The following are noted differences between the original The Hunger Games book and The Hunger Games film. As the novel's author Suzanne Collins was also one of the screenwriters as well as one of the film's producers, it should be inferred that all changes were approved by her. This page contains spoilers from both.
Please note: Changes are now organized by section and are presented in close to chronological order.
- The book is written in the first-person perspective of Katniss Everdeen. On-screen, however, several changes were made to how the story is revealed, rather than using voice-overs or other first-person conventions. Thus we see scenes showing things motivating the action that Katniss would have had no way of knowing.
- President Coriolanus Snow plays a larger role than in the book. His speech to the tributes is heard, he is seen conversing with Seneca Crane twice, and is shown in the control room carefully observing Katniss and Peeta's triumphant arrival back in District 12 at the end of the film. According to director Gary Ross, the decision to increase Snow's role in the film was inspired by a detailed, thoughtful e-mail actor Donald Sutherland wrote to him discussing the character of Snow, which was originally intended as a mere cameo appearance for the noted actor.
- In the book, when the tributes' scores are revealed, it is merely a picture of the tribute, and their score beneath it. In the film, Caesar Flickerman reads out their name, district, and score.
- Seneca Crane is shown commanding the Gamemakers what to do to the arena. There are several cuts to the Gamemakers to show them controlling the arena, e.g., counting down to the start of the games, displaying the day's kills, trying to hit Katniss with fireballs, and releasing the muttations. The film makes it clearer earlier on that the arena is a controlled environment (possibly not even really outdoors), and that things such as the fire that impacts Katniss was designed to prevent tributes from breaching the perimeter of the arena.
- In the film, more of the Cornucopia bloodbath is shown than is told in the book.
- Caesar Flickerman joins Claudius Templesmith as a commentator on the Games. Most significantly, they explain tracker jackers and hint at the trap (land mines) in the Careers' camp (both scripted as replacements for the lack of a Katniss narrative). Unless it's new for these games, Caesar Flickerman doesn't act as an announcer in the book.
- In the book, the cameras are implied to be ubiquitous throughout the arena but are not shown or encountered. In the film when she beds down in a tree on the first night, Katniss hears and notices a camera in a tree hole near her head focusing in on her. Later on, she addresses a camera directly with a salute after she pays tribute to Rue.
- In the film, Katniss's sponsor gifts come with notes from Haymitch Abernathy, arrive in protective cases, and emit a distinctive chime. The parachutes are oval silver mesh. In the book, the gifts do not come with notes and instead, Katniss can sort of figure out what Haymitch is trying to tell her without his actual words being told to her.
- In the film, there are various scenes where there appears to be Panem's official flag, which appears a scarlet-red with a gold eagle clutching grey arrows, standing on a gold pinnacle and surrounded by a gold wreath. In the book, however, there is no mention or description of a flag.
- In the film, Clove kills a lizard with her throwing knives while keeping watch. Katniss doesn't mention it in the book, though.
- A large odds board that is constantly updated is seen in the Capitol. The name, age, height and weight of each tribute is also displayed, and the grid is arranged by district. Presumably, the score from the Gamemakers would also be displayed, but the board is not seen after that occurs. This board does not appear in the book.
- The Everdeens have an old television in the book, but in the film they have a projector.
- The riot in District 11 after Rue's death is not mentioned in the book as Katniss would not know it had occurred. The rebellion in District 11 is mentioned first in Catching Fire. The trigger for the riot is different in the film as it follows Katniss saluting the camera and the people of District 11; in the book she only salutes Rue and doesn't address District 11 until they send her a loaf of bread (which doesn't happen in the film).
- After Katniss has shown up the Capitol with her actions after Rue's death, she briefly thinks (in the book) about how they won't show some of what she has done on TV. The film never gives us a reason to suspect that anything is being kept from the viewers. We also see a conversation with Haymitch trying to convince Seneca Crane not to kill her, as that might serve to make her a martyr and cause further rioting in the districts. Subsequently we see a discussion between President Snow and Crane which leads to the rule change allowing two victors from a single district.
- Seneca is shown being locked in a bright room with a bowl of nightlock to eat. It is implied at the beginning of the second book that he had been hanged.
- Effie Trinket's name is never mentioned in the film.
- In the book, Katniss and Gale are described as having olive skin and black hair. However in the movie, they're both fair and have brunette hair.
