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The dystopian young adult novel series genre has given birth to a number of big stars and Divergent is no exception. Based on the trilogy of books by Veronica Roth, the film and its sequels, about a teen whose condition makes her unfit to live in any of the five separate factions her post-apocalyptic society is divided into, made household names out of stars Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort, to name a few, who have since diverged relatively far from their franchise counterparts.
What about the rest of the cast? Of course, Kate Winslet and Ashley Judd were already big-time, award-winning stars before starring in Divergent and Zoë Kravitz is everywhere now, but I cannot recall, for instance, the last place I saw Theo James. Not to mention, it has been a while since Jai Courtney has shown up in five movies a year. What’s happening there?
Shailene Woodley (Tris Prior)
After making waves on the teen drama The Secret Life of the American Teenager and 2011 film The Descendants, Shailene Woodley led the cast of Divergent as Tris Prior, a teen born with the titular affliction that makes her a threat to her dystopian society. She has remained a major threat in Hollywood since, playing Edward Snowden's lover in Oliver Stone's biopic, earning her second Golden Globe nomination for HBO hit Big Little Lies, and braving the desolate ocean in the 2018's Adrift.
In addition to being brave for the ocean in collaboration with Greenpeace and helping victims of anxiety with her own charity, Woodley has a number of exciting acting projects in the works, including the 1960s London-set romance Last Letter from Your Lover and voicing her first animated character as the lead in ScaryGirl, alongside Divergent alum Jai Courtney.
Theo James (Four)
English actor Theo James became known to American audiences as Tobias "Four" Eaton in Divergent and, yet he never had a role quite as big as the Dauntless member with a serious crush on Tris Prior. Despite this, he has been a part of numerous high-profile projects, including many Netflix original properties such as post-apocalyptic action film How It Ends and a trio of fantasy series: The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, The Witcher, and Castlevania. Additionally, in 2018, he starred in a musical audio drama adaptation of H.G. Wells' The War of the Worlds, landed the male lead role of a 2019 Masterpiece Theater rendition of Jane Austen's Sandition, and recently wrapped filming on Archive, scheduled to release in 2021, in which he plays an engineer developing a human-like AI.
Kate Winslet (Jeanine Matthews)
When she joined the cast of Divergent, Kate Winslet was, essentially, the biggest name attached to the project, mostly due to her unforgettable role in one of the biggest cinematic hits of all time, Titanic. After her character, the ruthless Erudite leader Jeanine Matthews, met a bitter end in the 2015 sequel Insurgent, the Oscar-winner received her seventh nod from the Academy as Johanna Howard in Steve Jobs, tried to help Will Smith get over his grief in 2016's Collateral Beauty, and struggled to survive the wildness with Idris Elba in The Mountain Between Us, to name a few. In the future, the English actor will be seen in a 19th Century romance with Saoirse Ronan in Ammonite, provide the voice of the equestrian title character of a Black Beauty reboot, and is reuniting with James Cameron for Avatar 2.
Ansel Elgort (Caleb Prior)
While he played Shailene Woodley's brother in the Divergent films, Ansel Elgort's biggest claim to fame at time would be playing her lover in The Fault in Our Stars the following year. Yet, the 26-year-old has since grown out of young adult novel adaptations (mostly), especially after playing the lead of Edgar Wright's dazzling action thriller Baby Driver: a role that also allowed him to show off his lesser-known musicianship, which director Steven Spielberg put to the ultimate test in his remake of West Side Story, which is set to come in December 2020. Other than continuing to moonlight as a rapper, Elgort is preparing for his first television role as the lead in the drama series Tokyo Vice and starring alongside Jake Gyllenhaal and Zendaya in the crime thriller Finest Kind.
