I feel like I may have been reading a different book series.

Lionsgate confirmed today that they’ve chosen the two male leads in The Hunger Games films: Josh Hutcherson will play Peeta, Liam Hemsworth Gale.

Sarah from Cinesnark and I have been bbm debating this all weekend. She says Hemsworth has “cooties” from his association with the Miley Cyrus. My response to this is – I mean, if you were to judge me on who I was sleeping with when I was 20…well… that’s my point. I don’t hate the idea of him as Gale. Physically, I suppose, he can convince me that he can, like, trap things and cook them, survive in the jungle, get hard, both emotionally and physically. I can also imagine him in bed with Jennifer Lawrence.

It’s Hutcherson I’m not into. Sure, Peeta’s supposed to be the baker’s boy, slight, self-sacrificing, and not so skilled at the shooting and the somersaulting, but he did become, in a sense, a full on heartthrob with his PR appeal, a super charm on television, totally teen beat for the Capitol crowd. Hutcherson is little-ish. And so I suppose he has the “weak” part down. But what about the swoon factor? I’m not buying yet that he has a swoon factor. Sarah maintains he can act. I don’t dispute that he can act. But the thought of him as Peeta kinda skeeves me. Right now, the thought of him with Katniss, kissing in their cave all feverish and sh-t, it’s grossing me out. It’s like her younger brother.

Obviously, on paper, any assessment is meaningless because still photos and statistics don’t speak to Chemistry. Maybe Hutcherson will light it up. Maybe whatever he brings to the screen can make up for that intangible quiv that so far, to me anyway, seems lacking in his appearance. Maybe.

But even as I suffered through The Last Song, I could see Liam’s sex appeal. He’s hot. And as Gale he really doesn’t have to do much except run around with his shirt off and a goose in his hand and scowl from time to time. I’m just saying, while I was never Team This or Team That either way reading the books, my initial impression from these casting decisions is that I’m going to want to watch Lawrence and Hemsworth getting it on in the woods, much more than Lawrence saving Hutcherson’s ass all over the arena.

Having said that, as we know, The Hunger Games is all Katniss. Katniss is the centerpiece. If Katniss works, and if Jennifer Lawrence really takes this thing to the next level, I don’t think I’ll mind so much that her boyfriends weren’t how I pictured. But it’s now even more pressure on her to deliver.

I imagine we’ll be discussing this – and fighting about it – during the LiveBlog tomorrow? Can’t wait!

And for those of you new to the site, click here to read my review of the books, and here to read all articles related to the series.

File photos from and Ethan Miller/