The massively anticipated franchised debut of Divergent, opening with an astonishing $4.9 million at midnight screenings, is setting a playing field to dwarf previous box office predictions.
Last week, critics and reporters were predicting the opening US domestic gross of divergent around $60 million dollars, surpassing that of Twilight’s 2008 debut. However, the picture is hyped to possibly pass the $100 million barrier. As almost the entirety of the book franchises previous fans are expected to be making their way to screenings this weekend, along with an overwhelming fan turnout at the film’s World premiere, for its onscreen reincarnation. The opening theatrical weekend is practically sold out at every theater across the country.
The CEO of Lionsgate, Jon Feltheimer commented on the multi million dollar kickstart saying “We’re off to a great start with strong numbers from all regions of the country, urban, suburban and rural alike, We’re confident that Divergent is on its way to becoming another important franchise for us, and we have just greenlighted the second film, Insurgent.” Summit Entertainment distributor of Divergent has now become part of Lionsgate.
All current reviews of Divergent are all sparkling with the majority of critics saying that the film most definitely lives up to and exceeds the pre-release social media hype.
The sci-fi, adventure chronicle’s first feature begins in a futuristic dystopia where society is divided into five factions that each represent a different virtue, teenagers have to decide if they want to stay in their faction or switch to another – for the rest of their lives. Tris Prior makes a choice that surprises everyone. Then Tris and her fellow faction-members have to live through a highly competitive initiation process to live out the choice they have made. They must undergo extreme physical and intense psychological tests, that transform them all. But Tris has a secret that she is Divergent, which means she doesn’t fit into any one group. If anyone knew, it would mean a certain death. As she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, this secret might help her save the people she loves… or it might destroy her.
Attentions are now turning away from the Twilight benchmark and towards the higher record set by the debut of Lionsgate’s other franchise The Hunger Games, which coiled together a domestic total of $152 million in its 2012 opening weekend. It will be interesting to see just how the next couple of days play out at the Box Office. However it is looking unlikely from current tracking that Shailene Woodley will overstep Jennifer Lawrence’s franchise debut.
Sequel to Divergent ‘Insurgent’ will begin shooting in May, in Atlanta. Slated for a March 20, 2015 release and a March 18, 2016, release for the third instalment of the franchise ‘Allegiant’.
Divergent will hold its European premiere on 30th March 2014 in London, England followed shortly later by its theatrical UK release on April 4th. The picture received its wide US release on March 21st.
About the Author
James Rush is the Founding, News & Chief Editor for TFM.