Miles Teller (Peter Hayes)
Another actor who has been romantically involved with Shailene Woodley (onscreen, that is) is Miles Teller, whose relationship with her character in 2013's The Spectacular Now is a far cry from Tris Prior's relationship with Peter Hayes, a hot-headed Dauntless transfer and one of Divergent's main antagonists. At least it was a role that the Whiplash star could have channeled his own personal distaste for the material into and would pave the way for more grounded projects, such as boxer Vinny Pazienza in sports biopic Bleed for This, a solider suffering from PTSD in Thank You for Your Service, and a first responder taking on a historic wildfire in Only the Brave. Teller will appear in, arguably, his biggest role to date as the son of Goose in Top Gun: Maverick and reunite with Woodley in After Exile, playing a man guilty of manslaughter who seeks redemption.
Zoë Kravitz (Christina)
Like Peter Hayes, Christina (played Zoë Kravitz) also transferred from the Candor faction to Dauntless, but, unlike Peter, she happened to get along very well with Tris Prior. The daughter of Lenny Kravitz and Lisa Bonet, who has also dabbled in making music as the frontwoman of two bands in the past decade, has only gotten bigger since starring in Divergent, from playing a refugee slave wife in Mad Max: Fury Road, Leta Lestrange in the Fantastic Beasts series, and sharing the screen once again with Shailene Woodley in the scandalous HBO drama Big Little Lies. Other than starring as the gender-flipped lead of the Hulu original series adaptation of Nick Hornby's novel High Fidelity, Kravitz recently followed in her step-father, Jason Momoa's, footsteps by being cast as an iconic DC character, Catwoman, in Matt Reeves' highly anticipated reboot, The Batman.
Ben Lloyd-Hughes (Will)
Christina’s love interest, who actually sacrificed his own life for Tris Prior's benefit, was a former Erudite transfer name Will, played by Ben Lloyd-Hughes. Divergent is easily the British actor's biggest role to date, particularly to American audiences, despite a plentiful filmography following the dystopian hit, such starring alongside Emilia Clarke and Sam Claflin in the charming romantic drama Me Before You, playing Florence Pugh's brother in the Netflix exclusive horror thriller Malevolent, and appearing as various characters in the made-for-TV Oscar Wilde biopic The Importance of Being Oscar. Lloyd-Hughes recently wrapped filming The King's Daughter, also staring Pierce Brosnan and his Skins co-star Kaya Scodelario, and is preparing for a role in a miniseries called Industry, which is set during the aftermath of the 2008 economic collapse.
Maggie Q (Tori)
The first person to learn of Tris’ divergence is Tori, played by Maggie Q, who was certified badass long before Divergent, from her amusing henchwoman role in Live Free or Die Hard and playing the titular assassin of TV series Nikita. The Hawaiian actress moved on to play characters less involved with physical combat (in live action projects, specifically), such as on the ABC political drama Designated Survivor and Blumhouse's reboot of Fantasy Island, but she kicks plenty of butt from the comfort of a recording studio as the voice of Wonder Woman on the beloved animated series Young Justice. She will explore various kinds of genres in future films, including horror thriller Death of Me, a comedy about a couple's obsessed with settling their dispute called The Argument, and Long Gone Heroes, a war film also set to star Guy Pearce and Sir Ben Kingsley.
Jai Courtney (Eric)
Since and (even before) playing the sadistic Dauntless inductee trainer Eric in the Divergent series until his demise in the second chapter, Jai Courtney has seemingly been on a steadily committed journey to join the legacy of as many film franchises as possible, playing John McClane's secret agent son in A Good Day to Die Hard, landing a small role opposite Tom Cruise in Jack Reacher, and filling the role of Kyle Reese in Terminator Genisys along the way. In what is arguably his most fitting role to date, the Aussie actor will reprise DC villain Captain Boomerang in The Suicide Squad, which director James Gunn has described as neither a sequel nor a reboot, and will voice Dr. Maybee in the Shailene Woodley led animated film Scarygirl.
Are you now eager to revisit Divergent again, or are you just eager to seek out the cast’s further endeavors? Let us know in the comments and be sure to check back for more information on the sci-fi series and updates on actors from your favorite movies and TV shows here on CinemaBlend.