While it may have been a foregone conclusion that Gary Ross would return to direct, the filmmaker and Lionsgate are currently engaged in 'tough negotiations' for the sequel.
Stars Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, and Liam Hemsworth already have deals in place for the sequel, but the filmmaker did not. Now he is reportedly seeking a huge raise from the $3 million he received to write and direct the first movie. A source close to Lionsgate has revealed that negotiations for Gary Ross to come aboard the original The Hunger Games were, "a terrible experience." However, insiders suggest that the director will eventually return to helm this follow-up.
"Ultimately, it will be difficult, and yet everybody will do the sane thing, which is to work it out. Everybody will end up unhappy in their own way. It's just the nature of the beast."
Lionsgate may face another problem, which could force them to alter Catching Fire's November 15, 2013 release date. It is said that 20th Century Fox may exercise their option on Jennifer Lawrence for the X-Men: First Class Sequel, which would trump Lionsgate's option on the actress.