10 Biggest Hunger Games Moments That Could Appear In The New Prequel


  • Sunrise on the Reaping
    will focus on the 50th Hunger Games, featuring Haymitch Abernathy and Maysilee Donner as key characters in a deadly, poison-filled arena.
  • The movie adaptation will follow a familiar format of the Hunger Games, showcasing key moments like tribute interviews and the arena reveal.
  • President Snow’s brutality and political maneuvering, Mags’ role as a mentor, and the tragic events in Haymitch’s life post-victory could be explored in the prequel.



It was recently announced that the Hunger Games franchise will soon include the additional prequel Sunrise on the Reaping, promising more details on major moments alluded to in the original trilogy. Taking place 40 years after TheBallad of Songbirds and Snakes, Sunrise on the Reaping will focus on the events of the 50th Hunger Games. This is the year that Katniss Everdeen’s (Jennifer Lawrence) mentor Haymitch Abernathy (Woody Harrelson) won, despite even worse odds. There are already discussions about recasting Haymitch, and even more on what major and minor events will take place in the prequel.

Suzanne Collins’ announcement that she is working on a new novel was swiftly followed by the confirmation of a Sunrise on the Reaping movie adaptation at Lionsgate, with longtime Hunger Games director Francis Lawrence returning. Both the movie and book for Sunrise on the Reaping will follow a more familiar format of the Games; some key moments will include the tribute parade, interviews, and the arena reveal. However, dedicated Hunger Games fans know from dialogue in the original books of some other heartbreaking moments particular to Haymitch’s story that could appear in the prequel.

The Sunrise on the Reaping novel will be released on March 18, 2025. The movie adaptation is set for a November 20, 2026 release date.

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10 The Second Quarter Quell’s Terms Are Announced

Haymitch is picked for a Hunger Games with twice as many tributes.


As most remember, Katniss and Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) are forced to be tributes in a second Hunger Games due to the terms of the Quarter Quell. Every 25 years, a unique Hunger Games takes place with new conditions regarding how the tributes are chosen. For the 75th Hunger Games, previous victors are reaped to return to the arena. For the 25th Games, the people in the districts were compelled to vote on who their tributes would be, while in the 50th Games, twice as many tributes were chosen at the Reaping.

This means that the year Haymitch won, he was one of two male District 12 tributes, as each district was required to send two boys and two girls each, for a total of 48 tributes. Obviously this means that the Games will be bloodier than ever, with more children being sentenced to death and the odds of becoming victor even slimmer. The announcement of these new rules could be a harrowing opening for Sunrise on the Reaping, as a harbinger of an even darker story.

9 Haymitch And Maysilee Become Allies

Haymitch finds an ally in the arena, as Katniss does with Rue.


Two of the District 12 tributes are not given any characterization when Katniss and Peeta watch the tape of the 50th Hunger Games in Catching Fire. However, several moments considering one of the female tributes are likely to be important and emotional in Sunrise on the Reaping. Maysilee Donner is reaped with Haymitch to be in the Games. She is a girl from the merchant class of District 12 (like Katniss’ mother), the aunt of Katniss’ friend Madge, and the original owner of the mockingjay pin.

Haymitch and Maysilee become allies in the arena after she saves his life from one of the careers. They work to survive together, collaborating on gathering supplies and fighting other tributes. Haymitch insists on moving in one direction in the hopes of finding the edge of the arena. When they get there, Maysilee breaks off the alliance, as there are only five tributes left, and she does not want to have to kill Haymitch herself. She is killed by the arena’s violent wildlife shortly after, and Haymitch stays with her until she dies.

8 Mags Working As A Hunger Games Mentor

District 4’s Mags would have been a mentor in the 50th Hunger Games.


In compliance with the timeline, Mags Flanagan (Lynn Cohen) is a Hunger Games character who could return in Sunrise on the Reaping. Mags is the winner of the 11th Hunger Games and is likely working as a mentor in the 50th Games; even if District 4 has enough victors for her to sometimes get a year off, they are likely all on hand to mentor their district’s four tributes this year. Mags mentoring Finnick Odair (Sam Claflin) is still years in the future (in fact, Finnick would have been born around this time).

Showcasing Mags’ compassion toward her own tributes and even those from other districts would highlight the fact that they are all in a terrible situation.

Because the story will focus on Haymitch, the odds of Mags getting a lot of screen time are slim. However, a passing moment showing Mags mentoring her tributes or having a chance encounter with Haymitch could make for a powerful contribution to the story. Years later, Haymitch remarks that Mags is a kind person, and he interacted with her at some point to come to this assessment. Showcasing Mags’ compassion toward her own tributes and even those from other districts would highlight the fact that they are all in a terrible situation.

7 The Tribute Interviews (Focusing On Haymitch & Maysilee)

Caesar Flickerman’s tribute interviews are a staple of the Hunger Games by this time.


Haymitch is interviewed by Caesar Flickerman (Stanley Tucci) as part of the lead-up to the Games. The return of Flickerman is sure to be a glitzy moment in the movie, although it will be interesting to see what his show looks like 25 years earlier. When Katniss and Peeta are watching these interviews, most of the other tributes’ comments are compiled into a montage while a full response from Haymitch is included because he is the winner (which will more than likely also be the case in the Sunrise on the Reaping movie due to time constraints).

Haymitch offers some witty and sarcastic answers to Caesar’s questions, showcasing the public persona (possibly influenced by his real personality) he has crafted to win sponsors. Maysilee’s interview is also likely to receive more attention in the narrative. Nothing is known about her approach to winning over the audience, but in the arena, she is practical and focused; she may try to demonstrate these strengths in her interview.

6 Tigris Working As A Hunger Games Stylist

President Snow’s cousin Tigris becomes a stylist for Hunger Games tributes.


After the events of Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, the future President Coriolanus Snow’s (Tom Blyth/Donald Sutherland) cousin Tigris Snow (Hunter Schafer/Eugenie Bondurant) goes on to become a stylist in the Games. Snow likely helped her get this job, using his influence as a rising political player in the Capitol. For the same reason, Tigris probably would not have been assigned to a District 12 tribute, whose trade is aesthetically challenging and whose tributes tend to die first. As demonstrated by Katniss’ stylist Cinna (Lenny Kravitz), this role connotes real power to influence the Games and the politics of Panem.

Like Mags, the opportunities for Tigris to appear on-screen are limited, but a moment showcasing her character could thematically impact the book/movie. In Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Tigris is more sympathetic towards Lucy Gray (Rachel Zelger) than other Capitol characters and is very disturbed by what her cousin is becoming. By the time of Mockingjay, she has seemingly broken ties with her cousin and helps Katniss in her mission to overthrow the Capitol. A scene with Tigris in Sunrise on the Reaping could show her life as a stylist, emphasizing how horrified she is by the Games.

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5 The 50th Hunger Games Arena Is Revealed

Haymitch finds himself in an arena that is beautiful but deadly.


Haymitch and Maysilee find themselves in an idyllic meadow arena (with some forest sections); it is said to be visually gorgeous and implied to also smell amazing. Some of the tributes are too dazed to do much when the gong sounds, but Haymitch remains focused, retrieves some supplies from the Cornucopia, and runs. However, in another deadly twist characteristic of the Games, it is soon revealed that almost everything in the beautiful arena is poisonous.

Additionally, there are many pretty and seemingly harmless animals and insects that turn out to be violent. This includes carnivorous squirrels, stinging butterflies, and candy-colored birds with spear-like beaks (the last of which are responsible for Maysilee’s death). The reveal of this arena is likely to be impactful just because of its visual appeal. However, it provides ample opportunity for danger in the narrative as well as some possibilities for discussions about things that look pretty but are ugly underneath.

4 The Mockingjay Pin Appears

Katniss may not be the first tribute to carry the iconic mockingjay pin.


Katniss’ friend Madge, the daughter of District 12’s mayor, is one of the biggest cuts the Hunger Games movies made from the books. After she volunteers, Madge gives Katniss her golden mockingjay pin, requesting that Katniss wear it as her token from home in the arena. In the movie, Katniss finds the pin at a stall in the black market. The mockingjay pin is symbolically very important to the Hunger Games franchise, as it comes to be the iconography of the rebellion as well as being associated with music, freedom, and adaptability.

Katniss then discovers that the pin previously belonged to Maysilee, who wore it in the arena as her token. Presumably, after Maysilee’s death, her body and belongings were shipped home, and her sister’s daughter eventually inherited the pin. If the prequel movie wants Maysilee to feature the pin, someone would have to throw it away or sell it to adhere to the movies’ continuity (or maybe there is more than one pin like it). However, it could still be a weighty moment if the mockingjay pin appeared in the prequel.

3 President Snow Poisons Another Political Rival

Coriolanus Snow is known to have murdered people to secure power.


As revealed by Finnick in Mockingjay, Snow’s rise to power included poisoning his rivals.Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes shows this part of his origin story when he poisons Casca Highbottom (Peter Dinklage), who would have opposed Snow’s career at every turn out of hatred for Snow’s father making Highbottom’s theoretical Hunger Games idea into a horrific reality. Many other enemies of Snow’s suffered the same fate in years to come.

Snow is already president at the time of the 50th Hunger Games; however, the book and/or movie could still showcase his brutality and what he is willing to do to remain in power. This may include a scene where he poisons another political candidate who may have become a threat to him. However, Snow will be important to the plot of Sunrise on the Reaping, as he is responsible for a tragedy in Haymitch’s life following the Games.

2 Haymitch’s Final Battle With Girl From District 1

The 50th Hunger Games comes down to Haymitch and a career tribute.


There will be many intense action scenes in Sunrise on the Reaping — including a volcanic eruption taking place in the arena which wipes out half the career tributes. However, the 50th Games ultimately comes down to Haymitch and one of the girls from District 1, resulting in a bloody final fight. Haymitch is at a disadvantage in this fight, as the career districts by then seem to have established the practice of training tributes ahead of time before they volunteer for the Games.

The final District 1 tribute will probably be given some additional characterization to show how her death is still a tragedy, as Hunger Games did with Cato (Alexander Ludwig) and Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes did with Coral (Mackenzie Lansing). Haymitch wins through cleverness rather than brute force. He previously discovered the force field at the bottom of a cliff at the edge of the arena, which deflects objects thrown at it. The District 1 girl launches an axe at Haymitch, which he avoids; it then bounces off the shield and kills its wielder, making Haymitch the victor.

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1 Haymitch’s Family Is Killed

Haymitch’s loved ones are executed because of his actions in the arena.


One of the most painful events expected to take place in Sunrise on the Reaping is the murders of Haymitch’s loved ones. Katniss and Peeta note while watching the tape that the Capitol would have been angry about Haymitch’s victory, as they did not intend for the shield to be a weapon in the Games. The Gamemakers would have thought Haymitch made fools out of them by using the shield to his advantage. Haymitch later tells Katniss that his mother, younger brother, and girlfriend were killed mere weeks after the Games because of what he did.

Haymitch later tells Katniss that his mother, younger brother, and girlfriend were killed mere weeks after the Games because of what he did.

He also tells Katniss that he became an example for future victors, of what would happen if they did not obey Snow’s commands. Haymitch’s life has terrifying implications for Katniss and Finnick, who are beholden to the Capitol because of what Snow could do to Katniss’ sister Prim (Willow Shields) or Finnick’s sweetheart Annie (Stef Dawson). As terrible as it is, Haymitch’s loved ones’ deaths are important to the overall themes and discourse on tyranny in the Hunger Games franchise.

The Hunger Games: Sunrise on the Reaping (2026)

A prequel to the Hunger Games trilogy focusing on the 50th annual Hunger Games, the year that Katniss’ future mentor Haymitch won.

Release Date November 20, 2026

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The Hunger Games is a multi-movie franchise starring Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen. The films are based on the young adult dystopian book series by author Suzanne Collins. The first film was released in 2012, followed by Catching Fire in 2013, Mockingjay Part 1 in 2014, and Mockingjay Part 2 in 2015. In 2023, the fifth film in the series was released, The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes.

Created by Suzanne Collins Cast Jennifer Lawrence , Josh Hutcherson , Liam Hemsworth , Elizabeth Banks , Woody Harrelson , Stanley Tucci , Donald Sutherland , Lenny Kravitz , Willow Shields , Phillip Seymour Hoffman , Rachel Zegler , Tom Blyth , Viola Davis , Peter Dinklage , Hunter Schafer , Jason Schwartzman


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