Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Brie Larson in Unicorn Store & The Spectacular Now, Miles Teller on scripts and duck hunting

Brie Larson, who won an Oscar this year for her leading performance in Room, is set to make her helming debut with the quirky independent comedy Unicorn Store. Larson also will star in the movie and produce it with David Bernad and Ruben Fleischer via their banner The District. Based on an original screenplay by Samantha McIntyre, the story tells of a woman named Kit who, after moving back in with her parents, receives a mysterious invitation to a store that will test her idea of what it really means to grow up. The deals are freshly inked and the filmmaking team is now prepping for an October production start. 

Brie Larson is the newest member of the Marvel Studios family, having become attached to star in the company's first female-centric film project, the high-profile Captain Marvel movie. 

She next stars in Legendary’s big-budget creature feature Kong: Skull Island, which impressed the Comic-Con crowd with its footage, and reteams with her Short Term 12 director Destin Daniel Cretton for Lionsgate’s coming-of-age drama The Glass Castle. The actress also leads the cast of Free Fire, Ben Wheatley’s crime thriller being released by A24.  Source:

"Have you turned her into a lush yet?" That's the pertinent question Cassidy (Brie Larson) asks her ex-boyfriend, Sutter Keely (Miles Teller) in James Ponsoldt's The Spectacular Now. Cassidy's concern belies the fact that she's referring to Sutter's new girlfriend, Aimee Finecky (Shailene Woodley). Is she trying to protect the naïve Aimee from the perhaps alcoholic Sutter's charming sort of peer pressure? Is Cassidy warning Sutter not to lose his new love the way he lost her? Or is she mindful of her own unresolved post-breakup feelings over Sutter's inability to simply subsist without an oversized plastic cup full of spiked soft drink in hand to sweeten the day? 

Sutter needs the innocent Aimee to look up to him, to help him through school, to provide the company he can't get from his workaholic mom, absent father (Kyle Chandler) or the guarded sister (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) who's moved to an upscale suburbia and decided to never look back. And Aimee needs Sutter's cocky empowerment to rub off on her in order to stand up to her overly dependent mother. That's what makes The Spectacular Now so unconventional. Sutter and Aimee's relationship is equal parts romantic and codependent.

Aimee's sober self-assuredness in contrast to Sutter's practiced cool makes The Spectacular Now feel just a bit unbalanced. You want to know why Aimee is attracted to the self-hating Sutter when she seems to have it so together in most respects. As their relationship progresses, it soon becomes apparent that Cassidy was right to have voiced her concern for Aimee, whatever her true motivation might be. Before long, Aimee is drinking as hard and as often as Sutter. 

Sutter's prom night gift to Aimee isn't a corsage or some other token of affection. It's a flask. Things aren't headed anywhere good for the couple. It takes a fateful meeting between Sutter and a person he looked up to for him to realize that something is wrong. There, he hears his own limited philosophy of making the most out of the present reflected back to him. For the first time, the non-committal now doesn't seem as spectacular as it's cracked up to be. Source:

Eric Walkuski sat down to talk to Miles Teller about his latest film, WAR DOGS, and asked the actor a few questions in regards to a film he was promoting at this time last year; FANTASTIC FOUR. For those that need a recap, FANTASTIC FOUR, the Fox-produced adaptation of the Marvel property directed by Josh Trank, ended up being savaged by critics and fans, publicly derided by the director, and was ultimately a flop in every sense of the word, making just $56 million domestically. 

However, the one thing that stood out in the film was the cast, which included Teller, Kate Mara, Michael B. Jordan, and Jamie Bell, all actors who could certainly rise to the occassion when given the right material: “I loved the cast, I loved the characters. I think it's such an interesting dynamic. I love how much they really need to rely on each other. This Avengers thing, they've kind of created their own Fantastic Four in a way, Marvel's first family. So yeah, absolutely, I would do another one”. Teller points out that he always begins with the script and his performance in mind, with the rest falling in the hands of the director. 

Whiplash was Damian [Chazelle]'s first feature, who would have known? I did that because of the script. I think certain things you can get sort of disenfranchised with a little bit. I can honestly say I've never just done something for money; I'd be really embarrassed for something like that to come out, that I had no attachment to the character, no attachment to the script. It takes a while before you're only working with the best directors, nobody's career is flawless.” Source:

War Dogs, the newest movie from Hangover director Todd Phillips, stars Jonah Hill and Miles Teller in the true story of Efraim Diveroli and David Packouz, two stoner buddies from Miami turned international arms dealers. “You can see it as a dollar sign, and that’s what these guys did,” Teller told Vulture at the premiere. “Even though these guys are dealing with $300 million contracts, and 100,000 rounds of AK47 ammo, to them it could have been Funyuns; it could have been Doritos, just exploiting a loophole.”

