‘Divergent’ trailer, director Q&A tease ‘brutal’ action

Nov. 13, 2013 | 10:14 a.m.

“Divergent” fans got a glimpse of Tris Prior’s world in a new trailer for the upcoming movie adaptation and a live chat with the director Wednesday morning.

The film, based on the popular young adult book trilogy by Veronica Roth, is set in a dystopian future in which teenagers are sorted into five factions based on their virtues.

The trailer introduces heroine Tris, played by Shailene Woodley, who is born into the faction Abnegation, which esteems selflessness above all other characteristics. Like all teenagers, Tris takes an aptitude test to determine which faction she ultimately belongs to — Abnegation, Amity (kindness), Candor (honesty), Dauntless (bravery) or Erudite (intelligence).

“The only way our society can survive is for each of you to claim your rightful place,” Kate Winslet’s Jeanine Matthews tells the young people in the trailer. “The future belongs to those who know where they belong.”

But Tris’ test reveals that she possesses characteristics from more than one faction.

“They call it ‘Divergent,’ ” Maggie Q’s Tori tells Tris in the trailer. “You can’t let them find out about you. They’re always watching. You have to hide where they’d never expect to find you.”

Four (Theo James) in a character poster for "Divergent." (Summit Entertainment)

Four (Theo James) in a character poster for “Divergent.” (Summit Entertainment)

Tris joins Dauntless, the faction that values courage, and begins her physical and mental training, preparing her muscles and her mind to face her worst fears. There she meets Four (Theo James), who harbors doubts about the social system in which they live.

PHOTOS: ‘Divergent’ character posters

“I don’t want to be just one thing,” he says in the trailer, showing Tris his tattoos of each faction’s symbol. “I want to be brave and selfless and intelligent and honest and kind.”

The trailer teased many key moments from the book, including the choosing ceremony, Tris’ dramatic first entrance into Dauntless headquarters, jumping on and off the Dauntless trains, ziplining above future Chicago, climbing the carousel, the fear simulations and the first book’s climactic moments in the Abnegation sector.

The trailer was followed by a live chat with the film’s director, Neil Burger, who talked about his efforts to stay true to the spirit of the book and avoid an overly shiny or bleak view of the future.

“I wanted it to look real. I wanted to shoot on the streets of Chicago where it takes place,” he said. “There are some futuristic touches to it, but it is real.”

Burger talked about the physical challenges the actors faced, including jumping on and off moving trains and performing scenes with hand-to-hand combat.

“They’re brutal,” he said. “They’re intense. They have a rawness to them.”

Shailene Woodley in "Divergent." (Jaap Buitendijk / Summit Entertainment)

Tris Prior (Shailene Woodley) lives in a dystopian future in which teenagers are sorted into five factions in “Divergent.” (Jaap Buitendijk / Summit Entertainment)

He said he hoped that Tris’ story would appeal to adults as well as young people.

“She goes on this incredible journey from being just a regular person like all of us to kind of this badass warrior who gets put in this really difficult situation,” he said.

“Divergent,” which also stars Ashley Judd, Zoe Kravitz, Jai Courtney, Ray Stevenson, Miles Teller and others, is due out March 21, 2014.

– Noelene Clark | @NoeleneClark | Google+


Tris (Shailene Woodley) in a character poster for "Divergent." (Summit Entertainment)

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13 Responses to ‘Divergent’ trailer, director Q&A tease ‘brutal’ action

  1. stormbringer says:

    Oh brother, haven't we seen this already aka Hunger Games…?!?!

    • Austin says:

      you must of not read the book yet…. it is completely different than the hunger games.

    • sam says:

      divergent is like huger games because its a distopian novel… which is a genre … but in my opinion it is much better than hunger games. So read Divergent before you decide its already been seen.

    • not gonna tell u says:

      no its even better its divergent….

    • Woahman says:

      This is not like the hunger games. You probably think that they're similar because its a distopian novel. Also, you should really read the books. They're beyond amazing. i cant wait till i see the movie! So look at the description of the movie or read the books before you critzize okay.

  2. Kat1054 says:

    I AM FANGIRLING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Seriously cannot wait for this movie! I have been reading Divergent, writing fanfiction on Divergent, obsessing about Divergent, and now I get to watch the Divergent world come to life. Is that a little too much fangirling? Maybe, but I know people who are worse than me, lol. I hope this movie will be as good as the trailer is.

    • jessica says:

      i might be worse than you because watching this trailer got my heart racing kind of crying and so far i see that they are being loyal to the book except uriah not being in there and Eric isn't pierced enough. Oh and OMG Tobias <3

      • Kat1054 says:

        I KNOW RIGHT?! I wish Uriah was in the first movie, he is my favorite! Uriahxme <3!!!
        I agree, they could've done better with the look of Eric, but overall, I hope it'll be GREAT!
        Right now, I am OBSESSING! Also, the trailer made my hop up and down in my chair with my fangirl cry of happiness. I literally cannot wait!!

  3. guest says:

    It seems more of the "bestsellers" genre of movies directed to teens such as the Host or the City of Bones, even Hunger Games. Young person is faced with social inequality and there is a bigger cause and fight yet there is always romantic love with extremely generic personality. Opposite sex counter part who is trying hard to fix current world, sees unique quality on main character that leads to love scene and changing of world by changing the perspective of others. Not to bash but the movie formula seems the same. Would like more creative influence when it comes to such movies.

    • Kat1054 says:

      I see the whole similar "best-sellers" book thing as ice cream. It's the same desert, yes, but you pick your flavor.
      My favorite flavor is Divergent. #yummy!

    • Kat1054 says:

      I see the whole similar "best-sellers" book thing as ice cream. It's the same desert, yes, but it's different flavors.
      My favorite flavor is Divergent.

  4. Nel says:

    I don't care if people say Divergent is just gonna be like The Hunger Games. I know it's a lot better already!

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