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'Hunger Games' post-apocalyptic world looks mighty familiar

November 15, 2011|By Mary Forgione | Los Angeles Times Daily Travel & Deal blogger
  • North Carolina provides the backdrop for "The Hunger Games," with Jennifer Lawrence and Gale Hawthorne.
North Carolina provides the backdrop for "The Hunger Games,"… (Murray Close / Lionsgate )

"The Hunger Games" movie trailer released Monday to hungry fans presents a leafy, green, post-apocalpytic nation in which children in a dystopian society are commanded to fight to the death. The chilling fantasy is set in the ruins of the United States in a country called Panem that looks a lot like ... North Carolina.

Indeed, "Games," which opens March 23, 2012, and is based on the 2008 book by Suzanne Collins, was filmed over the summer in Asheville, Barnardsville, Black Mountain, Cedar Mountain, Charlotte, Concord, Hildebran and Shelby, N.C., the Charlotte Observer reports.

Anyone who has hiked in the national forests around Asheville and points south might recognize the lush woods and low-slung mountains — or maybe not.

Noelene Clark writes on the L.A. Times' Hero Complex blog that the trailer presents a "world that’s both gritty and surreal."

"...[I]t provides a glimpse of Panem that is far less shiny and clean than posters promoting it. The trailer is culled from footage of the first half of the film alone, providing only a few seconds from the battle arena."

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