When Olivia Rodrigo was approached to write a song for “The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes,” she didn’t hesitate. “When they asked me if I was interested in writing for this, I was like, ‘Oh, of course! I’m such a fan of everything ‘Hunger Games.’”
Speaking to Variety at the Los Angeles premiere of the long-awaited prequel film, Rodrigo revealed that she started the writing process for “Can’t Catch Me Now” from scratch after watching the movie and collecting her thoughts.
“One of the last scenes was very inspiring to me. I don’t know how to describe it without giving too much away! It’s an overhead shot of a bunch of birds in the trees, and something very important just happened,” Rodrigo said. “That was playing in a loop in my head over and over, and I was like, ‘I want to write a song that captures what that feeling is.’ That was the goal.”
Rodrigo was all smiles on the red carpet, just days after earning six Grammy nominations for her sophomore album “Guts.” “It’s so surreal. I mean, I just try to write the music of my heart and try to make songs that I would like to hear,” she said. “To be recognized in such an incredible way by the music community is just icing on the cake. It’s just really incredible. And I’m very grateful.”
Josh Andrés Rivera, Tom Bluth, Rachel Zegler, Hunter Schafer, Jason Schwartzman and Olivia Rodrigo at the premiere of “The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes” held at TCL Chinese Theatre on November 13, 2023 in Los Angeles, California.
Rodrigo also shared that Rachel Zegler’s fierce District 12 tribute Lucy Gray Baird inspired her track for the film. Zegler, the titular songbird, recalled her first day on set in Lucy Gray’s ruffled rainbow dress. “It was really, really exciting. But also terrifying, because I realized I had to do all my stunts in heels!”
Zegler wasn’t deterred by that extra challenge. In fact, she was emboldened by it. “Oddly enough, it was a fun experience,” she said. “It was mostly just knowing the filmmakers had such trust in me that, even though I wasn’t there for a lot of the choreography, they still trusted me that I would be able to bring it on the day. I hopefully did just that, and I can’t wait for the general public to be the judge.”