Rachel Zegler opened up about having her boyfriend Josh Andrés Rivera play double duty as her costar on Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes.
The stunning star, 22, finds it a positive to have her real-life beau, 28, on set working alongside her, as the couple – who also acted together on West Side Story – are busy promoting their collaboration for the latest installment of the sci-fi franchise.
‘Having a familiar face on any set, I think any young actor can attest, is the biggest form of comfort,’ the actress told People on Tuesday.
Zeglar is starring in The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes as District 12 tribute Lucy Gray Baird, while Rivera secured the role of a Hunger Games mentor named Sejanus Plinth. They confirmed their romance on Valentine’s Day last year.
‘And also as [Rivera’s] girlfriend, his friend, and his coworker, it’s amazing to see the trajectory of his career, and to witness his rise to stardom. I love him so much,’ she added.
Big plus: Rachel Zegler opened up about having her boyfriend Josh Andrés Rivera play double duty as her costar on Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes; seen in November (pictured last week)
‘I feel really lucky,’ Josh chimed in. ‘It was a really great source of comfort for me to have her with me so far away from home.
‘We were in a different country. We got to explore that country together. It was absolutely lovely. I feel very fortunate.’
Set in a bleak dystopian future, director Francis Lawrence’s socially-conscious science fiction fantasy is set some 64-years before the events that take place in the much-loved franchise’s first film – 2012 blockbuster The Hunger Games.
With a star-studded cast featuring Tom Blyth, Peter Dinklage, Hunter Schafer, Jason Schwartzman, and Viola Davis, The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes, Rachel and Josh are in good company.
Shazam! star Rachel appears as Lucy Gray Baird, who has a key role in the 10th Hunger Games.
Fans have also speculated about her connection to The Hunger Games protagonist Katniss Everdeen – famously played by Jennifer Lawrence from 2012 to 2015.
Josh plays Sejanus Plinth, mentor of the male tribute of District 2.
‘Never been prouder of someone in my life lemme tell you,’ Zegler, 21, wrote on her Instagram Story over the summer when she shared the news of her boyfriend being hired for the prequel.
TRue romance: ‘Having a familiar face on any set, I think any young actor can attest, is the biggest form of comfort,’ Rachel said on Tuesday
Gushing: ‘And also as [Rivera’s] girlfriend, his friend, and his coworker, it’s amazing to see the trajectory of his career, and to witness his rise to stardom. I love him so much,’ she added
Costars: Rachel and Josh acted together on West Side Story
The up-and-coming actors appeared to make their romance Instagram official on Valentine’s Day last year when Zegler shared a black-and-white selfie photo of the couple on Instagram.
‘Committing valen-crimes,’ captioned Zegler, who went on to post video that showed Rivera feeding her during a romantic dinner: ‘Happy love day from me n mine.’
Zegler wished her man a happy birthday in May by gushing about him in the caption of a video that showed them staring into each other’s eyes.
‘You are everything I love about this world wrapped into one incredible man. Happy birthday, Joshua. In this life, I like just doing laundry and taxes with you.’
The Hunger Games four-film franchise, starring Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson as Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark, respectively, was a juggernaut at the box office, grossing more than $3 billion to date.
The much-anticipated prequel is scheduled to premiere in theaters on November 17, 2023.