The movie adaptation of Veronica Roth’s best-selling young adult novel Divergent is still a few months away from release, but Summit Entertainment is already making plans for the sequels.
The studio revealed Monday that director Neil Burger would not return to direct Insurgent the second planned movie in the trilogy. The studio also revealed plans for a third and seemingly final movie in the trilogy, setting a tentative release date of March 18, 2016 for Allegiant.
It’s become trendy for the final movie in YA franchises to be split into two parts, as was the case with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, and the forthcoming The Hunger Games: Mockingjay.
But so-far, it seems Summit is set on keeping the Divergent movies to a trilogy, just like the books they’re based on. And it’s a good thing, since Allegiant, the third and final book in the series released earlier this year, doesn’t really have enough content to fill out two films.
Meanwhile, Summit is now searching for a new director to replace Burger for Insurgent, the second film the franchise, which is tentatively set for release March 20, 2015.
Lionsgate, the parent company of Summit, is clearly betting that Divergent will be another breakaway hit in the YA book-to-film market, following the studio’s previous successes with Twilight and The Hunger Games.
Other YA franchises turned films that were released earlier this year were met with mediocre results (at best, in some cases). Beautiful Creatures fizzled at the box office, and The Mortal Instruments sequel was temporarily put on hold following a mild reception from fans.