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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A sold-out prescreening in Louisville of the film "Hunger Games: Catching Fire" - serves a dual purpose.
It stars Louisville's own Jennifer Lawrence and brings her performance first to a hometown audience. It also raises money for the St. Mary's Center, a facility which helps mentally challenged adults.
Tinseltown theatres in Springhurst had its own red carpet for guests before the evening screening. It was held simultaneously with a premiere in New York. Jennifer Lawrence was out west, but her family members represented her locally.
WDRB's Bennett Haeberle took viewers to the red carpet ceremonies before and after the movie. He reported the event garnered $40,000 for the St. Mary's Center. Jennifer Lawrence's family and "Hunger Games" fans had a great night.
"It was so awesome. Oh, my gosh, it is too much for me to handle," said one movie fan. "I love 'The Hunger Games' so much."
The special screening helps mentally challenged adults like Andy. He has Down Syndrome and is a childhood friend of Jennifer Lawrence.
"I think that is the most important thing about tonight, is (that) people get to see a good movie, but we are also raising money for a good cause."
"I know that means so much. All these people have come out and supporting the movie... and she is just delighted that it is a success," said Jennifer Lawrence's mother, Karen Lawrence.
Karen Lawrence said Jennifer's Oscar-winning success has changed the family dynamic.
"Jen is still the same, and I guess that's why it is harder for me to see her at Katniss, as her character, but it's just part of her job, and she is still the same person," Karen Lawrence said.
Her mother said Jennifer wished she could have attended tonight's event, but she had another obligation in New York that she attended with her brother Ben. Jennifer Lawrence paid the costs for Wednesday's Louisville event, so proceeds were a total profit for the St. Mary's center.
WDRB's Elizabeth Woolsey interviewed Jennifer Lawrence about the movie earlier this month. You will see her story on WDRB News Thursday at 4 and 10 p.m.