In the wake of the ludicrous success of franchises like Twilight, Harry Potter, and The Hunger Games, every studio is looking for the next big young adult series of novels that they can stretch out into like a dozen movies. Following that logic, Summit Entertainment, a subsidiary of Lionsgate, has begun production on an adaptation of Veronica Roth’s wildly successful YA novel, Divergent.
Divergent has put together an impressive cast so far. Shailene Woodley (The Descendants), Theo James (Underworld Awakening), and Kate Winslet will be surrounded by the likes of Maggie Q. (Nikita), Jai Courtney (A Good Day to Die Hard), Zoe Kravitz (X-Men: First Class), Miles Teller (Project X), Ansel Elgort (the upcoming Carrie remake), Ben Lloyd-Hughes (Great Expectations), Ben Lamb, Christian Madsen, and Amy Newbold. As if that isn’t enough, it was just announced that Ray Stevenson (Thor) and Mekhi Phifer (Torchwood: Miracle Day) have been added to round out the collection.
Set in the future, Divergent tells the story of a world where personalities are used to segregate people into distinct groups. These factions include Abnegation (the selfless), Amity (the peaceful), Candor (the honest), Dauntless (the brave), and Erudite (the intelligent). When you don’t fit anywhere, you’re classified as Divergent and shunned for being freaky and weird.
When Tris Prior (Woodley) falls into this last category, she uncovers a far-reaching plot to rid the world of Divergents. What makes the Divergents such a hazard? Bet it has something to do with being free thinkers who aren’t easily controlled. The story promises lots of action, adventure, and intrigue.
Divergent is Roth’s first book, which she completed as an undergrad, though she has since published the sequel, Insurgent. Both have taken up long-time residences on the New York Times best-seller list. Book three is due later this year.
Neil Burger (Limitless) is directing Divergent, which is due in theaters March 21, 2014.