- The book says that Katniss is smaller than most of the tributes, but in the movie she's taller than most of them, even some of the Careers.
- In the book, Clove is said to be bigger than Katniss, but in the movie, Katniss is bigger and Clove is in fact smaller than many of the other tributes.
- In the book, Katniss says her eyes are grey, but in the film they are more bluish.
- In the book, Peeta is said to be taller than Katniss, but in the film she is taller.
- In the book, Peeta has blue eyes. But in the movie, Peeta's eyes are brown.
- In the book, Thresh is the biggest, tallest and strongest tribute, but in the movie, both Marvel and Cato are taller, the latter bigger and more muscular as well.
- In the book, Prim has blue eyes, but in the film, they are brown-hazelish.
- In the book, Haymitch is described as being paunchy with curly dark hair and light grey eyes, but in the film he is slim, with straight blonde hair and light blue eyes.
- Effie Trinket's reaping suit, described as spring green in the book, is magenta pink in the movie.
- In the book, during the interview with Caesar Flickerman, Glimmer's outfit is described as being a provocative see-through gold gown. In the movie, she is wearing a shiny, pink cocktail dress.
- In the book, Rue's interview dress is said to have gossamer wings, which are not seen in the movie.
- In the book, Katniss's interview dress is entirely covered in reflective precious gems, red and yellow and white with bits of blue that accent the tips of the flame design. In the film it is a simple red dress with more false fire (as seen in the opening ceremony) implanted in panels along the hem. The flame effects occur when Katniss twirls for the audience. When she spins in the book, the jewels on her dress reflect the light; making her appear to be on fire.
- In the Training Center, Katniss and Peeta are the only ones with matching training outfits. In the film everyone wears the same outfit, the only difference being their district number on the sleeves and backs.
- When Katniss and Peeta are talking on the roof in the book, she is said to be wearing a "...thick, fleecy nightgown...". In the movie, she is wearing a light jacket and a knee-length green satin nightgown.
- In the book it states that each tribute wears a black jacket in the arena. In the film each pair of tributes wears a different colored jacket to represent their district.
- Katniss' arena shirt is green in the book, but is black in the movie.
- In the book, at the chariot rides District 1 are said to be spray painted silver, wearing tunics glittering with jewels, but in the film they are wearing fuchsia outfits with sequins and feathers.
- In the book, Peeta gives Katniss bread when they are around 11/12. In the film they appear to be only slightly younger than they are during the main story.
- When Peeta gives Katniss the bread in the film he only gives her one loaf, whilst in the book he rips some off but gives most of two loaves to Katniss.
- In the opening scene of the film, Katniss was shown singing a lullaby to Prim. In the opening scene of the book, Katniss woke up seeing Prim curled up on her side and sleeping with their mother.
- In the book, Buttercup is described as being a dirty, yellow color, a color that Prim insisted was an exact match of a buttercup flower, which was how he got his name. In the film, however, he is a black-and-white cat.
- Workers are seen presumably going to the mine on the morning of the reaping. In the book everyone is required to go to the Reaping, so the workers would not go to the mine at all on Reaping day.
- In the book, there are both male and female miners. In the movie, the miners are all male.
- In the book, Katniss says that it is a short walk to the fence, whereas in the movie, it seems as if she had to walk a much longer distance.
- In the book, the hole in the fence where Katniss climbs under is behind the butcher. In the movie, it is in an open field. Also, she neither stops to listen for a hum nor does she struggle to sneak under the fence in the film as she is described to do in the book.
- In the book, Prim leaves goat cheese for Katniss the morning of the reaping, which is eaten with the bread Gale provides. In the film, the bread is eaten alone.
- In the book, Katniss meets with Gale at their usual spot and they share a meal. They fish and also gather strawberries and edible plants. In the film Katniss begins to hunt upon entering the woods and is about to shoot a deer when Gale startles it away. He then flushes some quail into flight and Katniss shoots one.
- In the book, The Hunger Games was mandatory viewing for Panem. In the film, Gale and Katniss have a conversation about what would happen if everyone stopped watching, suggesting that the viewing was not mandatory.
- When Gale and Katniss are in the woods, the hovercraft arrives noisily and ominously. In the book, the hovercraft arrives soundlessly.
