Sam Claflin was sure he’d whiffed his audition. He was in Los Angeles on a promotional tour for Snow White and the Huntsman when his agent sent him in to read for Finnick Odair—District 4’s charismatic golden boy whose motives remain unclear to Katniss as they head back into the Games. “Finnick is this tanned, green-eyed, sex god,” laughs the 26-year-old Brit over sodas at his Waikiki hotel on a day off from shooting. “I’m thinking I’m brunette, I have loads of stubble, at the time I was by no means in shape. This guy walked in just after my audition who looked like Brad Pitt in Thelma and Louise. Yeah, I’m not going to get this.”
But the filmmakers were after more than just some young stud. “Sometimes you get someone with the swagger but not the soulfulness or the other way around,” explains Jacobson. “Sam had both. He is such a sweet, sweet fellow.” He has a sweet fiancée as well, the British actress Laura Haddock who walked by the restaurant during our interview, excitedly holding up towels and waving at him as she made her way to the beach.
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