POPSUGAR Celebrity

How Would Your Favorite Star Fare in the Hunger Games?

Nov 4 2014 - 3:55pm

Get ready, everyone: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 [1] is just weeks away! Since we've already watched all the trailers [2] dozens of times, practically memorized the tracklist for the new soundtrack [3], and figured out which Hunger Games character we are [4], we're thinking of ways to take our fanaticism to the next level: what if the Games were happening right now, in Hollywood? Our editors submitted their picks for celebrities who would absolutely dominate the arena. Read on, and Happy Hunger Games!

Madonna and Christian Bale

"Madonna [5]'s tough, quick-witted, and doesn't pull any punches. She's also lasted four decades in the notoriously tough music industry, so in comparison, how hard can the arena really be? Plus, those biceps. Any time I'm suffering through a tough workout, I think to myself: What would Madonna do? Definitely not give up."

"Christian Bale [6]'s shown off an enviable, chiseled physique in movies from The Dark Knight to American Psycho, but he's also no stranger to deprivation. Remember how scary skinny he was in The Machinist? With his high tolerance for hunger, obvious capability to focus on an end goal, and the ability to sweetly sing his allies to sleep with a rendition of his Newsies hit "Santa Fe," I think Christian is a shoo-in."

Lindsay Miller, entertainment editor

Betty White and James Franco

"Everyone loves Betty White; she's a national treasure. She definitely wouldn't be the most athletic, but she's got the most life experience. Plus, no one would be able to kill Betty White and face themselves again the next day."

"James Franco [7] is a jack of all trades, and that alone makes him an outstanding candidate for the Games. He's constantly surprising the world with a newfound skill, so I wouldn't be shocked if some of those hidden talents would work in the arena. He's gotten lost in so many different roles before, which means he could charm, terrify, and manipulate others. Plus, it's a proven fact that James Franco never sleeps (except in class), so he could use that extra time to stalk the other tributes or just plan his next move."

— Becky Kirsch, director of entertainment

Chloë Grace Moretz and Matthew McConaughey

"Are you KIDDING me? Not only does Chloë have amazing skills as a fighter, as honed in Kick-Ass, she is also superscary. She has the added bonus of being cute as a button, so she could really make people think she's weak and feeble before snapping their necks. CGM FTW."

"Alright, alright, alright. You can't kill Matthew McConaughey [8]. It's impossible. That is all."

— Maggie Pehanick, assistant entertainment editor

Gwyneth Paltrow and Mark Wahlberg

"If two-hour daily sweat sessions with Tracy Anderson aren't enough to give Gwyneth Paltrow [9] the strength and endurance to go the distance in the arena, I don't know what is. Add to that her cooking skills (the cornucopia has gluten-free options, right?), friendly smile (the better to make allies with), and pension for detox diets (no food for days? no problem!), and you've got a winning combination."

"Mark Wahlberg [10] is so buff (did you see Pain & Gain?!), He'd take out the other tributes with sheer muscle, and he'd do it all with a Boston accent. Oh wait, did I mention he's been to prison? And then totally turned his life around? Talk about rising up in the face of adversity. The arena has nothing on Mark."

Lauren Turner, celebrity news editor

Kristen Stewart and Will Smith

"Kristen Stewart [11] may not be known for hitting the gym, but she's one tough cookie, and she did get to show off some fight moves in Snow White and the Huntsman. Plus, her loyal fans around the world would be sure to send her sponsor gifts whenever she was in trouble."

"Not only is Will Smith [12] still a superbuff action star, but likeabilty is an important part of playing The Hunger Games. Who doesn't like Will Smith? And if we know anything from his Fresh Prince days, Will can smooth talk his way out of any sticky situation."

Molly Goodson, vice president of content

Emilia Clarke and Channing Tatum

"Emilia Clarke may be beautiful, but she has proven that she can also be fierce as Game of Thrones heroine Daenerys Targaryen, aka the Mother of Dragons. As strong as she may be, she also has that look where she could be kind of weak. So watch out, because she'll get you after you underestimate her. That's a proven strategy in the arena!"

"Obviously Channing Tatum [13] would win in the Games; he can pretty much do anything. He has the charming personality to win over possible allies, the muscles to succeed in any physical challenge, and most importantly, the dance moves to mesmerize and confuse opponents."