- Madge Undersee, the mayor's daughter, is not present in the film. Peeta's father is also not in the film; he is mentioned once in regard to Katniss's skill with a bow. As a result of their absence, the concept of class differences within District 12 is absent from the film, as is the Mellark family's interest in the Everdeen family.
- In the book both Gale and Katniss visit the Hob after fishing and gathering, but we only see Katniss at the Hob in the film.
- In the book, there are only three chairs on the stage: one each for Effie, the Mayor, and Haymitch. In the film, six people are seated on the stage, none of whom speaks; conceivably, one could be the mayor.
- In the book, Haymitch Abernathy falls over the edge of the stage in the reaping ceremony. In the film, he is not shown at the ceremony and is not introduced until the train ride to the Capitol.
- In the book, the older children who are more likely to be picked are at the front of the crowd. In the movie, the youngest children are at the front. As a result, Prim does not pass Katniss on the way to the stage; Katniss is behind her in the film.
- In the movie, Effie states that Katniss is the very first volunteer from District 12, implying that she is the first ever. In the book, it says that volunteers from 12 are a rarity and there hadn't been one in decades.
- Lady (Prim's goat) is not in the film but is mentioned.
- Katniss refers to Gale having to take care of his brothers, suggesting the exclusion of Posy Hawthorne.
- In the film Katniss is only permitted 3 minutes to say goodbye to her family, whereas in the book the tributes are allotted at least an hour to say their farewells.
- In the book, as Gale is leaving when his time is up for saying goodbye, he says, "Katniss, remember I-". This doesn't happen in the movie. Instead, he says, "I'll see you soon."
- In the book, Peeta's father gives Katniss cookies after the reaping. He is not seen in the movie but Peeta mentions that Katniss sells squirrels to him.
- In the book, the mockingjay pin was given to Katniss by Madge. In the film, Madge doesn't appear at all, and Katniss obtains the pin from Greasy Sae. She later gives the pin to Prim, promising that nothing bad would come to her while she had it with her. Subsequently, Prim gives the pin back to her sister while saying goodbye at the Justice Building stating simply it's "to protect you."
- In the book, each tribute is allowed a tribute token to take with them into the Games. In the film, it is unclear if the concept of a tribute token has been eliminated as Cinna seemingly hides the mockingjay pin within Katniss' jacket and without Madge to explain its origin, it is never specified as a token. Additionally, there is no mention of any other tokens for other tributes, whereas the book described those of Rue and Glimmer.
The train ride
- In the book, Haymitch staggers in while Effie, Katniss and Peeta are watching a recap of the Reaping, throws up, and falls into his own vomit. Katniss and Peeta help him back to his room. This is omitted in the film. Instead, Haymitch staggers into the car, pours himself a drink, mutters some negative remarks, and then returns to his room, and Peeta follows after him to try to reason with him.
- Scenes of Katniss in her room on the train are changed due to the omission of Peeta's father. We merely see Katniss watching a re-run of a previous Hunger Games with discussion by Flickerman and Templesmith. This obviously distresses her as she definitively turns it off.
- In the book Peeta and Katniss confront Haymitch on the train after he advises them to stay alive. Peeta breaks Haymitch's glass and gets punched in the jaw, while Katniss stabs her knife between his hand and the bottle he reaches for. She also throws the knife to show off her skill in response to Haymitch's taunt. In the film, Peeta does not break Haymitch's glass and the latter pushes Peeta back with his bare foot but does not injure him. The next morning Katniss stabs the table between Haymitch's fingers but does not throw the knife. In the movie, after Katniss stabs the table, Effie exclaims, "That is mahogany!" In the film, it is strongly implied that Haymitch is testing the two.
- In the film, Haymitch explains to Katniss and Peeta the concept of getting sponsors in order to survive. However, in the book, both Katniss and Peeta are already familiar with the concept and understands its importance based on the previous Games that they have seen. (Indeed, many times in the book, Katniss shows detailed knowledge of how the games work.)
- There is no mention of the age at which the Careers volunteer in the book. In the movie, Haymitch Abernathy tells Katniss Everdeen that the Career Tributes train in a special academy until they're 18 and then volunteer. However, according to the odds board in the Capitol, Clove is 15 while Glimmer and Marvel are 17; only Cato is 18. Further, in the book it is noted that formal training of tributes is forbidden, but done in the Career Tribute districts anyway.
