Hunger Games in Oakland

hunger_games_oaklandMultiple news outlets are reporting on the Hunger Games being filmed in Oakland. As the image posted in this Star Ledger article indicates, film crew trailers filled the entire parking area for the upper Skyline Drive lot.

There has been no official confirmation, simply an acknowledgement from state officials that the production company formed to produce the Hunger Games had a permit to film in the woods off Skyline Drive.

Will Hunger Games 2 feature scenes shot in Oakland — maybe. Hunger Games 2, “Catching Fire”, is in post production with a November 2013 release date.  But the story line in the second novel does offer some opportunities for winter scenes, and perhaps Oakland will be added to the other locations that already include Hawaii and Georgia.

Hunger Games 3, “Mockingjay”, also offers opportunities where Oakland, NJ-  in January- might be appropriate. The story in Mockingjay is no longer centered on the contest of the Hunger Games, but a rebellion that encompasses North America.

The desolate emptiness of the rolling Ramapo Hills in winter might fit well in either storyline. The Oakland Castle, the ruins of a turn of the century mansion, would be a classic backdrop for a lot of scenes in any of the Hunger Games novels.

It is fairly common for movie studios to begin filming franchise films as soon as possible. This often helps to reduce production costs – such as when they film two different movies at the same time. Also, when dealing with younger actors, there is the concern of physical characteristic changing too much.

Fans of the Hunger Games trilogy, while waiting for the next film release,  might want to indulge in some recipes that have sprung from the Collins’ novels.

The character Greasy Sae, a cook known for various dishes, offers a winter specialty soup – but it would be a cold day in hell before most folks cook something that includes mice meat, pig entrails, and tree bark.

There are other dishes that are a bit more palatable like goat cheese wrapped in basil leaves or chicken and oranges in cream sauce on rice with flower shaped rolls and peas with tiny onions and honey colored pudding.

Oakland has been the location for a variety of famous films, and looks like one more is being added to the list.