Set in what the film calls “Dick Cheney’s America,” Teller plays Packouz, the workhorse in the partnership, with Jonah Hill as Diveroli, a bro partial to gold jewelry, black tracksuits, and Scarface references. But the two actors have a different relationship with guns. “I’ve pretty much always felt the same way about guns. I’m not a big fan of them,” Hill said. “I think the movie is really good at pointing out how ridiculously easy it was for these two guys to become gunrunners the way our government is currently structured in that world.” In terms of gun control, Hill said he’d like to see more oversight and “more heavy screening, and making it harder overall for people to get guns.”

Teller is a little more comfortable with guns. “I’ve always had a respect for guns,” he said. “Once I got into a pretty rural town of Florida, it was not uncommon for your buddy’s dad to have a gun rack.” He said that he would be going duck hunting soon. “I’m going hunting this fall in North Dakota, so I’ll have my hunter’s safety [license] and everything. If you are going to use a weapon, just make sure that you’ve passed all the tests.” Be careful, Miles: This isn’t Nintendo! Source:

Saturday, August 06, 2016

"No Baggage" for Shailene Woodley

Based on a Salon article about a one-of-a-kind OkCupid date by Clara Bensen, Shailene Woodley is attached to star in the film "No Baggage," from New Line Cinema and Offspring Entertainment. Adam Shankman and Jennifer Gibgot of Offspring will be producing. Imagine an online date that includes traveling to eight different countries over the course of 21 days with one outfit and no luggage. As told in her original article “The Craziest OkCupid Date Ever,” the two traveled with exactly one outfit each and only essentials like passports, credit cards, iPhones, and toothbrushes. The Tracking Board has exclusively learned Woodley is attached to star in the film as Clara Bensen.

Shailene Woodley started her career as the lead character in Freeform’s The Secret Life of the American Teenager, before branching out into films, landing roles in features like The Descendants and The Spectacular Now. Her name got on the map in a big way when she starred in the popular movie The Fault in Our Stars, and then took on the main role in the YA action franchise Divergent. She’ll next be seen in the Oliver Stone film Snowden. Source:

The Spectacular Now commences with Sutter’s girlfriend, Cassidy (Brie Larson), dumping Sutter (Miles Teller) over something that’s relatively minor but that we sense is just the latest in a series of disappointments. They had a lot of fun, and they’re popular in school, but apart from drinking and having sex, they never really worked as a couple. Reeling from the break-up, Sutter gets drunk at a party and wakes up the next morning on someone’s lawn.

That someone is Aimee (Shailene Woodley), a classmate of lesser social standing who enlists his help with her paper route. He takes an interest in her, not romantically at first, but as a pal. Though he doesn’t say it in so many words, he seems to find her innocence and semi-nerdiness refreshing. She’s sweet and unaffected.

These two central performances by Miles Teller and Shailene Woodley are key. Teller finds the kernel of realism that makes us sympathize with Sutter and root for his success. You can see why Sutter’s classmates love being around him but don’t respect him. He’s a fun guy, a people person – a douchebag, maybe, but never a bully. In his part-time job at a men’s clothing store (where his boss, played by Bob Odenkirk, is something of a father figure), he’s all the customers’ favorite.

Shailene Woodley, from “The Descendants” and TV’s “The Secret Life of the American Teenager,” has an aura of kindness about her, a vulnerability that makes her a perfect counterpart for Teller’s cockiness. Spectacular it may not be, yet there’s so much tender, relatable emotion in these characters and their experiences, and so much underlying goodness in them. Source:

Analeigh Tipton is Megan, currently experiencing a deep, full and wide slump in her life. Jobless, loveless and crashing with Faiza (Jessica Szohr), she decides to engineer a one-night stand for herself at Faiza's urging and despite her own misgivings. And so Megan, on a website that looks just enough like OKCupid to dodge a lawsuit, winds up meeting Alec (Miles Teller), whose wit and whimsy inspire her to invite herself over to his place. When she tries to make her escape the morning after, though, the harsh light of morning is abetted by harsh weather, with the front door to Alec's building blocked by ice and snow on New Year's Eve.

