Another action-romance with a female hero has dominated the weekend box office.
Critics may not have liked Divergent, but audiences sure did. In addition to the $56 million weekend haul, the Shailene Woodley received a CinemaScore of A from audiences, which indicates great word of mouth.
New York Times critic Manohla Dargis, a champion for the film’s success, certainly had her wish come true. She wrote in her review, “Yea for Divergent, a dumb movie that I hope makes major bank if only as a reminder of the obvious: Women can drive big and little movies, including the pricey franchises that fire up the box office and the culture.“ It was girls and women who carried the YA adaptation to first place; female moviegoers made up 69% of the audience.
THR also reports that Divergent‘s high school-as-life premise — in which society is divided into five cliques — attracted adult audiences, with half of ticket-buyers over the age of 25.
A studio rep for the film stated, “We needed to be exactly where we ended up…. Despite what other people were speculating, we always felt that mid-50s would be a great start for this new property — a great way to launch a franchise.”
Summit will begin production on a sequel, Insurgent, this May.