‘Divergent: Ascendant’ Lands New Director

Following director Robert Schwentke’s exit from “The Divergent Series: Ascendant,” Lionsgate has tapped “Age of Adaline” helmer Lee Toland Krieger as its new helmer.

Production is still on track to start this spring in order to meet next year’s June 9 release date. Sources say Schwentke departed the project because he needed a break. His exit wasn’t caused by any pre-production troubles between him and the studio.

The third film in the Shailene Woodley franchise, “The Divergent Series: Allegiant” is scheduled to open on March 18. The first two films — “Divergent” and “Insurgent” — have grossed more than $586 million worldwide.

The pic stars Woodley, Miles Teller, Theo James and Naomi Watts, with Red Wagon Entertainment’s Douglas Wick and Lucy Fisher producing.

Krieger wrote and directed “The Vicious Kind,” which premiered at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival and earned him numerous accolades, including the emerging filmmaker award at the Denver Film Festival and an Independent Spirit Award nomination for best screenplay. He then directed “Celeste and Jesse Forever,” which starred Andy Samberg and Rashida Jones.

He most recently helmed “Age of Adaline,” starring Blake Lively. Krieger just shot the pilot “Beyond” for ABC Family, which has been picked up to series, and is currently filming the Greg Berlanti pilot “Riverdale” for the CW.

He is repped by UTA and Anonymous Content.

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