— Shannon Vestal, TV & movies editor

Nina Dobrev and Matt Damon

Nina Dobrev [14]'s a devoted yoga fanatic, which helps mold her perfect body into an ass-kicking machine on The Vampire Diaries. Before becoming an actress she was a gymnast — a perfect talent for a tribute. She has great hair, which would look amazing in a side braid. Plus, she's already proven with her hardcore fanbase that she could start a revolution."

"Matt Damon [15] is older, wiser, and after playing Jason Bourne could clearly outsmart any of these younger tributes. Plus, he was a genius in Good Will Hunting, a con artist in The Talented Mr. Ripley, a poker pro in Rounders, and a thief in Oceans Eleven. Each role has basically prepared him for winning the Games. Also, have you seen his arms lately? Clearly he's gearing up for something big. Might as well throw him into the arena and see what happens."

— Lisa Sugar, editor in chief

Scarlett Johansson and Hugh Jackman

"Not only is Hugh Jackman [16] capable of surviving the physical demands of The Hunger Games (he is the Wolverine, after all) he also has that special something else: charisma. He would be able to charm his enemies intro trusting him with his Aussie accent before he went in for the kill. Plus, who on Earth would ever want to kill Hugh Jackman?"

"Sure, she may not be an obvious choice, but Scarlett Johansson [17] is in top physical form thanks to hours on the set of the Marvel films playing the Black Widow. If she can kick superheroes' butts, she can take on a couple of tributes without batting an eyelash. Plus, don't underestimate Scarlett's seductive charm — she would be able to convince both men and women to join her alliance with one raspy joke."

— Maria Mercedes Lara, associate entertainment editor

Emma Watson and Justin Timberlake

"Emma Watson [18] could really throw off her competitors — she's sweet and nice and seems like she wouldn't be a threat, but based on her This Is the End cameo, she can totally turn up the crazy . . . and wield an axe. Emma's years of plotting and scheming on screen as Hermione would pay off, too, and that British charm means she'd win over viewers along the way."

"Justin Timberlake [19], aka actor/singer/dancer/superhero, seems to be able to do just about anything. (Even Ben Affleck thinks so [20]!) Plus, based on his crazy-busy year, Justin's definitely got the endurance. Even better? His boy-band background proves that Justin works well on a team — but he obviously wouldn't be afraid to handle things solo and strike out on his own, either."

— Laura Marie Meyers, assistant news editor

Lady Gaga and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson

"The art of disguise will be Lady Gaga [21]'s biggest strength in the Games — nobody will ever know where she is, because she can so easily blend into the trees, dirt, or jungle with her crazy costumes. Whether she smears herself with blood, makes a bikini out of shells, or just wears all of her weapons like a weird metal dress, Lady Gaga will succeed at not only being more creative than her fellow tributes but totally creeping them out, too."

"They call him "The Rock" for a reason, you know. Dwayne Johnson will trump the competition thanks to his brute strength, massive muscles, and winning grin (and eyebrows). He'll be the first guy that fellow tributes will want start an alliance with, because he can pick you up and carry you when you're weak and keep you warm during those cold nights in the cave; I would seriously just let him wrap me in cloth and carry me like an adult Baby Bjorn."

— Britt Stephens, associate entertainment editor

Angelina Jolie and Henry Cavill

"Where do I even begin with Angelina Jolie [22]? On screen, she's played Lara Croft, double agent Evelyn Salt, undercover assassin Jane Smith, Grendel's mother, and now evil queen of darkness Maleficent. That means she has expert combat training, a masterful grasp on silent espionage, and she can turn into a dragon twice over. Off screen, she's married to Brad Pitt [23]. Any questions?"

"Everyone knows Henry Cavill as the Man of Steel, but few people also forget that he trained hard to be Theseus in Immortals. He was chosen by Zeus to fight against evil. If you layer that on top of his British charm and superhero charisma, it's hard to imagine a situation in which he wouldn't rise to the top."

— Ryan Roschke, assistant entertainment editor

Kerry Washington and Tom Hanks

"Before fighting to the death, Kerry Washington could train with her professional football-playing husband Nnamdi Asomugha. You know she'd be in good shape. And if she's learned anything from Scandal's Olivia Pope about manipulating people to get out of an impossible situation, she could be the last tribute standing."

"Everybody loves Tom Hanks [24]. He seems trustworthy, and he'll make you laugh; all good reasons to keep him around in the arena. Based on his film résumé, he's also trained for some pretty intense experiences, including spending hours in a enclosed life boat with pirates in Captain Phillips and learning to survive all by himself in Castaway."

— Annie Gabillet, living director


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