For those of you keeping track, we’re now less than two weeks away from the debut of Neil Burger’s adaptation of Veronica Roth’s young adult novel Divergent. The books in the series have been massive sellers, so between that and the fact that the movie is tracking similarly to the first Twilight, I’m going to assume that there’s a fair amount of people with March 21 circled on whatever the teenage equivalent of a calendar is. To mark the occasion, Summit Entertainment has released a ton of new images from the film.
These photos cast a wide net over Divergent. Of course there are some of heroine Beatrice “Tris” Prior (Shailene Woodley) and her studly love interest, Four, played by real-life hunk Theo James. Zoe Kravitz’s Christina, Miles Teller’s Peter, and Maggie Q’s Tori all show up, as do Tris’ parents Andrew (Tony Goldwyn) and Natalie (Ashley Judd). Max (Mekhi Phifer) and Eric (Jai Courtney) are heavily tattooed and stern looking, then again, if you were supposed to play Kyle Reese in the next Terminator movie, you’d be practicing looking grim, too. Villain Jeanine Matthews (Kate Winslet) puts in some face time, as well as Caleb Prior (Ansel Elgort), who must be Tris’ brother, and while I don’t know if he’s a bad guy, he certainly looks like a total dick.
Set in a futuristic Chicago, Divergent depicts a world where society is divided into factions based on your dominant personality trait. Sometimes people show an aptitude with more than one of these classes, and they’re called Divergent. Since they throw the whole, over-simplified system out of whack, the powers that be hunt them down and get rid of them. And wouldn’t you know it, Tris just so happens to be one of these outsiders, so she has to figure out what the hell to do before it’s too late.
I’m curious to see how this adaptation shakes out. Looking at the trailers and clips we’ve seen, you can’t help but think of Divergent as a sort of baby Hunger Games, and it looks to occupy a kind of middle ground between that franchise and the sparkly vampires. You have a fair amount of teen dystopia, which is paired with a hefty dose of angst-ridden young romance. Like I said, the concept seems really dumbed down, but there’s some potential. Given the promotional press behind the film, Summit certainly thinks they have a hot new franchise on their hands, and hope that this will fill the void when Katniss Everdeen and company close up shop in a couple of years.