'Divergent' starts off with $4.9 million Thursday night, 'Insurgent' gets the green light

By Daniel S Levine,

Lionsgate and Summit could not be happier with the launch of Divergent. The Shailene Woodley-starring film got off to a great start with early screenings Thursday night and the studio has decided to greenlight the sequel.

Divergent cost the studio $85 million to make and it will be shown in 3,900 locations this weekend, including on 350 IMAX screens. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the film made $4.9 million from the early screenings.

That’s great news for the studio, which had reason to be cautiously optimistic as other YA adaptations have flopped recently. But Divergent is expected to make $60 million by the end of the weekend. All that good news has made Lionsgate and Summit see that Insurgent needs to get moving as soon as possible.

“We're confident that Divergent is on its way to becoming another important franchise for us, and we have just greenlit the second film, Insurgent,” Lionsgate Chief Executive Officer Jon Feltheimer told TheWrap.

Insurgent is the second part of Veronica Roth’s Divergent trilogy. Neil Burger directed the first film, but he’s not going to helm Insurgent.

image courtesy of Summit/EPK

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