- In the film, Katniss seems only aware that Careers come from District 1 until Haymitch tells her they also come from District 2; no mention is made of District 4 Careers. In the book, however, Katniss is already fully aware of Careers coming from 1, 2 and 4, and thinks how they are criticized in District 12.
- In the book, the District 4 girl travels with the Careers and is killed along with Glimmer by the tracker jackers. In the movie, the District 4 girl is killed in the bloodbath at the Cornucopia. This is likely changed so that the main Careers can be more feared and the fact that she played very little importance to the story.
- In the book Katniss notes that Glimmer was keeping guard the night before the tracker jacker attack. In the film, Glimmer is sleeping, as is Clove who is shown sleeping with a knife in her hand. It is unclear if either of them were keeping guard. The book also reveals later that Peeta stayed awake the night of the tracker jacker attack in order to protect Katniss, but this is not evident in the film.
- In the book, Cato and Clove share an emotional attachment to each other, but in the film, he shows interest in Glimmer while Clove appears to be indifferent about Marvel.
- In the film, Katniss is seen selecting a view from her window on a remote control in her room at the Capitol apartment. She lands on an image of a forest and is emotionally affected due to it reminding her of the woods beyond District 12. The book only mentions that she is able to change the view out her window.
- Octavia, Venia and Flavius, Katniss's prep team, are only seen very briefly in the film before taking Katniss to Cinna, while in the book, they are also featured when dressing Katniss up for the interviews with Caesar Flickerman before and after the games.
- In the movie Octavia's skin is not green and Venia's hair is not in spikes.
- In the book, Glimmer and Marvel were wearing jeweled togas while their skin was painted silver during the chariot rides. In the movie they are seen wearing pink feathers and faux-fur costumes.
- In the book, Katniss and Peeta are told by Cinna to hold hands in the tribute parade, but in the film, Peeta suggests that they hold hands and initiates the movement.
- In the book, each of the tribute chariots are pulled by different kinds and colours of horses, whereas in the film they are all black.
- In the book, Haymitch instructs Katniss and Peeta to hide their true strengths and talents in front of the other tributes. In the film, Peeta mentions Haymitch's instructions but Katniss urges him to ignore them. After Peeta falls from a climbing exercise in the training room, the Careers laugh at him and Katniss tells him to throw a (spiked) "metal ball" to prove his strength. This may also be a more explicit reason for the Careers enlisting Peeta into their group.
- In the movie, Foxface is seen testing her knowledge of plants. So it's possible that she did not know that nightlock was poisonous, or she did and she made a fatal error.
- In the book, Peeta enters his private session with the Gamemakers before Katniss. When she enters, she picks from a selection of bows and quivers of arrows at their station, but she chooses to shoot at other targets. In the movie, Katniss goes first and a single bow and five arrows have been placed center stage for her to use.
- In the book, it takes Katniss several shots to become familiar with the Training Center bow's tighter pull before she puts on an impressive display of shooting by targeting not just the target dummy but also a punching bag and an overhead light. She then looks and finds only a few of the Gamemakers have been watching. In the film, she loses the attention of the Gamemakers when her first shot misses. She collects her wits and uses the second arrow to hit the dummy in the heart, but then realizes no one is watching. Incensed at the Gamemakers for ignoring her, she quickly uses a third arrow to skewer the apple out of the roast pig's mouth. She then places the bow on the stand whereas in the book she flings the bow and quiver across the floor as she leaves. The Gamemakers' reaction to the trick shot is less extreme than in the book, which mentions one falling into a punch bowl.
- A buzzer sounded to end each interview after 3 minutes in the book, but in the movie Caesar says the interviews will be five minutes and no buzzer is heard.
- In the book, all of the tributes sat onstage during Caesar's interviews before standing next to him during their own. In the movie, the tributes wait backstage and only one tribute is on stage at a time. During the interview they sit down across from Caesar.
- In the book, after Peeta's interview with Caesar Flickerman, Katniss pushes Peeta into an urn and this cut his hands. In the movie, Katniss pushes Peeta against the wall with her forearm on his neck and shouts at him, but no one gets physically hurt.
