Austin Butler Reveals He Auditioned to Play Peeta in Hunger Games: ‘I Don’t Even Think I Got a Call Back’

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Austin Butler has range. The actor has starred in everything from musical biopics to sci-fi epics to WWII dramas, but he recently revealed that he was almost part of one of the biggest YA franchises in the world.

While promoting his new film The Bikeriders, Butler told BuzzFeed that he actually once auditioned to play Peeta in The Hunger Games — unsuccessfully, that is.

“I auditioned for The Hunger Games and I didn’t get it at all,” said Butler. “I don’t even think I got a call back, what’s the character, Peeta? Josh Hutcherson got that, he’s great.”

Josh Hutcherson did in fact snag the role of Peeta Mellark, starring alongside Jennifer Lawrence and Liam Hemsworth as Katniss and Gale, respectively. The first film in The Hunger Games series was released in 2012, around the same time that Butler was filming ABC Family's Switched at Birth.

Josh Hutcherson in *The Hunger Games* (2012)

THE HUNGER GAMES, Josh Hutcherson, 2012. ph: Murray Close/©Lionsgate/Courtesy Everett Collection

Josh Hutcherson in *The Hunger Games* (2012)
©Lionsgate/Courtesy Everett Collection

However, if we were truly in the alternate universe in which Austin Butler played Peeta, he wouldn't have been able to play Sebastian Kydd in The Carrie Diaries, which aired in 2013 only months after The Hunger Games' release. Could you imagine being robbed of that?

Thankfully, there are more opportunities in the future for Butler to join The Hunger Games universe if he so wishes. Following the success of The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes last fall, Suzanne Collins announced the release of another prequel novel titled The Hunger Games: Sunrise on the Reaping. The book will arrive first in March 2025, with the movie coming to theaters shortly after in November 2026. (Find out everything you need to know about Sunrise on the Reaping here.)

The new installment in the franchise will 11 Things That Might Happen in the Haymitch 'Hunger Games' Book and "revisit the world of Panem twenty-four years before the events of The Hunger Games, starting on the morning of the reaping of the Fiftieth Hunger Games, also known as the Second Quarter Quell.”

I don't know about you, but we could definitely see Butler playing a young version of Woody Harrelson. Just a thought! Watch Austin Butler's full BuzzFeed interview with his Bikeriders costar Jodie Comer below:

Originally Appeared on Teen Vogue

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