One of the biggest mysteries surrounding The Hunger Games franchise has nothing to do Katniss' sponsors, Peeta's brainwashing or Mockingjay's inexplicably short ending. From day one, fans have wondered why author Suzanne Collins never chose to give Mama Everdeen a first name.
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Well, following the Ray Donovan presentation at Showtime's Television Critics Association Tour day, I caught up with Paula Malcomson, who plays Abby Donovan in the thrilling new drama in addition to starring as Katniss' mother in The Hunger Games films, to see if she had any insider information on the subject.
"There's not a lot on the page," Malcomson told me about the role, but adds, "When I read those books, I was excited about the possibilities and felt like this could be a really fun role." Although Malcomson quickly realized she had become a little too invested in creating weight to her performance.
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"In the first movie, I was doing it for real. I didn't want to show up and be all pretty. I wanted to go in there and be hungry, be oppressed. I quickly realized I was acting like I was in a different film from the rest of the cast [laughs]. I just think there's a heaviness that I was bringing that I don't know if it was the story they were trying to tell in this. But there's such a great character progression with her. She has this rebirth throughout the series, so I play it out in my head a lot."
In creating an elaborate backstory for her character, Malcomson also created a first name for her character. "I named her Clara," she tells ETonline. "I don't know why, but that just came to me."
The actress recently wrapped filming on The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. An experience she says was better than the first. "I was so excited about working with [new director] Francis Lawrence," she said. "It was also nice to go back now that we all know each other. It's like a beautiful reunion this summer and had a great time."
Ray Donovan premieres June 30 on Showtime, while The Hunger Games: Catching Fire hits theaters on November 22, 2013.