- In the movie, the backstory about the Avoxes is not revealed. However, the red-haired girl from the book that Katniss and Gale saw one day in the woods asking for their help can be seen in the apartment and is credited as "Avox Girl" in the film. Katniss makes a comment to Gale that the Capitol might "cut out our tongues" if they are caught trying to escape District 12, but in the book, she isn't aware of this punishment until she reaches the Capitol.
The Hunger Games
- In the book, the Cornucopia is gold and described as looking like a horn. In the film the Cornucopia is made of black steel and resembles (for lack of better comparison) plane wreckage.
- In the book, 11 tributes died on Day 1. In the movie, 13 died on Day 1. (As previously mentioned, the girl from District 4 is the additional death, which also the boy from District 10 is shown to die in the bloodbath as well.)
- In the book, it is said that the tributes are wearing the same black hooded thigh-length jacket for the Games, but in the movie, each district has a different-colored jacket.
- In the bloodbath, the District 9 male doesn't cough up blood all over Katniss. His death is not seen in the movie, although he gets killed by Clove in the book. Instead, the District 7 boy (playing the District 9 male) gets the knife in his back from Clove instead of the 9 male.
- In the book, Katniss collects a bright orange backpack. In the film, the pack is only orange along the back, and partially covered by black webbing.
- Only in the film, after getting away from the Cornucopia, Katniss literally runs into Foxface. They collide and then exchange wary glances, before running away from each other in opposite directions. And then she almost runs into the District 10 male but quickly runs down a hill before he can notice.
- In the book, among the contents of the backpack are a bottle of iodine, which she uses to purify her water, a pack of crackers, a pack of dried beef strips, and a pair of nightvision sunglasses. None are present in the movie. Instead there is a climbing rope, which she uses to tie herself to the branches she sleeps on instead of her belt. There also are matches in a water-proof case, and wire which she uses to make a snare to catch a squirrel for dinner.
- The water bottle Katniss receives in the book is plastic, and holds a half-gallon, but is metal and much smaller in the film. The sleeping bag is described as going over her head in the book, but she is only seen covered up to her waist in the film.
- In the book, Katniss goes several days without water, actually suffering from dehydration. In the movie, although it is difficult to gauge exactly how much time has passed, she finds a source of water relatively quickly, examining moist ground and water-indicating moss.
- In the book, the girl from District 10 is the final dead tribute to be shown in the sky on the first night. In the film, it is the girl from District 9. This is likely a production error as it can be assumed based on the amount of tributes killed that the girl from District 10 died on the first day. Also, the District 5 male, tributes from District 6 and the District 9 male doesn't appear on the sky either.
- In the film, Katniss learns that Peeta is with the Careers when they pass under her tree after killing the District 8 girl. In the book, Katniss learns Peeta is with the Careers when he volunteers to go back and finish off the District 8 girl after the cannon doesn't sound to signify her death after their first attack.
- In the book, hovercrafts picked up the dead tributes' bodies. The film does not indicate any retrieval mechanism, although they obviously retrieve bodies somehow.
- In the book as Katniss flees from the Gamemaker's fire, several animals originally flee with her until they outrun her. In the movie, no animals are seen fleeing from the fire.
- In the book, Katniss receives burns to one of her calves. In the film, her thigh is injured.
- In the book Katniss falls asleep from the effects of the fire and awakens just before the Careers find her. It is near evening and they have also been affected by the fire as they are coughing and look beat up. In the film the Careers see Katniss just after she reaches the river and escapes the fire and pursue her in daylight. They also taunt her during the pursuit and have not been affected by the fire.
- In the book the tree Katniss climbed to escape the Careers had many branches that got progressively thinner as she climbed higher. In the movie the branches are substantial, and we only see the thinner branches when she climbs up to the Tracker Jacker nest.
- In the book Glimmer attempts to climb the tree Katniss is in after Cato tries and falls. She also attempts to shoot at Katniss when she stops climbing. In the film Glimmer does not attempt to climb the tree and shoots at Katniss from the ground. Cato also attempts to shoot at her but did not do so in the book.
- In the film, Rue is the one who suggests that Katniss should saw down the branch the tracker jacker nest hangs from so that they would fall on the camp below, while in the book, she merely points out to Katniss that she is in close proximity of the tracker jackers, and Katniss comes up with the idea of releasing them onto the campsite herself.
- In the book, after Glimmer died, Katniss used a stone to remove the bow from her tight grip. In the film, it appears she has to break the dead tribute's fingers to get at the bow. Also, in the book Katniss struggled to get the quiver which was underneath Glimmer, but it is right beside her and easily accessible in the film.
- In the book Katniss saws off the branch with two attempts, starting at night, then resuming in the morning. In the film, she doesn't see Rue until the morning and thus only does this in the morning.
- The tracker jackers respond much more slowly to Katniss' sawing of the branch than in the film. In the book they were affected by the smoke from the fire, the effects of which lasted through the night.
- In the book, Katniss meets Rue while bathing in a stream. In the movie, she meets Rue after awakening covered with leaves. Also, Rue tells her about District 11 in the book.
- In the book, Rue chews up the medicinal leaves that relieve Katniss' burn pain after Katniss wakes up from the effects of the tracker jacker attack. In the movie, Rue puts full leaves on Katniss' stings while she is still hallucinating due to the effects of the tracker jacker venom. The film also indicates that Katniss is unconscious for several days, whereas the book suggests a shorter interval.
- In the book, the boy from District 10 dies after Katniss wakes up from the effects of the tracker jackers. In the movie, he dies while Katniss is still hallucinating.
- In the book, the boy from District 3 leaves with the Careers to investigate Rue's signal fire, because they were certain that his trap was foolproof. In the movie, the boy from District 3 stays behind and chases after Foxface, returning to the exploded camp shortly before the Careers.
- In the book, Foxface hopped over the mines, and when she landed, she thought one was going to explode. In the film, the "safe" steps are fairly obvious and she has no difficulty jumping to them to reach the pyramid.
- In the book Katniss uses 3 arrows to split open the bag of apples while in the film, she uses only 2 arrows.
- Only in the book, after the Careers' food supply was destroyed, Katniss sees Foxface in the ruins of the explosion the next morning. Foxface is laughing as she finds a knife blade and a metal pot that were not damaged in the explosion.
- In the book, Katniss' hearing in her left ear is repaired by Capitol medics after she and Peeta win the games. The movie shows that she only momentarily loses her hearing.
- In the book Cato's initial reaction to finding the supplies destroyed is more severe, as he tears his hair out and beats the ground. The male tribute from District 3 throws some stones to show the Careers that all the mines have activated and they examine the wreckage to try and find anything to salvage. Cato then yells at the boy before breaking his neck when he turns to flee. In the film Cato immediately confronts the boy upon returning to the campsite before breaking his neck in the middle of yelling at him.
- Rue is attacked with the spear while in the trap in the book. In the movie, Katniss cuts Rue free and she is hit with Marvel's spear while standing. Immediately Katniss, whose back is to him, turns and kills him with an arrow.
- Marvel is shot in the neck by Katniss' arrow and drowns in his own blood in the book. In the movie, he is shot in the heart and immediately dies.
- In the film, as Rue is dying from the spear attack, Katniss comforts her and tries to tell her she will be okay whereas in the book, she thinks to herself that "there's no point in comforting words, in telling her she's alright. She's no fool.
- In the film Katniss throws the spear away from Rue's body. In the book, she leaves the spear in Rue so it will be collected along with the body and not be available for anyone else to use. (We don't see what happens to any of the dead tributes in the film, so not changing this might not have made sense.) She also isn't seen collecting the arrow that killed Marvel.
- In the book, Katniss hears both cannons for Marvel and Rue. However, in the film, we don't hear Rue's cannon.
- Katniss did not receive bread from District 11 in the movie after Rue's death.
- The film does not appear to show Katniss dwelling on her first direct human kill, although a sequence after Rue's "tribute" showing her weeping and symbolically trying to clean blood of her hands could be in part a reaction to this as the act of trying to wash figurative blood off the hands is a trope often employed by film characters who kill for the first time.
- In the book, Claudius Templesmith repeated the rule change that both tributes from the same district will be declared victors if they are the last two standing twice. In the film, it was only announced once.
- In the book, after Claudius announces the new rule that two tributes from the same district can be victors, Katniss impulsively yells out Peeta's name. In the movie, she only whispers his name.
- In the book, when Katniss is looking for Peeta in the stream, she yells out "Peeta!" and Peeta answers "You here to finish me off, sweetheart?", before she finds him wounded. In the movie, she just finds him camouflaged when he grabs her boot.
