Los Angeles - The Hunger Games may be about kids who are forced to fight to the death on live TV, but one of its stars, Liam Hemsworth, said the violence in the film isn't for nothing.
"None of it is glorified and it's not about that," said the 22-year-old Australian.
"It's about kids in a horrible situation, and there's this girl who overcomes it and gives hope to everyone and they come together to do something about it," he said.
Best-selling book trilogy
In the movie, which opens in the US on Friday (April 13 in South Africa), Hemsworth plays Gale Hawthorne, the best friend of Katniss Everdeen, portrayed by Jennifer Lawrence.
His role in the first Hunger Games story is a small one but is more prevalent in the two stories that follow. They're based on a best-selling book trilogy by Suzanne Collins.
Hemsworth doesn't have any fight scenes in the first film but did have to lose "quite a bit of weight" to play a teen living in a poor area who hunts to help feed his family.
The Hunger Games also stars Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Lenny Kravitz and Donald Sutherland.