Here’s the movie poster:
Here’s the book cover:
According to Google images, there are other movie posters that show the protagonist, Katniss Everdeen, but I haven’t seen one anywhere around the Bay Area. Have you? Please let me know if you do see one and even better, send me a photo.
According to the Wall Street Journal: The publisher, Scholastic, considered dozens of cover designs, including portraits of Katniss, before settling on a more ‘iconic’ image of a bird pendant that plays a role in the story.
Lion’s Gate is hopeful that in spite of the female protagonist, males will go see “The Hunger Games:”
“Set in a dystopian future, “The Hunger Games” centers on Katniss Everdeen, a 16-year-old girl who is called upon to fight 23 other teens to the death in a twisted annual survival competition that is televised to the nation of Panem. The quick pace, strong characters and blood sport of author Suzanne Collins’s trilogy helped attract a robust male readership.”
In some ways, I think that the marketing strategy is great news, because they are not playing up the romance to attract females to the movie.
“They’ve taken away the love story and focused on the hero, who, by virtue of her altruism and fire, is going to stand up against this situation,” says Vincent Bruzzese, president of Ipsos MediaCT’s Motion Picture Group, which does market research for movie studios and filmmakers. “What they are doing is marketing the archetypal themes that are gender-neutral.”
If “gender neutral” means not playing up the love story to attract females, I’m all for that.
Jezebel posts: “Maybe, though, it’d be encouraging to see a movie with a dominant female lead transcend the demographic corrals studio analysts have split us all into.”
Absolutely! Moving past those limited “demographic corrals” would be great. If I have to give up Katniss on the movie poster, I suppose that’s a sacrifice I’m willing to make. I have high expectations for this movie.
I’m half way through the book and I love it. Katniss is smart, cool, complex, beautiful and a total bad ass. She is not a Token Feisty. In the narrative, she is never referred to as unusual or an exception of her gender because of she’s brave and skillful. I’ve continually asked on this blog if there are imaginary worlds where sexism doesn’t exist. Though Panem is a dystopia, this may be it.
I do look forward to the day when a female protagonist can show up on her own poster or book cover without scaring boys away.
Also, while I understand the marketing strategy for “The Hunger Games” it’s unacceptable for the exact same kind of invisible female sexism have such a powerful influence on movies for little kids. Parents should not let five year old boys have the power to make five year old girls invisible. And this isn’t really about five year old boys anyway, but their parents. It’s parents who buy books, buy movie tickets, and buy toys. It’s absurd for movie posters for kids to continuously picture no girls at all or girls on the sidelines as do almost all of the children’s movies in 2011. Just because adults live is a sexist world doesn’t mean our kids have to. At the very least, adults should be trying much harder to present the next generation with imaginary worlds where females are not a tiny minority. Girls are, after all, half of the kid population. It’s time for Hollywood to recognize that.