Cinematographer Bobby Bukowski does what he can with the confined spaces of Teller's apartment, which is very different from Hollywood's usual, huge-apartment version of New York. Both Tipton and Teller are better than this material in Two Night Stand, but they do elevate its lowest points, and their rare high moments --when Alec explains to Megan that her ex-fiancée "has no idea how rare you are,"-- you get scenes so heartfelt and superbly performed. Source:

Max Nichols waded through piles of “super bro’d-out comedies and by-the-numbers rom-coms” before he found Mark Hammer’s story about a love that begins in lust. Nichols strove to emulate the immersive atmosphere of the films he loved growing up: “The candid ones that gave you great characters, a great sonic palette, and awesome laughs. Movies like ‘The Breakfast Club,’ and ‘Sixteen Candles.’ Megan and Alec remind me of the wonderfully unremarkable people who are your actual, real-life friends.” They look and act young, but they’re on the fast track to middle age. Megan was pre-med, but she confesses to Alec that she really just wants to be a wife and mother. And Alec is content to work at a bank—not a master-of-the-universe iBank but an actual bank that might lend you money. His longest speech is an “ambition is such bullshit” rant about old folks’ careerism and consumerism. Source:

Friday, August 05, 2016

Rami Malek, Miles Teller: Magnetic Head Games

Let’s also agree that if Elliot ever gets his brain in order than he and Angela are perfect for each other. That’s who Angela visits next. It's the first time the characters have shared the same screen since late last season, and it’s a heartbreaking little moment, because they’ve been apart due to Elliot’s love for Angela. He wants to fix himself. For her. The subtle reminder in Elliot’s dream sequence last week is all we need to remember that this guy is in love with Angela, so his admission this week doesn’t feel like it comes out of nowhere.

For the audience it’s a reminder that Elliot is human. For Angela he’s a call to action. Which leads her back to Darlene and F Society’s war room. It’s a moment that feels a lot like when the girlfriend get’s let in on the superhero’s secret. The Elliot’s many carefully parceled worlds are converging. Let’s just hope the latest world, full of Silk Road bad guys, doesn’t converge with his friends and family anytime soon. Source:

Mr. Robot star Rami Malek is negotiating to star with Charlie Hunnam in Papillon, a remake of the classic 1973 film. Hunnam will play the role originated by Steve McQueen, and Malek is in talks to play the Dustin Hoffman role. The film will shoot in September, directed by Michael Noer (Northwest) from a script by Prisoners writer Aaron Guzikowski. Malek's film credits include Night at the Museum, The Master and Need for Speed. Source:

Mr. Robot delights in being a challenging show, sometimes to a fault. And though I still look fondly at the bruises my brain suffered from the wrestling match of Season 1, Season 2 has been a slightly different story largely because the head games that proved magnetic in Season 1 came with the meat of a TV show -- clear plot -- and Season 2 has been content to dance in the ether and -- I apologize in advance for using this next term -- be very Mr. Robot-y. Source:

In 2013, Miles Teller did The Spectacular Now, which was a perfect “starter” lead role. The film — in which Teller plays charismatic, aimless Sutter Keely— is flawed, but he’s totally magnetic. Somehow, he managed to outshine Shailene Woodley, who, when this movie came out, was riding high from The Descendants, and being a weirdo in fairly homogenous Hollywood. This was right around when the John Cusack comparisons began; the heat was on. But the proper breakout was yet to come. 

His charisma matched perfectly (and surprisingly) with Woodley’s reserved teenager. She was delicate, he was ragged. Of course, these two have gone on to star in Divergent together, though as enemies not lovers. Teller told The Hollywood Reporter that he’d feel “comfortable doing any kind of stuff with Shailene.” Aww!

Next came 21 & Over and That Awkward Moment, two pretty bad movies: The script for That Awkward Moment is so thin that it feels like Teller is ad-libbing everything, which means watching it might be a fairly close approximation of what it’s like to hang with Teller in real life. Likening him to an athlete who joins the N.B.A. straight out of high school, his co-star Michael B. Jordan added Teller ‘got that raw talent that you’ve got to respect.’