- In the book, Katniss checks Peeta's wound by stripping the lower half of his body to check his thigh. In the film, the wound is visible through a cut in his pants.
- In the book, Katniss cleans Peeta by rolling him into the stream and helping him walk downstream and also partially disrobing him, including cleaning his underwear. This part is left out in the film.
- In the book, when Peeta is telling Katniss about his early admiration for her, he also tells her that his father initially wanted to marry her mother but her mother married a different man (Katniss' father). This also explains why Peeta's father promised Katniss that he will take care of Prim when they are in the games while he is giving the cookies to her after the reaping (which is also not shown in the film): Prim looks a lot like Katniss' mother.
- Katniss doesn't tell Peeta a story about how she got Prim's goat, Lady, in the film. The book reveals the true story while Katniss makes up a story to tell Peeta that the Capitol would be willing to air.
- In the book, Katniss gives Peeta some berries mixed with sleep syrup provided via parachute to make him sleep while she goes to the feast. In the movie, she leaves while he is fitfully sleeping and wracked with fever that night.
- In the book, the backpacks left to the tributes in the Cornucopia that contained "something they desperately need" were all different colors and sizes, but in the movie, they appeared to be identical except for the district numbers.
- In the book, as Clove pins Katniss to the ground, Katniss yells out Peeta's name to distract her. In the movie, she struggles mightily but remains essentially silent.
- In the book, Thresh kills Clove by smashing a rock into her skull. In the film, he smashes her against the Cornucopia twice and her neck is snapped. Also, in the book, Cato was nearby and rushed to save Clove as she was being held up by Thresh, but he was too late. In the movie, he was nowhere to be seen though Clove screams for him before she is killed.
- In the film Thresh hears Clove boasting about how the Careers killed Katniss' "... little friend ... Rue" which drives him to attack Clove. He then turns to Katniss and says to her "just this once, 12: for Rue" as he spares her life and runs off. In the book his exchange with Katniss is longer, and she specifically tells him that she sang to Rue to ease her passing. This obviously touches Thresh, prompting him to spare her.
- In the book Thresh takes both his and the District 2 Cornucopia backpacks, whereas in the film he merely takes his own.
- In the book, it mentions how Peeta has blood poisoning and his medicine is in a syringe (antibiotic). In the movie, there is no mention of blood poisoning and the medicine is in the form of a balm similar to that provided to Katniss earlier in the film for her leg burn. As such it also used to treat Katniss's forehead wound that came from Clove's knife during their struggle at the Cornucopia. In the book, the wound did not fully recover until she was named a victor and treated back at the Capitol for several days.
- Peeta's leg is almost completely healed after the medicine is supplied in the film, whereas he remained severely injured in the book as the medicine did not treat the wound itself.
- In the book, Katniss mentions kissing Peeta many times to manipulate the viewing audience. In the movie, other than a quick peck on the cheek from Katniss, we only see them kiss once, and it's implied as being genuine affection rather than an act.
- In the book, Peeta and Katniss are stuck in the cave without food or water for days when rain and thunderstorms prevent them from hunting. As a reward for showing on-screen affection, they receive goat cheese, rolls, fruit, and a tureen of the wild rice and lamb stew Katniss told Caesar Flickerman she liked so much in her interview. The rain stops after Thresh is killed. In the movie, there is no rain, no food from Haymitch, and they are able to hunt the day after acquiring the medicine.
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire — the second film based on the Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games trilogy, and one of the most anticipated movies of the year — is out today. Collins served as one of the screenwriters on the first film, but did not repeat that role in the sequel (which was adapted by Simon Beaufoy and Michael Arndt). Though the film still follows Collins' original story, there are plenty of intriguing deviations that change key elements of the narrative.
What was lost or added to The Hunger Games: Catching Fire on its way to the big screen? Here, a guide (spoilers for both the book and the movie to follow):
1. President Snow gets a granddaughter
Because the book is told from Katniss' perspective, we don't get to see how President Snow is experiencing the Games, or his subsequent interactions with his young granddaughter. The film gives us far more perspective on his day-to-day-life; we see Snow's granddaughter talking to him about how she looks up to Katniss, and how she wants to be in love the same way that Katniss and Peeta are.
Why it's important: These cinematic scenes present a more human, multidimensional side of Snow than Katniss ever sees, and furthers the idea that Katniss has become such a hero to some in the Capitol that even the president's own family supports her.
