Lionsgate’s THE DIVERGENT SERIES: ASCENDANT Finds New Life At Starz For TV Drama Developement

2014 was supposed to be the start of a new theatrical sci-fi action film saga with the release of Neil Burger’s Divergent after Summit Entertainment acquired the rights for bestselling author Veronica Roth’s book series in 2011. The film was a Springtime hit which did wonders for the Lionsgate while the sequel, Robert Schwentke’s The Divergent Series: Insurgent, did amply well despite not besting its predecessor the following year.

Schwentke returned to the helm for what should have been the third of a four-film series, directing The Divergent Series: Allegiant and ultimately showing a downward trend at the box office for the celebrated YA property. Lionsgate went into brainstorming mode in its autopsy of the film’s lackluster performance and subsequently decided to shelve the film indefinitely in exchange for a potential continuation of the sci-fi saga on the small screen.

All’s been quiet on that front, save for updates earlier this year pertaining to franchise star, actress Shailene Woodley’s own refusal to carry over into the series. That could reportedly change though, as Lionsgate is back in the news this week with word from Deadline of the show’s landing at Lionsgate subsidiary, Starz, with Adam Cozad (Tarzan, Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit) and Lee Toland Krieger (The Age Of Adaline) now boarding the series.

Cozad and Krieger will executive produce, as well as write and direct the series, respectively, following the film series that sets our saga in a future dystopia where the city of Chicago’s walled-in five-faction autocracy is governed according to the personalities of the population’s young adults. Therein lies the story of Tris Prior, a young woman whose anomalous status as a Divergent institutes her as a threat against the system, setting her on a harrowing journey of self-discovery, love and survival against the actions of a powerful and corrupt bureau responsible for genetic manipulation.

Lionsgate hopes a TV film will help initiate some new characters in carrying the series as it is not known if the remainder of the cast, including Theo James, Zoë Kravitz and Jeff Daniels, much like Woodley, will reprise their roles for the show. (Deadline)