March 21, 2014
In a futuristic Chicago, people are divided into five distinct factions based on their personalities. Beatrice "Tris" Prior discovers that she is Divergent, meaning she does not fit into any one faction, and soon uncovers a sinister plot brewing in her seemingly perfect society.
- Ansel Elgort as Caleb Prior
- Ray Stevenson as Marcus Eaton
- Kate Winslet as Jeanine Matthews
- Zoë Kravitz as Christina
- Maggie Q as Tori
- Jai Courtney as Eric
- Miles Teller as Peter
- Ben Lamb as Edward
- Mekhi Phifer as Max
- Ben Lloyd-Hughes as Will
- Christian Madsen as Al
- Tony Goldwyn as Andrew Prior
- Ashley Judd as Natalie Prior
- Amy Newbold as Molly Atwood
- Justine Wachsberger as Lauren
- Main article: Divergent: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
In March 2011, Summit Entertainment picked up the rights from for Divergent with Douglas Wick and Lucy Fisher's production company Red Wagon Entertainment. Neil Burger was announced as the director on August 23, 2012. Evan Daugherty, who co-wrote the screenplay with Vanessa Taylor, said, "I get hung up on the toughness of the movie but of equal importance is the love story between Tris and Four. It's inherently and inextricably linked to Tris' character journey. There will be plenty of sexual tension and chemistry, but it's important that all of that stuff doesn't just feel like it's thrown in, but that it all helps Tris grow as a character." Daugherty further added, "It's tricky because the book is a very packed read with a lot of big ideas. So, distilling that into a cool, faithful two-hour movie is challenging. Not only do you have to establish five factions, but you have to acknowledge that there's a sixth entity, which is the divergent, and you also have the factionless. So there's a world that really has to be built out for the big screen… the movie is going to do it a little more efficiently." Author Veronica Roth said about the script of the film: "Reading a script is a really interesting experience. I'd never read a script before. I was really impressed by how closely it stuck to the general plot line of the book."
Initially budget of the film was $40 million but later Lionsgate increased it to $80 million due to the success of The Hunger Games. Analyst Ben Mogil said, "Divergent is more similar to Hunger Games in that the company owns the underlying economics (i.e. production) and the budget (at $80mn) is more manageable."
On October 22, 2012 it was announced that Shailene Woodley had landed the lead role of Tris Prior. Lucas Till, Jack Reynor, Jeremy Irvine, Alex Pettyfer, Brenton Thwaites, Alexander Ludwig and Luke Bracey were all considered for the role of Tobias "Four" Eaton. On March 15, 2013, it was announced that Theo James had been cast as Four.
Though James was 10 years older than the character when cast, Roth praised his casting "I was sure within seconds: this was 'Four', no question. Theo is able to capture 'Four's' authority and strength, as well as his depth and sensitivity." She also mentions the chemistry between him and Shailene: "He is a perfect match for Shailene's incredibly strong presence as Tris. I'm thrilled!" The producers said about his casting: "We took our time to find the right actor to fill the role of Four, and Theo is definitely the perfect fit. Veronica has crafted a truly iconic character in Four and we cannot wait to begin production and bring him and this story to life for millions of fans around the world."
Ray Stevenson, Jai Courtney, and Aaron Eckhart were announced to be in talks to join the cast on March 15, 2013, Stevenson and Courtney joined the cast as Marcus Eaton and Eric, respectively. Kate Winslet was announced to be in talks on January 24, 2013. Later it was confirmed that she would portray Jeanine Matthews. Talking about playing the negative character for the first time, Winslet said, "I'm no idiot. The idea went through my head that I have never played a baddie before, I was almost kind of surprised." Since Winslet joined the filming late, she used that distance from her co-stars to appear aloof on the first day of her shoot. "I wanted to break it and say, 'It's OK, I'm really fun. I promise.' But I thought, just for today, I'd let them think that I am a complete bitch."
Filming began in Chicago in April 2013 and concluded on July 16, 2013. Virtually all production photography took place in Chicago; many of the interior locations were filmed at Cinespace Chicago Film Studios. Scenes for the "choosing ceremony" were shot at 17th Church of Christ, Scientist, Chicago on East Wacker in downtown Chicago. Filming also took place at the Navy Pier Ferris Wheel; the entire area was treated with dirt and rust to appear more dystopian. Additional scenes were shot at 57th Street and Ellis Avenue near University of Chicago, at Federal Street where fake EL tracks were constructed and at Michigan Avenue.
For the Abnegation sector, the production team constructed the set on Wells Street in downtown Chicago. In late June, filming took place at 1500 S Western Avenue and 600 S. Wells Street, Chicago. In the last schedule, filming moved to the Chicago River and continued at Lake Street Bridge, Wacker Drive and LaSalle Street Bridge. Filming wrapped on July 16, 2013, however on January 24, 2014 what is believed to be additional scenes will shoot in Los Angeles, finishing on January 26, 2014 which will be officially the last day of shooting.
Post-production work began after filming wrapped. On July 18, Summit and Lionsgate issued a joint statement announcing the film will be released in IMAX format: "We're delighted to continue our successful collaboration with IMAX, with whom we have already partnered on the global blockbuster Hunger Games and Twilight Saga franchises, and we're especially pleased that we can introduce our newest young adult franchise, Divergent, to the movie going public in the premium IMAX format that celebrates its status as a special and memorable event."
The first image of Shailene Woodley as Tris Prior was revealed by Entertainment Weekly on April 24, 2013. A few seconds sneak preview footage of the film was shown at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival. On June 7, Entertainment Weekly released a still of Theo James (Four) showing the Dauntless initiates around their new headquarters. The magazine released several more stills on July 19. On July 16, USA Today released the first image of Kate Winslet as Jeanine Matthews.
On July 18, 2013 Summit held a sold-out San Diego Comic-Con panel in Hall H. Shailene Woodley, Theo James, Maggie Q, Zoe Kravitz, Ansel Elgort, Ben Lloyd-Hughes, Amy Newbold, Miles Teller, Christian Madsen, director Neil Burger, and author Veronica Roth attended the panel and answered fan questions along with showing them exclusive film clips.
On August 22, 2013 a sneak peek of the first teaser trailer was released by MTV. The full teaser was released on August 25, 2013 during the pre-show of the MTV Video Music Awards. Two official posters featuring Woodley and James as Tris and Four and highlighting their tattoos were released on September 23, 2013. Neil Burger released the full official trailer on November 13, 2013. On February 4, 2014 Shailene Woodley and Theo James released the final trailer for the film, during their appearance for film's promotion at Jimmy Kimmel Live!.
On May 7, 2013, Summit Entertainment revealed that a sequel, based on Insurgent, is already in the works. Brian Duffield, writer of Jane Got a Gun, has been hired to write the script. The sequel is scheduled to be released on March 20, 2015. The third film, based on Allegiant, is scheduled for March 18, 2016, and currently, it will not be split into two films. Neil Burger will not return for the sequels.
Divergent Movie Team
- Director - Neil Burger
- Movie Rights - Summit Entertainment, Lionsgate
- Screenplay - Evan Daughtery
- Producers - Doug Wick and Lucy Fisher (from The Great Gatsby & Red Wagon), Pouya Shabazian (from Fine Print) along with Erik Feig, Gillian Bohrer and Jeyun Choi (from Summit.)
The image gallery for Divergent (film) may be viewed here.