Aaron Eckhart May Be Divergent

And Theo James has scored a lead role

Aaron Eckhart, Theo James

Fans of Veronica Roth’s dystopian young adult novel series Divergent certainly have a lot to talk about at the moment, as director Neil Burger has steadily been building his cast for the film adaptation. Aaron Eckhart, Ray Stevenson and Miles Teller are all in talks to take roles and Downton Abbey veteran Theo James has landed one of the plum jobs on the film.

Shailene Woodley is already committed to star as our heroine, Beatrice “Tris” Prior, who lives in a society where everyone who turns 16 is selected to join one particular group based on human traits such as intellect and bravery. But those who are “divergent” as Tris turns out to be, can’t join any one group. And there’s a conspiracy to kill them off...

While we thought A Good Day To Die Hard’s Jai Courtney – who signed on earlier this week – might be playing her mentor, Four. That role has gone instead to James, who also cropped up in The Inbetweeners’ leap to the big screen and can currently be found on US cop drama Golden Boy.

“Theo is not only an incredibly talented actor, he is also who we envisioned as Four when reading Veronica’s novel, which has taken the world by storm,” Rob Friedman and Patrick Wachsberger, co-chairmen of Lionsgate Motion Picture Group said in a joint statement picked up by Variety. “As we continue to develop the film, the studio remains committed to providing fans with a movie adaptation that stays as true to the book as possible and we are confident that we have done so with our selection of Shailene and Theo in the leading roles.”

Variety’s report doesn’t specify whom Eckhart, Stevenson and Teller might be playing, but we do know that Zoe Kravitz is aboard to play one of Tris’ friends, Maggie Q will be a tattoo parlour owner who helps her and Ansel Elgort will be her twin brother, who changes from one faction to another, much to the disgust of his family. Kate Winslet is also circling a part, likely that of Natalie, Tris’ mother.

Vanessa Taylor is currently writing the script under Burger’s direction and shooting will start soon in Chicago for a March 21, 2014 release.