Buyers clamor for ‘Hunger Games’

Trilogy to be based on Suzanne Collins youth tome

“Hunger Games” has yet to be cast, but interest in the futuristic actioner is already high both in the U.S. and overseas, where Warner Bros. has picked up Spanish and Italian rights to Gary Ross’ adaptation of Suzanne Collins’ young-adult tome.

Lionsgate unveiled the project to buyers at AFM in November after acquiring feature rights in 2009 and developing the project with Nina Jacobson at her Color Force banner. Collins is adapting her own book, the first in the trilogy.

Story takes place in a society in which districts pay tribute by each choosing a teen boy and girl who must fight to the death on live TV.

Lionsgate will release the pic in the U.S. and Blighty, and has set a March 23, 2012 release date.