Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Shailene Woodley Franchise Coming Back To Life On Streaming

There was a time, way back in the 2010s, when movie studios looked at YA novels the way Daniel Plainview looked at oil. Following the frankly bananas success story that was "The Twilight Saga" and "The Hunger Games," everyone wanted their own brooding teen drama complete with a love triangle and an authoritarian regime to take down, preferably in the form of five or more books, but a trilogy would do in a pinch.

Out of the zeitgeist came "The Divergent Series," a trio of dystopian action fantasy stories featuring the requisite division of humanity into color-coded groups and a whole lot of sleeveless tees. The films follow Beatrice "Triss" Prior (Shailene Woodley), a young dreamer born into the ruling class but with aptitudes that would allow her to do almost anything. As tends to happen in these situations, the question of whether an Orwellian government body should have control over the choices of its people pops up, leading to combat, thrilling chases, and fewer sequels than Lionsgate was probably hoping for. While its genre doppelgänger, "The Hunger Games," is experiencing a massive, viral resurgence, the trend is clearly rubbing off on "The Divergent Series." The films are currently enjoying a second life of their own, thanks to the magic of streaming services.

Streaming is breathing new life into The Divergent Series

"The Divergent Series," comprised of 2014's "Divergent," 2015's "Insurgent," and 2016's "Allegiant," features an absolute banger of a cast. In addition to Shailene Woodley, you'll get appearances from decade-younger versions of actors who have since gone on to international fame. Theo James, Jai Courtney, Zoë Kravitz, Miles Teller, and Ansel Elgort all pop up in the first movie alone. Kate Winslet also gets to shine as the villain, with fellow icons Octavia Spencer and Naomi Watts appearing in the sequel. By the third entry, audiences even got a little Bill Skarsgård and Jeff Daniels thrown in for good measure. 

If you're brand new to the series, though, prepare for some disappointment. The franchise infamously ended on a cliffhanger after "Allegiant" failed to muster up "Mockingjay" money at the box office or the sort of critical reception that you'd hope for, leading to the cancelation of the proposed fourth film. This was sort of a big deal, considering that the studio had purposely split the last book in the series into two movies a la "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows," which left fans feeling abandoned and bummed out when a conclusion failed to materialize. They weren't the only ones, either — when the possibility of a follow-up in the form of a TV show was considered, Woodley made it very clear that she wasn't interested

But hey, could the reemergence of fan enthusiasm on streaming, almost a decade after the debut of the first film, help convince the studio and actors to hash out their differences and bring back "The Divergent Series?

No, probably not. At least you can still watch those first three movies on HBO Max, though.