That doesn't mean they're going to get him, however. After a long run playing Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman on Broadway for director Mike Nichols, Hoffman is leaving his talent agency after 18 years. In a brief update on the actor going agentless, Mike Fleming at Deadline mentions in passing that Hoffman has been offered the Catching Fire part.
Philip Seymour Hoffman is known for his Oscar-winning performance in Capote, as well as great, nuanced work in films such as The 25th Hour, Happiness, Moneyball, The Big Lebowski, Doubt, and Almost Famous. He'll next be seen in Paul Thomas Anderson's The Master, once again working with the writer-director after nailing it in Boogie Nights, Magnolia, and Punch Drunk Love. Lest you think that Hoffman won't accept the Plutarch role because he's a super-serious actor who doesn't do big, commercial work, keep in mind that he played the bad guy in Mission: Impossible III.
Apparently Plutarch is a fairly minor character in the first sequel novel by Suzanne Collins, but his importance grows in the final installment. In Catching Fire, he's the gamemaker who takes the place of Seneca Crane, played by Wes Bentley in the first film. Since an actor of Hoffman's caliber is being sought, it's likely that his role in Catching Fire has been expanded upon at least a little bit.
The film already has a formidable cast of returning players. Central trio Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, and Liam Hemsworth are all coming back, along with supporting players Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Lenny Kravitz, Donald Sutherland, and Stanley Tucci.
With The Hunger Games having grossed over $400 million domestically, Lionsgate is eager to keep the franchise up and running. Though fans had long assumed he'd be back for a sequel, director Gary Ross decided not to return, and the studio hired Francis Lawrence to take his place. The I Am Legend director will be working from a screenplay by Slumdog Millionaire writer Simon Beaufoy and Michael Arndt, whose credits include Little Miss Sunshine and Toy Story 3.
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire has long been scheduled for release on November 22, 2013.
Because it's worth it, here's a clip of Hoffman as a scumbag in Punch Drunk Love: