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Katniss running from a forest fire in the arena of the 74th Hunger Games.

"Fire burns brighter in darkness."
Katniss Everdeen[src]

Fire plays an important role in The Hunger Games trilogy. Katniss Everdeen is referred as "the girl on fire" numerous times throughout the trilogy.

Tributes' fires

When Rue and Katniss decided to destroy the Careers' supplies, they came up with a plan. Rue would start three fires in three different areas to confuse and draw the Careers away to the smoke from their camp so Katniss could try and destroy it.

In the 74th Hunger Games, the District 8 female built a fire at night, a rather foolish move on her part as it was easily seen in the dark, and therefore attracted the remaining Careers and Peeta to her destination where she was killed. Katniss was also in the same place as the District 8 girl when the Careers attacked, so she as well was in danger of being discovered. Later, after the Careers and Peeta had departed the clearing, Katniss took some coals that were still burning from the fire the girl lit and cooks a meal from a rabbit.

Forest fire

When the Gamemakers decided there needed to be more excitement in the 74th Hunger Games, they created a forest fire to drive Katniss away from the edge of the arena and towards the lake, where the Careers were going to be. They first began the forest fire, towering high over the trees much unlike regular fire, compelling the conclusion that this was not a natural fire. Then the Gamemakers began launching fireballs at Katniss. This had a serious effect on Katniss, receiving a burn on her calf and several, less severe others on her hands. The fire also affected the Careers, as they were not as strong as they were before the fire. Katniss states she believes that perhaps Cinna's flaming costumes had brought on this particular torture for the tributes, and makes a remark on how ironic it would be if the 'Girl on Fire' was burnt to death. The forest fire somehow put itself out and later there was no sign of the damage done to the trees such as an entire section of the arena that had burned up and was full of charred trees.

Synthetic fire

Synthetic fire, used as a Capitol fashion statement, was developed by Cinna and Portia, the District 12 stylists, in the 74th and 75th Hunger Games. This feature is what allowed Peeta Mellark and Katniss Everdeen to make a bold fashion statement in the Tribute Parade. The miraculous invention created an identical replica of flames, but also allowed for a safe, burn-free outfit. Both Katniss and Peeta wore synthetic fire, and felt a slight, tickling sensation. Once the parade was over, Portia put out the fire with a spray can. In her interview with Caesar Flickerman, Katniss wears a dress that becomes engulfed in flames as she twirls. This interview is when she is frequently referred to as "the girl on fire".

The toasting

Main article: Toasting

A common wedding tradition in District 12 is the toasting. The newly wed couple builds their first fire and toasts bread with it. The bread is shared afterwards.[1]


In Mockingjay, Beetee and Gale invent weapons that involve fire. Katniss' and Gale's arrows contain fire, explosives, or are normal arrows. Also, the bombs that killed Primrose Everdeen were either fire or explosive, because Katniss later states that she sees the fire engulf her.

The Capitol firebombed District 12 after the 75th Hunger Games, creating a huge firestorm in which nearly the entire population burned to death.


  1. Catching Fire, Chapter 17