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Stevie Ray Dallimore listens as people read lines of a play Monday at the Chattanooga Public Library.

IF YOU GO

What: The Muse Of Fire Project presents 10 new plays.

When: 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 5; 3 and 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 6

Where: Downtown Public Library, 1001 Broad St.

Admission: $10 suggested

Website: themuseoffireproject.org

The 120 or so people who will watch a special screening of "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1" today will no doubt be watching to see the work of stars Jennifer Lawrence, Liam Hemsworth and the late Philip Seymour Hoffman, but they'll also be keeping eyes peeled for a local actor as well.

McCallie School Director of Drama Stevie Ray Dallimore has a small part in the movie, which opened Friday. He plays "District 13 Systems Operator #2," and spent about three weeks off and on between November 2012 and January 2013 in Atlanta, filming his parts. He will play the same role in "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 2," due in theaters in November 2015.

"I was in the inner sanctum with all of the stars [in the film]," he says. "And I did have lines. A few lines."

Dallimore, 47, got permission from the filmmakers for the special screening today, which is an invitation-only fundraiser for The Muse of Fire Project, which he and his wife and fellow actor, Kate Forbes Dallimore, created about four years ago to encourage young playwrights. In the project, budding writers create 10-minute plays which are then produced by adult actors during an evening of 10 plays.

The next Muse event is scheduled for Dec. 5 and 6. Plays by students from area schools will be presented.

"We have kids from Calvin Donaldson, Brown, Battle, East Lake, Lookout Mountain, Signal Mountain and all over," Dallimore says.

The plays themselves "are really out there and creative with kid-like imaginings," he says. "We've got one with a stone golem. We have a dragon, a zombie and a spider queen. We have some with normal kids, and we even have one with a loaf of bread as a character."

There is a regular cast of adults who do the directing, acting, music and costuming for the plays. "I'll probably direct two and act in two," Dallimore says.

About two weeks is spent in rehearsal, preparing to perform the plays. They are presented with the writer sitting at a desk, watching his or her work come to life.

"We treat them very seriously," Dallimore says. "It's like an off-Broadway show meets 'The Muppet Movie' meets 'Saturday Night Live.' It's like the funnest thing an actor can do."

Dallimore got the idea for the Muse Project while working in New York, where there was a similar program called 52nd Street Project.

Besides "Mockingjay," his film credits include "Need for Speed," "Far from Heaven" and "Ender's Game."

"Mockingjay" is the third in "The Hunger Games" trilogy written by Suzanne Collins. They are set in a country called "Panem," which consists of a wealthy capitol and 13 districts, although District 13 reportedly was destroyed during an attempted revolution against the oppressive government. Each year, adolescents and teenagers are chosen from the 12 remaining districts to compete in a televised death match called The Hunger Games.

In "Mockingjay," rebels have taken heroine Katniss Everdeen, winner of the Hunger Games, to District 13 -- which is not uninhabitable, although the government has said it is. From there, they launch a revolution.

Contact Barry Courter at bcourter@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6354.

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