By Oliver Lyttelton | www.oliverlyttelton.com March 26, 2013 at 9:50AM
If we were betting men, and were asked to put money on what could be the latest young adult novel series to follow "Twilight" and "The Hunger Games" into becoming a cinematic phenomenon, we'd feel relatively safe putting our money on "Divergent." The book, the first in a trilogy by author Veronica Roth, is one of the bigger-selling books in the YA world of late, and "Twilight" backers Summit snapped the film rights up a while ago.
And they've got a pretty weighty collection of talent on board, with "The Illusionist" and "Limitless" director Neil Burger directing, and fast-rising actress Shailene Woodley, of "The Descendants," "The Spectacular Now" and the upcoming "The Amazing Spider-Man 2," in the lead role, with Kate Winslet in a rare blockbuster excursion in support. The film's been adding more and more supporting cast members as it gets closer to lensing, and three more relative unknowns have come on board.
According to an email from Summit, Ben Lloyd-Hughes, Ben Lamb and Christian Madsen have all landed roles in the film. Lloyd-Hughes (the twin brother of Henry Lloyd-Hughes, of "The Inbetweeners" and "Anna Karenina") has appeared in "Skins" and "The Hour," and has a part in Mike Newell's film of "Great Expecations," while Lamb is another Brit who'll appear with Max Irons and Rebecca Ferguson in upcoming period TV drama "The White Queen." Madsen just wrapped a part in Gia Coppola's adaptation of James Franco's "Palo Alto."
The film's set in a world where society is divided into factions who follow a single value, and all three will play 'initiates' alongside Woodley's lead character Tris in the Dauntless faction, who represent bravery. They join Woodley, Winslet, and other cast members Aaron Eckhart, Jai Courtney, Zoe Kravitz, Maggie Q, Ansel Elgort and Miles Teller in the film, and while they're not big names right now, could well end up surfing the wave of "Divergent" and its near-inevitable sequels into Robert Pattinson-style stardom (any fans of the books, let us know about the parts they're playing, and how major they might be). "Divergent" hits theaters on March 21st, 2014.