2014 was a big year for Shailene Woodley, as it was within a few months of each other, she starred in two major book-to movie-adaptations, Divergent and The Fault In Our Stars. She proved she’s a true movie star and she was set to bring the role of Tris to life in three more movies in the Divergent series based on author Veronica Roth’s books: Insurgent, Allegiant, and Ascendant. The first three films came out, but then, there was nothing after that. Ascendant was suddenly scrapped it seemed and as fans of the book series know, the way the final book ends is much different than how Allegiant the movie ends. So what really happened?
Allegiant was considered a box-office fail.
Unfortunately, things came down to money. When Allegiant hit theaters in March 2016, it grossed significantly less than the other films in the franchise and although the finale was to be split into two movies, the first half didn’t do as well as Lionsgate, the studio behind the movies, had hoped. There was talk that a budget for AScendant was going to be significantly less than it was for the other movies, and a script was being worked on, with a release date of June 2017. But that never happened.
Then came the TV movie/series idea.
After word started to spread that a theatrical release of the final movie wasn’t going to become a reality, news broke that instead, Allegiant would be a TV movie with hopes of a spinoff series. Apparently, the plan was to was to end the current characters’ storylines and introduce a new cast who would then be the main stars of the spinoff show. It was unclear if any of the main cast would want to do a TV movie instead of a major theatrical release and as more time went by, it seemed like this might not ever come true.
Shailene says she’s done playing Tris.
It seemed like this plan to make Allegiant a TV movie was legit, but would the main cast be on board? There can’t be another Divergent Series movie without Tris, so when Shailene made it clear she had no plans to be in this TV version, fans were left shook.
“No, I’m not going to be on the television show,” the now 27-year-old actress told Vanity Fair at the premiere of her new HBO series, Big Little Lies in early 2017. And she’s not the only star who wasn’t about this move to television. Miles Teller, who also co-starred with Shai in The Spectacular Now, made it clear, he wasn’t going to reprise his role as Peter in this movie either.
“No, I’m not doing that. Just that’s not happening for me,” he said in an interview.
So with the main cast wanting no part of this TV movie, talk of it actually coming to be lessened. In early 2018, Shailene even admitted that working on Allegiant was difficult and caused her to take a break from acting for a while.
“The last [Divergent movie] was a bit of a hard experience for everyone and that was really what made me think I need to have some human experiences outside of this industry and fall in love with acting again, and Big Little Lies did that for me,” she said.
So there we have it: the last Divergent Series movie, Ascendant, never got its shot to come true and at this point, it most likely never will. Sigh.
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