Posted on Thursday, August 23rd, 2012 by Angie Han
As Summit prepares to say goodbye to its phenomenally popular Twilight franchise, the search is on for another YA adaptation to follow in its lucrative footsteps. One especially promising property is Divergent, a bestselling dystopian teen novel penned by Veronica Roth. Summit picked up the movie rights before the book even hit shelves, and is now eager to push the project into production.
To that end, they’ve just started early talks with Limitless director Neil Burger. Burger reportedly got the offer after beating out several other big-name filmmakers. More details after the jump.
Divergent bears a superficial resemblance to Lionsgate’s The Hunger Games series (which itself has been touted as the next Twilight) thanks to its dystopian setting and depictions of teen violence. The story centers around Tris, who lives in a futuristic society where citizens are divided into five factions. Each section aligns with a particular virtue, such as honesty, intelligence, peacefulness, bravery, or selflessness. At age 16, Tris must choose which one to devote the rest of her life to.
The first of a planned trilogy, Divergent has sold over 1.3 million copies to date. Its sequel, Insurgent, was published in May, and the third and final novel is due out in fall 2013. Variety reports that Summit’s hope is to have Divergent in production by March for a spring 2014 release, which means we can expect to hear a lot of buzz in the coming months about casting and whatnot. As of this summer, Snow White and the Huntsman writer Evan Daugherty was working on the script.
Burger is in high demand right now after the success of last year’s Limitless, which raked in $161 million worldwide on a $27 million budget. He’s been attached to a number of other juicy projects since then, including Sony’s video game adaptation Uncharted, the Sheldon Turner-scripted Bonnie and Clyde picture, and the Dennis Lehane adaptation Animal Rescue. His other previous credits include The Lucky Ones and The Illusionist.
Here’s the Amazon.com synopsis of Roth’s tome:
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In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can’t have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.
During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles to determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes infuriating boy fits into the life she’s chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she’s kept hidden from everyone because she’s been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . . or it might destroy her.
Debut author Veronica Roth bursts onto the literary scene with the first book in the Divergent series—dystopian thrillers filled with electrifying decisions, heartbreaking betrayals, stunning consequences, and unexpected romance.