The company must be pretty confident of its chances, as according to Deadline Simon Beaufoy, the Oscar winning screenwriter of Slumdog Millionaire and 127 Hours, is the top contender to write the Catching Fire script.
The site also confirms director Gary Ross will return to direct the sequel:
He originally intended to write the outline for the second film and script it with author Suzanne Collins (they teamed to do a lot of writing on the first film), but the post production schedule on The Hunger Games has made that difficult. There is no start date on the sequel, but it is high priority. Negotiations haven’t begun yet, but Lionsgate is pushing hard for Beaufoy.
Below is the synopsis for Catching Fire, which contains potential spoilers so non-book readers beware.
Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark both survived the Hunger Games. Both returned home wanting and expecting a somewhat peaceful future. But the Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge.
When rumors of a rebellion that she started reach Katniss’s ears, everything changes. Now, as Peeta and Katniss are forced to visit the districts on the mandatory Victory Tour, everything can and might go wrong—if Katniss and Peeta cannot pull off their act as two madly-in-love teenagers. If they fail, everything they’ve worked for will be gone.
You can watch the recently released trailer for The Hunger Games, starring Jennifer Lawrence, Liam Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson, below: