Gary Ross’ upcoming adaptation of the first novel in Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games trilogy is naturally one of the several highly anticipated films due out next year, and we were treated to an absolutely brilliant first trailer for the film ten days ago.

Judging by the trailer, we’re in for the start of a pretty immense ride next year, with there already being talk, somewhat expectedly, of a sequel getting the go-ahead, with Simon Beaufoy being targeted for penning the script.

We’ve now got a great new image from the film, courtesy of People, that gives us a look at Elizabeth Banks, starring as Effie Trinket, standing alongside Jennifer Lawrence’s Katniss Everdeen. As we saw in the trailer, Banks looks almost entirely unrecognisable with all of her make-up and clothing on, and you can barely tell that it’s her in this new image, which is a real testament to the film’s make-up department.

“Every year in the ruins of what was once North America, the evil Capitol of the nation of Panem forces each of its twelve districts to send a teenage boy and girl to compete in the Hunger Games. A twisted punishment for a past uprising and an ongoing government intimidation tactic, The Hunger Games are a nationally televised event in which “Tributes” must fight with one another until one survivor remains. Pitted against highly-trained Tributes who have prepared for these Games their entire lives, Katniss is forced to rely upon her sharp instincts as well as the mentorship of drunken former victor Haymitch Abernathy. If she’s ever to return home to District 12, Katniss must make impossible choices in the arena that weigh survival against humanity and life against love. THE HUNGER GAMES is directed by Gary Ross, and produced by Nina Jacobson’s Color Force in tandem with producer Jon Kilik. Suzanne Collins’ best-selling novel, the first in a trilogy published by Scholastic that has over 16 million copies in print in the United States alone, has developed a massive global following.”

Along with Lawrence and Banks, the film has a great supporting cast that includes the likes of Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Stanley Tucci, Donald Sutherland, and Wes Bentley, the last of whom was sporting by far the coolest beard I’ve ever seen in the trailer.

The Hunger Games is already being pushed as the next franchise to fill the gap left by Harry Potter and the gap that will be left by the conclusion of The Twilight Saga next year, and with its 23rd March release date just a few months away, we’ve not got that long before we get an idea of how true that really is. I definitely wouldn’t be surprised if it’s spot on. Without further ado, here’s the new image of Banks and Lawrence from the film, both looking pretty brilliant in character. You can also catch up on all our other coverage for the film right here.