Teller brought straight fire to the press tour for Two Night Stand (“We’re basically in a science experiment,” Teller's Alec proclaims). Since the movie is about sex and relationships, many of the interviews went to the bedroom, and he did not hold back. Elle magazine talked to him while he was loopy in Las Vegas: "I’ve taken Viagra before. You know, curiosity killed the cat. It’s a big-ass pill. My buddy in Vegas gave me one. He was like, “Bro, break it in half and take it two hours before you’re ready.” When people are very specific on the instructions, that makes me kind of wary. But he was right." Source:

At the premiere of his new comedy “War Dogs,” Miles Teller sounded stunned that the “Divergent” franchise will end with a television movie instead of a theatrical release. The actor has been in all three previous films and said that he barely got a heads up before Variety broke the news. The series was originally seen as a successor to “The Hunger Games,” but the third installment, “Allegiant,” stumbled at the box office when it hit theaters last spring. “I’ve talked to nobody,” Teller said. “I found out 20 minutes before Variety printed it.”

Teller’s comments mirror those of Shailene Woodley, who told press at Comic-Con last month that she hadn’t decided whether or not she would participate in the final film and that she’d been caught off guard by the news. Teller seems disappointed by the changes. “We all really enjoyed that time we spent together and those characters,” he added. Source:

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

Shailene Woodley vs Jennifer Lawrence, Sex Scenes (The Spectacular Now, Passengers)

Jennifer Lawrence is not only an Oscar-winning actress with a household nickname, she's also one of Hollywood's most in-demand young stars, who seems to have her pick of the best roles while others are left to comb through her leftovers. 

Shailene Woodley, for example, had a similar start in the biz and has also enjoyed critical acclaim, but career-wise, Lawrence is unquestionably the girl on fire right now. As producers were assembling the Hunger Games cast, both Lawrence and Woodley had recently drawn critical raves. Lawrence's work in Winter's Bone earned her the first of her four Oscar nominations, and Woodley's part in The Descendants gained her a Golden Globe nom. While Woodley's box office record is nothing to shake a stick at ($1.25 billion worldwide), Lawrence's commercial clout is even more impressive: $5.273 billion worldwide, earning an average of $139 million in domestic sales. 

Woodley's The Fault In Our Stars did very well too, but some of her other films (like The Spectacular Now and White Bird in a Blizzard) were DOA, money-wise. As her career shifts into post-YA franchise mode, Woodley has been somewhat pigeonholed—a marked contrast to Lawrence, who's comparatively free to spread her wings in a variety of genres. Woodley will star in the true story-based film Snowden, featuring the same serious, seldom-smiling persona that has become synonymous with her roles. 

Meanwhile, you'll soon see Lawrence keeping her fans on their toes with a new sci-fi adventure (Passengers, which hits theaters on Dec. 21, 2016), a wartime biopic (Steven Spielberg's It's What I Do), and a thriller (Darren Aronofsky's as-yet-unnamed project). Woodley probably has the capacity to do more, but hasn't had enough opportunities to prove it yet. 

Headlines sell tickets, and being the subject of a mass photo-hacking incident, or breaking up with her latest boyfriend, it seems like just about anything Lawrence does makes national news. Lawrence has a gift for gab, and she knows how and when to use it. Her constant self-deprecation and quick wit with the media make her relatable and easy to root for. 

Meanwhile, Woodley's private life is… well, private, which means people may feel less invested in her "personal brand"—and, ultimately, her career. Even when she did have a haircut heard 'round the world moment, it was for a film, and although she's active on social media, it's largely for political discourse that lifts none of her personal veil. 

Woodley's rather reserved demeanor during interviews gives audiences little to chew on during her public appearances and certainly doesn't leave the kind of lasting impression that tends to drive people to theaters. Lawrence is also the face of Dior, whose clothing she frequently dons on the red carpet and accessories she models in print ads. Woodley, on the other hand, has no such fashion house endorsement and is thus not plastered all over billboards and magazine pages. She's dabbled in a bit of charity work and environmental advocacy, but she's yet to become the face of any particular organization—she did speak at a Bernie Sanders rally during the 2016 presidential campaign. Source:

In Passengers, they play a writer (Jennifer Lawrence) and a mechanic (Chris Pratt) who wake up early during 120-year trip to another planet. "It was just nerve-racking," Lawrence told E! News in May of the sex scene. "It's not even about your co-star because Pratt is so wonderful and lovely. My nerves weren't about him." She said the anxiety stemmed from being watched by "everyone you work with--all of the cameramen, all the producers and the director." Source:

"It's my favorite scene in The Spectacular Now. It sounds so funny to say that. It really is," Woodley enthused. "I can't think of one single love-making scene in any film that I've ever been, 'Yeah, that's real,' or 'That could actually happen that way.' That scene was a nice way for both of us to lose our on-screen virginities because it was a really safe environment, and we felt very cared for. And everybody was really compassionate towards our needs and not making it feel exposed or exploited in any way." Of course, it helped that Woodley felt totally comfortable thanks to Miles Teller.

