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Jennifer Lawrence Scores Lead Role in The Hunger Games

USMagazine, Thursday, March 17, 2011, 7:55am (PDT)

Jennifer Lawrence has solidified her status as Hollywood's new "It" girl.

Earlier this week, the 20-year-old Oscar nominee landed the coveted lead role in The Hunger Games franchise (based on the best-selling book series many have compared to the Twilight phenomenon).

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Lawrence will play Katniss Everdeen, a girl who joins a survival contest in order to save her community. The story takes place in the future, where teenagers are chosen at random to participate on the TV show Hunger Games, which forces them to compete to the death.

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According to The Wrap, the Winter's Bone actress finalized the deal Wednesday; she reportedly beat out fellow actresses Hailee Steinfeld, Chloe Moretz, Emma Roberts and Abigail Breslin for the part.

Lionsgate plans to package the series as a trilogy, which will include The Hunger Games, Catching Fire and Mockingjay, based on the young adult novels by Suzanne Collins.

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As for the role of fellow Hunger Games participant Peeta Mellark? I Am Number Four's Alex Pettyfer is reportedly being considered, as are Josh Hutcherson (The Kids Are All Right) and Hunter Parrish (Weeds).

The Gary Ross-directed film will hit theaters March 23, 2012.

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