No More Questions: Shailene Woodley from ‘The Divergent Series: Allegiant’

shailene woodley interview

Welcome to No More Questions, where I ask the stars you know and love everything you want to know and love.

I think we can all agree that an interview with Miles Teller would’ve been unpleasant and boring, so I disguised myself as Molly Ringwald’s agent and stood next to a Starbucks community board in Beverly Hills until Shailene Woodley just had to talk to me.

We sat down and discussed her new movie The Divergent Series: Allegiant based on the novel “Hunger Games” by Sapphire, as well as some other things you actually care about.

Note: No More Questions is satire. It does not reflect the actual views of Shailene Woodley, Jon Negroni, or anyone else mentioned in this interview. Some of the content in this interview comes from actual quotes by Shailene Woodley in other interviews. Seriously. 

JN: I have to admit something Shia LaWoodley. 

SW: …?

JN: I’ve never done a No More Questions interview with someone younger than me. I hope I don’t break the law here…

SW: We’re both adults, so there’s nothing to worry about.

JN: Hey, whoa, Shia. Are you hitting on me? Because—

SW: No.

JN: A lot of people don’t like you, but they have a hard time articulating why they don’t like you. Do you know why?

SW: Do I know why people can’t explain why they don’t like me? That’s what you’re asking?

JN: Apparently, both of us are.

SW: I suppose it’s my…

JN: …voice

SW: …acting prowess…

JN: (laughs) 

SW: …are we going to talk about the movie at some point?

JN: So Shaileancuisine, how has being the star of a young adult book franchise that most people hate changed your life? 

SW: I don’t feel like my life has changed at all.

JN: Not at all? Because your haircut begs to differ.

SW: I’ve changed a lot because I’ve grown in the last four years. But my values, my morals, what I stand for, hasn’t changed because of this movie. I feel blessed because I have more opportunities artistically.

JN: Are you saying Divergent is…art?

SW: (laughs) No, of course not. I just have the name recognition to do better work now.

JN: Now you can make those dollas! 

(we high five, but Shailene is clearly more into it than I am)

JN: It’s clear that no one takes Divergent seriously at this point. So why do you think celebrated actors like Naomi Watts, Octavia Spencer, Kate Winslet, and even Jeff Daniels keep showing up in these things?

SW: I have a few theories on this because it baffles me, too. Like first day on set, I said to Kate Winslet, “Why are you even here? It’s not like you started out as an extra on Degrassi.”

But then I looked over and saw Jai Courtney by craft services, and Miles Teller and I sort of looked at each other and in unison went, “Ohhhhhhhh.”

JN: But Jailene Woodley—er—Jai Courtney isn’t in this next movie…

SW: You’re welcome.

JN: Let’s just be honest Shirelene, you’re quite attractive. But not obviously attractive. Would you say that this has hurt or helped your career, disregarding The Spectacular Now?

SW: I’m glad you brought that up, because ever since The Secret Life of the American Teenager, I’ve had trouble looking at myself in the mirror. But for whatever reason, my boyfriends from other movies keep showing up in the same movie with me.

JN: You don’t seem weirded out by it. You…seem to like it.

SW: Wouldn’t you?

JN: (I look down at my shoes for some reason) What would you say is your worst movie? 

SW: I get this question a lot, but the answer always changes. Recently, I said Fault in Our Stars because I was having a conversation with Willem Dafoe and needed him to stop crashing on my couch. Before that, I told everyone The Descendents so Willem Dafoe would get jealous.

JN: Yes, I’ve read on Reddit that it’s a great couch. What was your first thought of me? 

SW: Like, as a person?

JN: Little bit of this, little bit of that.

SW: Well, the eyeliner wasn’t necessary. I’ve never seen Molly’s agent wear it.

JN: I wanted you to think I was unpredictable.

SW: I don’t.

JN: What gives you the right to judge me? 

SW: I make more money than you, for one thing.

JN: True, but I’ve been on fewer garbage TV shows.


JN: What? Is that Miles Teller I see?

(Miles Teller walks in)

MT: Hey guys, what’s relevant?

JN: Shaimean-to-Jon was just talking about how her career has been mostly terrible.

MT: True, true.

SW: Miles…

MT: I know, I know. I’ll be off your couch soon. J.K. and I—

SW: He’s not going to let you use his shower again. It’s been two years.


JN: I’m sensing a lot of tension here, guys. Sparks between your characters in Allegiant? Might as well go full Hunger Games at this point. 

SW: No love triangles, or I walk. That’s in the contract.

(Miles shakes his head at this obvious bluff).

JN: Speaking of better franchises, a lot of people — mostly me — like to compare movies to famous soda brands. Between Divergent and Hunger Games, which of you is Coke and which is Diet Coke?

MT: (barely holding in laughter) Is Pepsi OK?

(Miles and I start laughing uncontrollably)

SW: Well, Hunger Games should be Diet Coke right? Because they’re already hungry?

(Miles and I stop laughing and just stare at her)

JN: Have you…seen Hunger Games?

SW: OK, um. You guys should know. I’ve never watched a movie before. Not even a TV show.

(Miles and I look at each other)

In Unison: Ohhhhhhhhhh. /MT: that explains it.

The Divergent Series: Allegiant opens worldwide on March 18, 2016.

