In a new interview with Vulture, Josh Hutcherson talks about when he first read the Hunger Games books and his approach to Peeta. He also discusses whether he’d be interested in being a part of the TV version of The Kids Are Alright, and, of course, Journey 2!
So how did you first come across The Hunger Games books? What was your reaction?
I read them as soon as I found out they were being made into films. I went and got the books, and I devoured them. I read like eight hours a day! And I just fell in love with them. I love the whole world that was created, and I like the parts that are based in this reality, like how reality television is, and how our government is the one percent and we’re the 99 percent.
What’s your approach to playing Peeta?
I feel like I’m a lot like Peeta, and I don’t know what I would have done if I didn’t get the part. Wouldn’t I be a bad actor if I couldn’t play myself? I think one of my biggest struggles was getting Peeta to be as strong as possible. He can come across a little soft — because he’s admitting his love for Katniss, and he’s sensitive. But he’s got a backbone. He’s got strong beliefs. He’s a people person. And we have the same sense of humor.
But you’re more of a prankster …
Well, on Journey, I had this running prank going when we were shooting in the jungle, where I would take a stick, or a twig, and poke it in someone’s ear and make them think they had bugs crawling in there. Vanessa [Hudgens] and I were messing with Luis [Guzman] for about eight minutes once, poking something in his ear, pulling it out, watching him freak out. It was so hard not to laugh. And finally he went, “I see you.” That was the best one for sure. And on Hunger Games, I took a dummy, one that the tracker-jackers were supposed to have attacked, and I put it in Jennifer’s bathroom, and when she opened the door, she peed her pants. Or so I was told — she told me later. I did not get visual confirmation on that one. I think I’m basically a 5-year-old at heart.
Read the full interview here.