Parts 1 & 2 he's really building quite a resume of notable writing credits for anticipated adaptations. But I'm sure I'm not alone in thinking at least some part of me will always associate him for his recurring role as Jonathan on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. He was a member of The Trio? You've heard of them.