I loved this movie and can't wait to read the books....Catching Fire comes out in November 2013.
Yes, the movie comes out in Nov 2013. Seems like a loooooooong time away. :(
Catching Fire may be delayed and, as it always is in Hollywood, it's about money. Apparently, Gary Ross is asking for A LOT more money to direct: Hunger Games Sequel Catching Fire Could Be Delayed, but Why?! - E! Online
Yes, he won't be returning as director for the second film. I'm ok with it. I think he did a good job, but not such a fantastic job that noone else could possibly direct it. Harry Potter had a number of directors and the franchise didn't suffer. Twilight has also had a different director since the first film. To me it's most important that Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson come back for the sequel.
I thought Woody was very good in this too, even though he doesn't physically resemble the description of Haymitch in the books at all. I will say that I enjoyed him in Zombieland. I was surprised at how good he was in that.
ETA: Funny that Gary Ross leaving may have had very little to do with money: Exclusive: Gary Ross Leaves 'The Hunger Games' Franchise, Won't Direct 'Catching Fire' Sequel | The Playlist
ITA CCL - the franchise should be fine with a different director. As long as Suzanne Collins is involved, I think the sequels will be fine. Really, as long as the script is strong, I think there are a number of directors who would do a fine job.
Interesting that he won't be directing it but if his heart's not in it, I'm more than okay with him opting out. As you mentioned, CCL, Twilight and Harry Potter did just fine when they switched directors and as Critical mentioned, it's all about the script (since I think we all agree the actors did a fantastic job with their characters!), so I think they'll be okay.
I was heartened to read that Suzanne Collins has already received the script and that the screenwriter looks forward to collaborating with her and tweaking it according to her wishes! :yay
Hunger Games: Catching Fire Script Delivered to Suzanne Collins! - E! Online