ABOVE: Watch Josh Hutcherson on the red carpet at the Toronto International Film Festival.
TORONTO — Actor Josh Hutcherson said Thursday he is disgusted by the publication online of hundreds of intimate photos of female celebrities — including his Hunger Games co-star Jennifer Lawrence.
“These are crimes,” he said of the massive hack. “These are absolutely crimes against human rights.”
The 21-year-old star told Maurie Sherman of the Roz and Mocha Show on KiSS 92.5 in Toronto that the spread of the hacked images says something about society as a whole.
“The fact that people react the way they do and look at that,” said Hutcherson, who was allegedly the victim of a privacy violation last year when a nude “selfie” he sent to someone was posted online.
“It’s so unbelievably embarrassing to have somebody look into your private life,” he said. “It’s really disheartening to see that this is where the world of entertainment has gone and it’s gone that way because of greed and media and people feeling like they deserve something and have a right to something that they absolutely do not.”
Hutcherson said he hasn’t spoken to Lawrence since her explicit photos were posted online.
“Everybody deals with those sort of situations on their own, in their own ways,” he said.
Hutcherson said celebrities should have the same right to privacy as everyone else.
“None of us signed up for our private lives to be made public,” he said. “I started acted when I was nine years old, Jen started when she was 12. You don’t have this idea of celebrity at that age. You have the idea of wanting to make movies and have a passion for storytelling. It’s what we’re good at. It’s what we do. It’s not like we just made this choice and decided ‘Oh yeah, I want to be an actor because I want to make movies but also there’s a fame element…’ No, we didn’t think like that. At least I didn’t and I know Jen didn’t.”
Hutcherson went on to slam the paparazzi.
“The whole thing about we’re allowed to be followed by paparazzi and be stalked only because we’re in the public eye is such bullshit,” he said. “The laws only protect paparazzi — they don’t protect the actors or celebrities or anything.
“They were designed to keep track of politicians to make sure the government wasn’t doing shady things, not to follow an actress and terrify her and make her feel paranoid and make her check her mirror every second to see if someone’s following her or to know if someone is hacking their computer to steal their personal information.”
Hutcherson plays Peeta Mellark in the wildly successful Hunger Games movies, which are based on the books by Suzanne Collins.
The actor said he recently saw the finished The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1, which is set for release in November (“I loved it. I’m so proud of it”). Part 2 is due out in November 2015.
“I’m so glad that they split it into two movies because there’s so much that happens in that third book that if you tried to squeeze it into one two hour movie you would have lost so much,” he told KiSS 92.5.
Hutcherson insisted fans will be thrilled by Mockingjay.
“It’s really dark, it’s really intense and the way you see how these characters try to recover and then build up a counterstrike against what they’ve experienced is really intense,” he said. “You’re absolutely going to love it.”
The star said it was hard to wrap production and walk away from cast and crew who worked together for a big part of the past four years.
“We’ve gone through some big changes together, just personally and professionally, that it’s hard to know that you’re not going to be 12 hours every day for months at a time with them,” said Hutcherson. “We’re still close, we’re still friends, we talk all the time — but it’s not the same so I’m definitely going to miss it.”
Did Hutcherson take a souvenir from District 12?
“I actually took the pendant that I gave Katniss — the one that opens and has the picture of her family, from that scene on the beach. I took that. It’s my one memento,” he confessed.
“It’s in my house in my desk drawer. I’m going to try to purposefully lose it — but in a way that I know I will find it in the future.”