Actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, who portrayed a character in The Hunger Games, passed away during the middle of filming for the Mockingjay movies. His character, Plutarch Heavensbee, is a central figure in Catching Fire and Mockingjay Part 1. After seeing Part 2, I can say he had a notable lack of importance, though the plot itself may have lent to that analysis, as the movie focuses on the war action more than the political machinations of its prequel.

According to an interview by Director Francis Lawrence:

"[Hoffman] had two substantial scenes left and the rest were appearances in other scenes. We had no intention of trying to fake a performance, so we rewrote those scenes to give to other actors… The rest, we just didn’t have him appear in those scenes. There’s no digital manipulation or CG fabrication of any kind."

(Bravo to the crew on this decision, post-mortem digitalization is beyond the pale...)

From my viewing, I believe one of those substantial scenes was The outro following Coin's death, where Haymitch reads a letter from Plutarch to Katniss.

Is this one of the significant scenes, and which are the other scenes that were changed?

  • "The rest, we just didn’t have him appear in those scenes. There’s no digital manipulation or CG fabrication of any kind." - Having scene The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2 recently, I find this hard to believe. A CGI Phillip Seymour Hoffman really stood out to me at one point. Nov 30, 2015 at 8:56
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    @DrRDizzle - I saw some CGI in at least one point. There was a view where Plutarch was standing in line with his head turned towards the left pointing at the camera. IIRC, it was during one of Coin's speeches. You could definitely tell Hoffman's image was imposed over someone else's. The lines were blurry around the face and it didn't quite fit correctly on the body. A very poor job, if you ask me. Nov 30, 2015 at 12:50
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    @cde Why did you roll back my edits? Why shouldn't Hoffman's full name be used in the title? And "during the middle of filming for" is simply bad English, it's either "during filming" or "in the middle of filming", but not a combination of both.
    – BCdotWEB
    Nov 30, 2015 at 22:26
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    Congratulations, this question is the winner of the corresponding topic challenge.
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Dec 7, 2015 at 0:22
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    You seem to be quite defensive about this question, judging from your two rollbacks on it :-) Jun 21, 2016 at 15:23

1 Answer 1


According to Nina Jacobson, the producer, in this answer on Quora:

Practically, Phil had shot about 80% of his scenes. What we had to do with the remaining 20% was to give two key scenes to Liz Banks and Woody Harrelson. In MJ1, Effie gives Katniss Cinna's design for the mockingjay uniform instead of Plutarch, as was originally scripted. In MJ2, Haymitch reads a letter in a scene that, in the book and the original script, takes places between Katniss and Plutarch. Without a doubt, Phil would be a bigger presence in the movie if he had stayed with us. I miss him at many levels.

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