Entries in The Hunger Games (2)


Body Criticism of "Hunger Games" Actress ‘Toxic,’ Psychologists Say

Kevin Winter/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Psychologists are calling the criticism that Jennifer Lawrence appeared too heavy in The Hunger Games “toxic” and “dangerous” for the film and the book franchise’s many teenage fans.

Multiple media outlets made mention of Lawrence’s figure in their coverage of the box office phenomenon. The New York Times wrote, “A few years ago Ms. Lawrence might have looked hungry enough to play Katniss, but now, at 21, her seductive, womanly figure makes a bad fit for a dystopian fantasy about a people starved into submission.” The Hollywood Reporter cited Lawrence’s “lingering baby fat.”

“These kind of messages are toxic,” Kelly Brownell, a professor of psychology at Yale University, told ABC News. “They pressure people, especially girls, to be at odds with their bodies and to fight against whatever natural weight they might have. They force into the public psyche an arbitrary and unrealistic ideal that is attainable by few and leaves a great many scars in its wake.”

In the film, Lawrence hunts, runs, tackles, climbs and shoots arrows with accuracy that makes Robin Hood look like a hack, all of which demands physical fitness, not a waif-like figure.

“Having a strong woman character is always a positive,” said Carol Bernstein, an associate professor of psychology at New York University, “and it’s unfortunate that the discussion has been sidetracked. It’s very upsetting that the media puts so much focus on these kind of things, which makes young girls who are very susceptible to eating disorders think twice about how they look.”

Lawrence was aware of these issues long before she arrived in Hollywood.

“I remember when I was 13 and it was cool to pretend to have an eating disorder because there were rumors that Lindsay Lohan and Nicole Richie were anorexic,” she said in a recent interview with Seventeen magazine. “I thought it was crazy. I went home and told my mom, ‘Nobody’s eating bread -- I just had to finish everyone’s burgers.’”

She added, “I’m just so sick of these young girls with diets. I think it’s really important for girls to have people to look up to and to feel good about themselves.”

Given her attitude, she might be just what those young girls are looking for.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio 


New York Sports Clubs Launches "Hunger Games"-Inspired Workout

Kevin Winter/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- In the film The Hunger Games, opening Friday, teenagers compete in a violent competition. If that sounds like your idea of a fun time, you may want to investigate a new fitness program launched by New York Sports Clubs.

The company has created a "Train Like a Tribute" workout inspired by The Hunger Games for both members and non-members. For those unfamiliar with the story, Hunger Games competitors are referred to as "tributes."

The workout emphasizes four different skills: archery, tree climbing, speed work and strength training.

Participants will be competing against one another during the workout. Trainer Eric Salvador explains, "Whoever completes the most circuits in the given time actually wins the 'Train Like a Tribute' Hunger Games workout.

The workout was launched by New York Sports Clubs this week in New York, Boston, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. More information is available at

The workout is just another example of the growing frenzy surrounding The Hunger Games. According to, online ticket sellers Fandango and have already sold a combined total of more than one million tickets for the film.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio