Francis Lawrence says that once they figured out what the music would sound like, they went to Nashville bass producer and songwriter Dave Cobb for his expertise. He ended up writing music to match the lyrics Suzanne Collins wrote in the book. Once everything was ready, they recorded the instruments with the band and then brought in Rachel Zegler to add vocals. “But her recordings were more like a rehearsal where she was sure to delve deeper into the sound and the genre and things like that,” Lawrence says. “So she can do some work with Dave.” In any other movie it would have ended this way, but that wasn’t the case with “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes.”
“She really seamlessly fit into the style we needed,” Lawrence continued. “And then she got to sing live on set every day, so that was amazing too.” Confirms that there was no lip-syncing or anything like that. “Whether he’s on the mic or singing acapella, it’s all live.” Zegler has always been a theater child and sang throughout her young life. Her cover of “Shallow” from “A Star Is Born” went viral on Twitter after it was announced that she would star in Steven Spielberg’s “West Side Story,” proof that the girl has pipes. That’s the secret to recording live musical versions on a film set – casting someone who can bring the house down.
“The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” is now in cinemas.