2. The Gamemaker never pulls out his watch
In the book, Katniss and Head Gamemaker Plutarch Heavensbee share a dance at the Capitol, where Plutarch shows her an elaborate watch that features a subtle image of a mockingjay — the symbol of the rebellion — on it. The movie features a similar dance scene, but Heavensbee doesn't reveal his watch.
Why it's important: The watch foreshadows Heavensbee's alliance with the rebellion (and his support of Katniss). It also foreshadows the Quarter Quell Games, which are held in an arena that is set up like a clock.
3.The absence of Twill and Bonnie
Early in the book, Katiniss meets Twill and Bonnie during a hunting trip to the woods. They have run away from their district, and are seeking refuge in District 13, which Katniss believes no longer exists. These characters have been eliminated from the film.
Why it's important: The possibility of the existence of District 13 is only revealed at the end of the film, but Twill and Bonnie's revelation in the book provides a little bit of hope for Katniss. She eventually realizes that the Capitol is using old footage from that district in their news reports — a foreshadowing of its existence.
4. The absence of Darius
In addition to Twill and Bonnie, one other important character is eliminated from the film: Darius, a kind-hearted peacekeeper who steps in when Gale is being beaten in the book. He is knocked down by the peacekeepers who are whipping Gale and is eventually turned into an Avox — a person punished for treason — in the Capitol.
Why it's important: In the book, it's clear that some of the peacekeepers are not as violent and evil as the others. Darius attempted to save Gale's life and was punished for it. The Capitol removes his tongue and makes him into a servant — one who Katniss encounters when she visits the Capitol later on.
5.The reason for Gale's whipping
In the book, Gale is reportedly taken into the town square and whipped for hunting, which is against the law. In the film, Gale is beaten when he tries to prevent the peacekeepers from beating up an innocent victim in District 12.
Why it's important: The film turns Gale into more of a hero for standing up for others, while the book features him simply getting caught due to the ever-present need for food.
6.Heavensbee's behind-the-scenes machinations
In the book, the audience doesn't see Heavensbee during the Quarter Quell; the focus is only on Katniss and her experiences. The film offers the other side of the story: We see him manipulating President Snow and convincing him to keep Katniss alive, despite the president wanting to see her killed early on.
Why it's important: In the book, we never realize how supportive Heavensbee is of the rebellion until its closing moments. The film implies that many of his decisions — from volunteering to be head gamekeeper to leaking Katniss information about the Games — were all part of his plan to support the rebellion and free Katniss.
7.District 12's Act of Defiance
In the film, widespread acts of rebellion are in vogue everywhere, which starts with the three-finger salute seen in District 11. That salute is replicated during the reaping in District 12, when Katniss and Haymitch are chosen to go into the Quarter Quell.
Why it's important: In the film, District 12— which hasn't had a rebellion like some of the other districts — is also showing major signs of rebellion. The Capitol's control over it is slowly coming to an end.
8.Haymitch's victory is never discussed
The last person who competed and won in the Quarter Quell was District 12's own Haymitch, who survived by using the arena's force field to his advantage. In the book, Peeta and Katniss watch several of the Hunger Games tapes and see Haymitch's victory unfold. In the movie, they don't watch the video, and the account of Haymitch's victory is absent.
Why it's important: The force field in Haymitch's video foreshadows the force field that will also appear in Katniss and Peeta's Quarter Quell. The characters learn how it can be used against their opponents in the book, but not in the film.
9.Rue's picture on the ground in the Training Room
In the book, Peeta is sent alone to have his talent judged by the gamekeepers. It's only after the judging has occurred, and Peeta and Katniss are having dinner, that Peeta reveals that he drew a picture of Rue on the floor. In the film, Katniss sees the picture on the ground when she walks into the training room.
Why it's important: The scene of Katniss arriving in the training room in the film has a greater emotional edge, as Katniss remembers Rue — and the fact that Rue, like so many innocent children before her, was sent to her death by the Capitol and President Snow.
10.The Games take up much more of the story
In the book, the actual Games take up less than a third of the story, as Collins explains and explores the world outside the main event. In the film, they come into play much earlier.
Why it's important: The change is natural for a film that's been sold on its action — but the book offers more of an emphasis on the build-up to the Games (and the talk of people rebelling) than the Games themselves.