"James Ponsoldt, the director, and I, we were throwing names around to each other like, 'What about this guy? What about this guy? He's a great actor. This guy's really attractive. What are we looking for in a Sutter?' We couldn't find anyone that would be believably charismatic without having to act in a certain manner," Woodley recalled. "And I'll never forget it. I was on vacation, and James called me and was like, 'What about Miles Teller?' It felt right. It was just one of those moments where you instinctually know it has to be that person."

"I think we help each other though," Woodley said of Teller. "He helps me, I think, have more fun when I get caught up in being serious. And I think I help ground himself in a way that's perhaps more natural than his other choices." Source:

Esquire: -What about the sex scene?

Miles Teller: -For prep, it was going to be my first sex scene in this movie, and I thought I'd buff out, and Shailene said no I don't think so, have a little belly. So for a couple months, I didn't go to the gym and drank a little more. It was awesome until I finished The Spectacular Now and had three weeks to prepare for Two Night Stand and knew I was taking my shirt off again, so I had to workout really hard. There's a little bit of leftover Sutter in him. I enjoy making comedies but dramas come more naturally. Source:

Monday, August 01, 2016

Boxing Fables: Robert Montgomery, Miles Teller

“Bleed for This” (2016) starring Miles Teller (Open Road). This marks the second attempt to get a boxing movie into awards season competition, after The Weinstein Company unsuccessfully launched “Hands of Stone” at Cannes in May.  Source:

The much-loved Here Comes Mr. Jordan has spawned two direct remakes and a sequel, but the 1941 original retains a unique charm that no other version has been able to duplicate. Why does it keep such a hold on our affections? Perhaps it’s the way it mixes elements in a way unique to its era—screwball comedy, slapstick farce, boxing fable, supernatural romance. Directed by Alexander Hall and released by Columbia Pictures, it boasts a just-crazy-enough premise—angels try to return the soul of a boxer, who has been mistakenly snatched by an overeager apprentice, to a ring-ready body back on Earth—yet has enough real-world pathos to leave a lasting emotional impact. The rollicking dialogue and gleefully complex plot, the film’s belief in friendship, destiny, and true love. 

Together, Montgomery and Rains, the tough guy and the seraph, work to put Joe back on Earth as the champion boxer he was meant to be. Montgomery, a lifelong conservative whose patriotism had spurred him to spend time driving an ambulance in France, had only recently returned to his home studio, MGM. But, despite his restlessness there, when Montgomery found himself loaned out to the perpetually low-budget Columbia, he wasn’t pleased about it. 

Columbia wanted Evelyn Keyes to resemble their top star Rita Hayworth, and thus they padded her figure and made her wear hairpieces to imitate Hayworth’s luscious mane. In addition to her hair and makeup discomfort, Keyes at the time was having a red-hot affair with the married director Charles Vidor. One day, she recounts in her autobiography, Montgomery drawled to her, “I hear you’re running around with a married man.” Unable to tell if he was joking, and not much caring either way, Keyes snapped back, “What business is it of yours?” 

The tenderness of Keyes and Montgomery’s love scenes is a small triumph of acting, and offers proof that on-screen chemistry is a mystery no scientist can ever solve. Presumably all hard feelings were, if not forgotten, at least soothed by Here Comes Mr. Jordan’s stellar notices and boffo box office.

In terms of film history, 1941 was a triumph. Hollywood’s output that year was staggering, even by the eccentric standards of what films got Oscar nominations, which list includes The Maltese Falcon, How Green Was My Valley, The Little Foxes, Suspicion, and Citizen Kane. (Here Comes Mr. Jordan garnered seven nominations, winning best story for Harry Segall and best adapted screenplay for Sidney Buchman and Seton Miller.) If you went to the cinema and sat through the newsreels, however, 1941 was terrifying. Even before Pearl Harbor in December, many Americans realized we wouldn’t be able to sit this one out much longer.