I’m Jon and thanks for reading this. You can subscribe to my posts by clicking “Follow” in the right sidebar. Or just say hey on Twitter! @JonNegroni



‘Fantastic Four’ Review — Doomed Expectations

fantastic four review

Fantastic Four feels more like the pilot to a promising TV series than an actual movie. That’s not a really a bad thing, but it’s certainly a deal breaker for most critics and FF fans.

We could talk all day about the troubled production this film has gone through, the obvious reshoots, and how director Josh Trank was fired halfway through and is pretty bitter about it (enough to denounce the film via Twitter before it even came out).

The obvious end of Trank’s career aside, this is a movie that is best enjoyed by audiences who want something a little more fresh from their superheroes. Fantastic Four is a welcome surprise for anyone who thought this year’s Avengers: Age of Ultron was a little overstuffed and overly self-aware. Instead of focusing on spectacle, FF focuses on characters coming of age in a science fiction backdrop.

Weirdly, superpowers are more of an afterthought.

FF is about a group of loners who build a teleportation machine that can take them to a “new dimension.” The journey alters and grants them powers, of which the military is anxious to capitalize on (it makes more sense than the army wanting to weaponize raptors).

fantastic four review

Most of the film is that first part of the story, in which we meet each character and get to know their origins and what motivates them. For this reason, I really enjoyed the first half of the film. It’s tightly written, the eventual villain has a decent arc, and I had fun watching these characters interact in a story that was obviously building up to something great. Only some of it was a bit eye-rolling (the science fair ex machina, for example).

Unfortunately, post-production rewrites sort of gutted the weight of the movie by essentially skipping over the second act. We jump from Act 1 (getting the powers) to Act III (using the powers for one, final showdown). There’s no real buildup or failure/success cycle you’ll find in a good story.

We don’t even get to see how these characters feel about getting superpowers because of a strange time skip. This is ironic considering Trank’s last movie, Chronicle, almost exclusively focused on the fun part of figuring out what it would be like to have superpowers.

TV pilots are typically guilty of these rushed plots. And sure, it all leads toward something that could be great in the future. But the ending is instead too one note to feel earned.

fantastic four review

My theory is that the second act had to be streamlined because it would have felt too familiar. The 2005 Fantastic Four movie already did the “getting our powers and learning how to use them” thing, so this reboot attempted to do something different with these frankly unpopular characters. I can easily see FOX discussing how fans were tired of the incessant Spider-Man reboots repeating the same story and trying to come up with a unique solution for this.

I appreciate the gesture, but it could have been much better executed.

The effects aren’t very memorable, and the action scenes were overall unimpressive. I did enjoy the look and brutality of the Thing, played by Jamie Bell. And my favorite scene (that I wish they extended) was the fight between Reed Richards and his pursuers. Pitting Reed against his future teammates (not just the Thing) would have been a great way to demonstrate how great these powers are. Instead, the movie decided to just tell us because it was getting too long.

I will say that with the exception of Reed and Doom, the look of these characters was good, even great (Human Torch was spot on). Kate Mara’s Sue Storm went the safe route and Miles Teller had way too many scenes where he needed a shave, for example.

fantastic four review

Doom himself does get a chilling scene straight out of a horror flick that is quickly undercut by how goofy he looks, but this can all be compartmentalized into a rushed third act that doesn’t force you to dwell on his character design anyway.


This movie will be very polarizing for years to come. Fans who enjoyed enough of the movie to forgive some of its blatant flaws will be met by others who were immediately turned off to the third act. A great example is Iron Man 3, another superhero film I thoroughly enjoyed despite immense backlash for its “twist.”

It’s not saying much, but I consider this the best of the Fantastic Four movies (of which there’s now four). To be fair, I abhor the 2005 and 2007 film. Comparisons aside, FF on its own is something I want to see more of. It’s a mess of a film that could be leading to something superb down the line, though I doubt it will ever get the chance under the weight of its abnormal expectations.

Grade: C+ 

fantastic four review

Extra Credits:

  • I really like how they gave Ben Grimm the idea for “it’s clobbering time.” And it was fun to see more substance and backstory come into play for Johnny Storm, who was overly silly in the last two of these movies.
  • There’s nothing after the credits, and I don’t think FOX is ready to hint at any crossovers with their X-Men and Deadpool movies unless FF is received well. I think this is fine because FF doesn’t seem to fit in a world where mutants live.
  • No Stan Lee cameo. He approved of the Human Torch being cast as an African American, but that wasn’t necessarily a recommendation for the film. He probably wants FF to be folded into the Marvel Cinematic Universe at this point.
  • Look, I get that it would be cool to have FF in the MCU. It would also be cool to have X-Men and Deadpool in the MCU. But the fact is that FOX bought these rights when Marvel was on the outs. They deserve to get a return on their investment, especially since their bailing out of Marvel two decades ago pretty much led to the sacred cow cinematic universe you seem to like so much.

Fantastic Four was directed and written by Josh Trank. It was also written by Simon Kinberg and Jeremy Slater. It stars Miles Teller as Reed Richards, Michael B. Jordan as Johnny Storm, Kate Mara as Sue Storm, Jamie Bell as Ben Grimm, Toby Kebbell as Victor von Doom, and Reg E. Cathey as Franklin Storm.


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