David O. Russell Apologizes For Calling Jennifer Lawrence A 'Slave' To 'Hunger Games'

Director David O. Russell probably knew that when he said Jennifer Lawrence is a "slave" to the Hunger Games franchise, the comment would land him in hot water.

The always "colorful" American Hustle director -- who starred Jennifer Lawrence in one of the main roles -- was talking about the toll the demanding franchise is taking on the 23-year-old superstar.

David O. Russell was trying to say Jennifer Lawrence playing Katniss for The Hunger Games could be affecting her personal health.

However, it didn't sound good. Moreover, the director seemed to be making a reference to the Golden Globe winner 12 Years A Slave, which added to his poor choice of words.

While promoting his film American Hustle David O. Russell recalled his controversial comments about Hunger Games and expressed his concern at the length of time it takes to film just one of the installments and the potential negative effects on one of his favorite stars, Jennifer Lawrence.

Russell told Confidenti@l at Australian Academy's AACTA Awards on Friday:

"I'll tell you what it is about that girl — talk about 12 years of slavery, that's what the franchise is. And I'm going to get in so much trouble for saying that."

And he did. The comments have stirred controversy on social media, with some wondering what David O. Russell was thinking when he decided to use the analogy.

Russell added:

"I personally think they should give her a bit of breathing room over there because they're printing money. But she's a very alive person."

Jennifer Lawrence is paid very well for what she does for Hunger Games, however, she has also had some health issues because of the demanding schedule.

Some believe David O. Russell was referring to Jennifer Lawrence's pneumonia during last year awards season, which could have been brought on by the intense filming schedule she endured for The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.

Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss

J-Law also had to miss one of the American Hustle premieres recently because of a "weather issue".

As The Inquisitr reported last month that Lawrence suffered a scary accident while filming Mockingjay when a fog machine malfunctioned making her disappear from sight.

David O. Russell has since apologized for his ill-advised slavery comment.

"Clearly, I used a stupid analogy in a poor attempt at humor," Russell said in a statement to Yahoo Movies. "I realized it the minute I said it and I am truly sorry."

David O. Russell has been known to have a short fuse throwing major temper tantrums in the past. Perhaps the most famous one happened on the set of I Heart Huckabee in 2004, when he had a much talked about exchange with Lilly Tomlin.

David O. Russell won three Golden Globes for American Hustle last Sunday, Best Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical; Best Actress in a Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical (Amy Adams); and Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture (Jennifer Lawrence). Oscar nominations will be announced on Thursday.