Unless you've been hiding under a rock a la Peeta Mellark in the arena for the past few weeks, you probably already know that "The Hunger Games" on DVD is finally dropping this weekend (Aug. 18, to be precise). Needless to say, tributes the world over are now furiously counting down the remaining hours — as Wiress from "Catching Fire" would say, "tick tock, tick tock" — until the games can begin at home.
If you're like us, you'll be hitting the nearest midnight release party (which can be found with this handy dandy locator) and clapping like a Capitol kid just raring to see the show as you grip the plastic-sheathed cover of your very own copy. While there won't be any deleted scenes on the DVD, there will be some new behind-the-scenes goodies and commentary to enjoy within. Not to mention the small fact that you'll be able to watch "The Hunger Games" at home as often as you like.
So, to help make the big occasion even more of a B.F.D. than it already is, we cooked up a checklist of things die-hard "Hunger Games" fans can do to celebrate the long-awaited release throughout the weekend.
Eat Some Themed Food
It goes without saying that an essential part of the story of "The Hunger Games" is food. In Katniss Everdeen's world, some have too little eat (that's most of Panem), while others have much more than they need (the spoiled Capitol citizens). Part of the triumph of winning the 74th Annual Hunger Games is the bountiful array of delicious dishes that are given to victors. Katniss favors the lamb stew, and when we tinkered with "The Unofficial Hunger Games Cookbook," we were fond of the goat cheese smashed potatoes. There are all kinds of food items mentioned in Suzanne Collins' trilogy, though, so this weekend pick a few favorites and make some themed food to really celebrate your "Hunger Games" nerdery.
Throw on Some Costumes
We're not saying you need to invest in a wiry pink wig from the Effie Trinket school of hairstylings (though that would be awesome), but tying a few winks to Panem into your wardrobe this weekend would be a fun way to celebrate the occasion. Ladies, don a wicked braid or slap on some cargo pants; guys, whip out a white apron before grilling out (trust us, it's very manly). Or if you're really brave, dig through your old clothes, pick out your wackiest ensemble, and follow this Capitol make-up tutorial. Whatever you do, wear your "Hunger Games" fandomonium like a badge of honor.
Indulge in The Drinking Games
Okay, so we know we're not the only "Hunger Games" fanatics who are of age, and since Haymitch Abernathy (Woody Harrelson) is something of a lush, it seems fitting to make a game of the first at-home viewing (especially if some friends are involved in the occasion)! First of all, you just gotta have some Capitol-style punch on-hand — blue curacao'll do the trick — but there's no need to be all fancy about it. No muss, no fuss necessary. Then, opt to take a social swig whenever one or all of these things happen: Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) shoots an arrow; Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) looks at Katniss all doe-eyed; someone says, "May the odds be ever in your favor." Feel free to get creative with your own triggers on this one.
Check out the Cast in Other Movies
This weekend, Liam Hemsworth's "The Expendables 2" hits theaters, so if you'd like to see the Hemsworth getting all brawny, check that one out! Also, Woody Harrelson's latest flick "Rampart" (fair warning, very adult material in this one) just hit Netflix, and his awesome "Game Change" is now on HBO On Demand. Plus you can get acquainted with Jena Malone (a.k.a. Johanna Mason) in the recently released to DVD "Hatfields & McCoys" miniseries (brace for major attitude from her character, as usual). And let's not forget Josh Hutcherson, whose "Detention" just hit shelves at the end of July. Perusing some of the cast's other new flicks in between "Hunger Games" DVD viewing sessions is one way to make a whole weekend out of it.
Help Those in Need
If revisiting the impoverished District 12 at home suddenly gets a little too real for your tastes, you could always do something about it this weekend. Drop off some canned food to a local food bank, lend a hand to your local soup kitchen, volunteer for a day at the animal shelter, donate some old clothes... There are tons of ways to turn "The Hunger Games" DVD release weekend into a fun and socially conscious affair.
Got any other ideas to add? How will you be celebrating this weekend? Shoot away in the comments!
Amanda Bell is a young adult book-to-film enthusiast and has made a name for herself as a fan-friendly, informative and dependable source. In addition to being the District 14 columnist for NextMovie, she runs the popular Twilight Examiner column. Keep tabs on her on Twitter.