Some of the first semi-reliable casting news is coming down the pipe for The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and the odds seem to be going in our favor. Slash Film reports on good authority that Philip Seymour Hoffman has been offered the role of Plutarch Heavensbee, the new Head Gamemaker in the upcoming sequel. Plutarch is a key role on the level of Seneca Crane, the conniving weasel with impeccable facial grooming in The Hunger Games. Without getting too spoilery, he's kind of a big deal.
Hoffman, who won the Oscar for Best Actor back in 2006 for Capote, could really work quite nicely as the more jolly natured Capitol bureaucrat and would be a fine addition to what's already a pretty fierce ensemble cast. Besides, you know you want to see PSH all done up in the finest Capitol fashions, looking his funkiest since Boogie Nights. But all kidding aside, Hoffman has the kind of experience and range that could really help to ground the movie and bring out the best in some of the younger cast (I'm talking to you Liam Hemsworth). Given that he's recently shown he's not as adverse to a blockbuster as one might think thanks to his work on Mission: Impossible III it's not entirely improbable that he might actually sign on for this.
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is currently slated for a November 22, 2013 release date so there's plenty of time to let all of this smolder with speculation.