We’re still more than two weeks away from the March 21 release of Divergent, but if early tracking numbers are any indication, this is going to be a successful endeavor for Summit Entertainment and Lionsgate, at least financially. The outlook is so good, in fact, that some experts predict that the adaptation of Veronica Roth’s best-selling young adult novel could top the $69.6 million that the first Twilight clocked back in November 2008. If you’re film has a chance to pull in box office like that, you’re doing pretty well for yourself.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, Divergent is tracking even better than Twilight in all but one category. The teen-centric dystopia is ahead in “total awareness,” “definite interest,” and “first choice.” Apparently the lone category that it is behind where the sparkly vampires were at this point is in the category called “unaided awareness,” which is supposed to be rather important, but whatever, that’s not bad. And in case you were wondering, no, I don’t know were any of these number come from, or what any of this actually means, aside from the fact that Divergent is going to make a butt-ton of money. It should also be noted that this has generated more interest among teen males and females than the adaptation of Stephanie Meyer’s undead romance. That’s impressive considering that there are still sullen teens camped out in Forks, Washington, hoping to run into a sexy, sensitive bloodsucker.
Set in a totalitarian future Chicago, the story follows the adventures of Beatrice “Tris” Prior (Shailene Woodley), who lives in a world where society is divided based on your dominant personality trait. As it turns out, Tris is what’s called Divergent, which means she doesn’t easily fit in any of their predetermined factions. These folks somehow threaten the established way of life, so the government, let by Kate Winslet, hunt down all these weirdos. Along the way Tris finds a hunky boy, gets a monochrome tattoo, and finds herself in all sorts of sticky situations. It’s all very teen angsty, and I can’t help but think of “We’re Not Gonna Take It” by Twisted Sister when I think of the story.
Summit has been pushing Divergent from the get go, positioning the film to take over when their mega-bucks Hunger Games franchise concludes in the nearish future. While it doesn’t look to be quite the cash-factory the tale of Katniss Everdeen has been—the first film in that series made more than $152 million in March 2012 alone, and the sequel, Catching Fire was the highest-grossing movie of 2013—Divergent looks like a nice consolation prize. If nothing else, it’s light years beyond failed YA attempts like The Host, Beautiful Creatures, and I Am Number Four.
Director Neil Burger (Limitless) won’t be back for the sequel, Insurgent, but work has already begun on the second installment. Divergent also stars Theo James, Ashley Judd, Jai Courtney, Zoe Kravitz, Maggie Q, and Miles Teller.