Then there’s Joe’s original accident, the plane hurtling toward Earth; we’re told 7013 pulled Joe out ahead of time because he couldn’t stand the thought of the boxer’s pain on impact. Even the pretty tune that Joe hilariously butchers on his ever-present lucky saxophone is “The Last Rose of Summer,” based on a poem by Thomas Moore about loneliness and death (the unheard lyrics start, “’Tis the last rose of summer, / Left blooming alone”). It takes sure hands at script and direction and a nimble cast to maintain the sweetness around such bitter pills.

Critic Dave Kehr once referred to Alexander Hall as “the guy who got the Columbia projects that Frank Capra turned down,” and indeed it is hard to discern a distinctive imprint from Hall’s direction. Aided by the black-and-white genius of Capra’s frequent cinematographer Joseph Walker, Hall’s direction is unobtrusive to the point of invisibility, though some compositions stand out. There is the prop of the grand piano slicing the frame, as Mr. Jordan explains to Joe that Farnsworth is being murdered upstairs, thus offering a fresh body for Joe to inhabit.

The backstage stairs that soar up in the last scene are at first romantic, as Joe’s last incarnation and Bette recognize each other across this world and the next, then poignant, when Mr. Jordan steps up to say farewell—for now. The real emotional climax, however, has come just before, when Max cradles the saxophone that has stayed with Joe through all his various guises. Gleason’s expression says Joe was like a son to Max—a son he’s lost three times now. 

The pleasures of Here Comes Mr. Jordan are not those you get from a visual stylist but those found from watching actors working at the very top of their abilities, in a clever plot with skillful dialogue. And actors are, after all, part of a film’s visual elements. A camera trained in stillness on Claude Rains is as good as or better than many another film’s flashy traveling shot, even when, as in several scenes, he’s out of focus, stretching elegantly in a chair in the background, listening to what’s going on.

Evelyn Keyes, discussing Here Comes Mr. Jordan, told a reporter in 1989, “I enjoyed doing comedy. It’s complex. You can’t think you’re being funny. Comedy is serious business.” Turning death into comedy is Here Comes Mr. Jordan’s serious accomplishment. Source:

Humphrey Bogart, Evelyn Keyes & Danny Kaye in front of the Dies Committee (of the House Committee on Un-American Activities), 1940

The director of “Whiplash,” Damien Chazelle, said that Miles Teller’s face drew him in, reminding him of a young Humphrey Bogart, Gene Hackman: men who could play dashing heroes, romantic charmers or troubled everymen. “There’s something very malleable about his face,” Mr. Chazelle said. “In terms of how you shoot it or light it, he can have this tough, battered boxer physique. Other times, he looks like a child: vulnerable. The great actors’ faces are these muscles of emotion.”

“I feel like a lot of actors of my generation are not proper actors,” Miles Teller said flatly in an empty hotel conference room. Filmgoers who have only seen Mr. Teller’s frisky bro comedies like “21 & Over,” or his bawdy romantic comedy “Two Night Stand” might be surprised by his bravado. As he demonstrated in the moving coming-of-age indie “The Spectacular Now,” Mr. Teller is capable of much more than the wisecracking, laid-back charm he exudes so naturally.

“I’m pretty hot now,” he said, flashing a wry smile with the self-aware, somewhat ridiculous and somehow sincere swagger that has become his improbably winning trademark. “I guess I was lacking sex appeal at the time. I don’t know if I found it.” Source:

Based on a true story, “War Dogs” follows two friends in their early 20s (Jonah Hill and Miles Teller) living in Miami during the first Iraq War who exploit a little-known government initiative that allows small businesses to bid on U.S. Military contracts.  Starting small, they begin raking in big money and are living the high life.  But the pair gets in over their heads when they land a 300 million dollar deal to arm the Afghan Military—a deal that puts them in business with some very shady people, not the least of which turns out to be the U.S. Government. The film is targeting an August 19th release. Source:

Teen Choice Awards 2016 — Choice Movie Actress Action/Adventure Winner: Shailene Woodley, The Divergent Series: Allegiant

It appears that Lionsgate is trying to salvage the Divergent franchise as best they can by positioning it for a television audience. Currently, the plan appears to be to complete the current story arc with the main cast with Ascendant, while using the film to introduce a new group of characters who will carry the spinoff television show. It’s not clear if any of the film’s cast will appear in the television show. Downgrading the film to become a glorified television pilot could help cut the company’s losses while appeasing fans of the series, even if it’s a huge blow to Lionsgate. Films such as Stargate and Buffy the Vampire Slayer have been spun off into extremely successful television franchises, and it’s possible that the company is hoping to score a similar level of success with DivergentSource: