U.S. actress Jennifer Lawrence says she loves being known for her iconic role of Katniss Everdeen in the critically acclaimed "The Hunger Games" blockbusters but she will never give up working in low-budget, character-driven, independent films such as David O. Russell's upcoming drama, "American Hustle."
Asked at a recent news conference for "Catching Fire," the second installment of "The Hunger Games" franchise, if she was prepared for the notoriety that accompanies such high-profile projects, the 23-year-old Kentucky native said: "We already had 'Harry Potter' and 'Twilight' -- so we were, obviously, surprised by the success; how could we not be? -- but we did know what to expect to a certain extent.
"And if I was going to be associated with a character for the rest of my life ... that's a hard thing to think about. But I love this character and I'm proud of her and I would be proud to be associated with this movie and this character for the rest of my life," Lawrence said of her "Hunger Games" alter-ego. "That being said ... I started doing indies and I'll end in indies. I enjoy doing it. Sometimes when you find a really great character like Rosalyn in David's movie, it's better than vacation. It's exciting."
Set in post-apocalyptic Panem, in what was once North America, "Catching Fire" picks up shortly after Katniss and Peeta [played by Josh Hutcherson] return home as the lone survivors of the 74th annual government-orchestrated Hunger Games. The games are grueling televised competitions in which impoverished children and teens from the nation's 12 districts must fight to the death until the last competitor remains. Katniss defies the rules of the event by declaring her love for Peeta and refusing to kill him.
The second movie follows the pair as they deal with the fallout from their victory, which has inspired rebellions against the government and incurred the wrath of President Snow [played by Donald Sutherland.]
The movie earned $161 million at the North American box office when it opened last weekend.
Lawrence won an Academy Award for Best Actress this year for her performance in Russell's indie dramedy, "Silver Linings Playbook." "American Hustle," their second film together, is to open in theaters Dec. 13.