[Alert! Alert! Spoilers ahead!]
There’s a pretty huge twist at the end of The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. (Yes, people who have read the books, that thing.) When watching the movie, I noticed that while the story was the same as in the book, the characters’ reaction to the twist was different — more nuanced and emotional, if you will. Turns out stars Lily Collins and Jamie Campbell Bower had a hand in making that change, quite literally. They rewrote it.
As much as we’re pleased to see every single glimpse we can of The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones movie shoot — coffee shop Java Jones has come to life! Clary runs through the streets, probably after getting her mom’s frantic phone call! Jace wears a hoodie! Simon looks confused and sweet in his huge glasses! — we’re even more thrilled to hear reports about how the fans are being treated in Toronto. Judging by the tweets, Tumblrs and reports on TMISource.com from the lucky Canadians stalking the set, Rob Sheehan (Simon), Lily Collins (Clary) and Jamie Campbell Bower (Jace) have been smiling and waving at them for the past three days, and Lily and Rob have stopped many times to sign copies of their books. The movie’s publicist has let them photograph the shoot a bunch (though at times they asked them to wait until later to pub them), and the screenwriter even paused to chat. This is all welcome news for a fandom that’s been used to being in touch with author Cassandra Clare practically 24/7 as she simultaneously tweets and writes.
In other TMI news, it was announced early this morning that German star Elyas M’Barek was cast as a “vampire lieutenant” in the movie, though definitely not New York vampire leader Raphael, and Harry Van Gorkum will play werewolf Alaric.
Here’s our gloriously growing gallery of set pics, courtesy of both pros and fans:
[Photos: Tumblr, Twitter, Splash News Online]
Part of me is demon green with jealousy right now as I check out pictures from day one on the set of The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones. If they were shooting where the movie takes place, I would be playing hookie and watching Lily Collins and Jamie Campbell Bower blocks away from my own home in Park Slope, Brooklyn. But yeah, I get it, New York is expensive to shoot in, so I guess most of the time, Toronto will be stepping in for the role of my — and Simon Lewis and Clary Fray’s — ‘hood. I will instead be very happy for the fans up north who are getting glimpses of Bower, sporting his brand new Shadowhunter runes (those tattoos on his chest, for the uninitiated), Collins with her newly died red tresses, Robert Sheehan being generally adorable and Simon-like, and Jemima West (Isabelle) and Kevin Zegers (Alec) looking appropriately done up in black leather..
One fan with the Twitter handle @Shadowhunting has been sharing her pics from the set. Between her efforts and those of the paparazzi on set — who are earning some fierce scowls from Lily and Jamie — I almost feel like I’m there. I am so not a good enough fan to remember what those runes on Jace’s chest are for, so if anyone knows, please fill me in. I am a good enough fan, though, that I’m refreshing my photo sites every five minutes to see if there are any other hints about which scenes they’re shooting first. The cafe, maybe? Their encounter with Madame Dorothea/Abbadon?
The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones isn’t due in theaters until August 2013, so those of you who have no idea why I’m so excited, you have plenty of time to catch up on Cassandra Clare’s utterly addictive books.
[Photos: Splash News Online]
Much as we thought Jamie Campbell Bower and Bonnie Wright were an adorable couple before their split last month, we must admit to squeeing with delight when we saw these photos of Jamie with his Mortal Instruments co-star Lily Collins in Toronto yesterday. According to the Daily Mail, the two arrived in town for pre-production meetings for City of Bones, the first movie based on Cassandra Clare‘s gorgeous urban-demon-hunter YA series. And you don’t have to be an expert in body language to read these pics as serious flirt-town. She touches her hair as they chat at an outdoor table. She pats his hand as they walk. He leans into her as he says something funny. They laugh hysterically at each other’s jokes.
We’re not shy about our vampire obsession around here. And even as angels and werewolves and dystopian battlefields take over the screens and bookshelves, it doesn’t look like sexy bloodsuckers are going anywhere. Sure, they experience a bit of boom and bust, but a look back at the last 100 years in pop culture proves their undying staying power. In 2011, our blood was stirred by a nice crop of undead seducers, from Eric and Bill on True Blood to Damon and Stefan on The Vampire Diaries to the entire morally upstanding Cullen family. There were others who leapt from the pages of books whose racy covers we sometimes had to keep hidden — Bloodlines, the spinoff of YA series Vampire Academy, made its debut; Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress series is still going strong, and in City of Fallen Angels, the latest from Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series, vampire Simon went from best friend to hot commodity. There were even a couple of “nonfiction” vamps who made it onto our 2011 list.
Before you check out our 25 faves, watch who such celebrity vampire experts as True Blood’s Joe Manganiello and Twilight’s Elizabeth Reaser, and non-experts like Andrew W.K., Robin Thicke and Questlove would nominate for Vampire of the Year. Because we just declared that a thing.
Now, take a look at our top 25, vote on your faves and let us know in the comments if we missed any of your favorites.
In her first series, The Mortal Instruments, Cassandra Clare combined the comfortably familiar settings of Brooklyn and Manhattan with the underground universe of demons, Shadowhunters, vampires, fairies and warlocks. But for the prequel trilogy, The Infernal Devices, she must have felt that was too easy. The first two books, Clockwork Angel and Clockwork Prince (which came out last week), take place in Victorian London. Orphaned American shapeshifter Tessa Gray and the demon-killing Shadowhunters that take her in are all at the mercy of a rapidly changing world, where scientific advances can be amazing and deadly, and where propriety and gender roles are talked about much more than they’re actually followed.
“The Victorians were much less hung up and repressed than we think of them as,” Clare told TheFABlife of what she discovered while researching the book. “I had always thought of them with these apocryphal stories that they couldn’t say ‘arm’ or ‘leg’ in public and that they covered their piano legs because they were supposed to be naughty. This was all total crap apparently. None of that stuff ever happened. The books of the time period that were really popular are shocking. They were full of sex and violence and betrayal and adultery and sin.”
In Clockwork Prince, Tessa is not only trying to help find and stop the man who seeks to take over the city with an army of clockwork soldiers, she’s also trying to find out the workings of her own heart, torn between tempestuous, deep-dark-secret-holding Will and gentle, probably-dying Jem. And by “trying to find out,” we mean “making out” in some pretty hot and heavy scenes.
It’s been more than six months since Jamie Campbell Bower was announced to play Jace, opposite Lily Collins’ Clary, in City of Bones, the first movie adaptation of Cassandra Clare‘s The Mortal Instruments series. After that, there seemed to be no forward progress in bringing demon-killing Shadowhunters to the big screen. What gives? Clare herself stopped by the VH1 offices last week while promoting Clockwork Prince, book two in Mortal Instruments prequel series The Infernal Devices, and gave us a very good reason for the movie’s delay: The original script didn’t stay true to the books.
“Nobody could settle on a script that they liked, and so there was a lot of back-and-forthing, and finally, it came down from the head of the studio [Screen Gems] that she wanted the script rewritten,” Cassie told TheFABlife. “She didn’t feel like it stuck close enough to the book. I kind of agreed with her. There were some characters that were taken out and things that were switched around, and it was very different from City of Bones.”
They brought Pretty Little Liars screenwriter Marlene King onboard to rewrite the whole darn thing, bringing back more of Clare’s characters and giving it a “great teen voice,” Clare said.
Of course, no screenplay is going to match the book word-for-word, so we wondered what was most important to Clare as she sees her books adapted. “I really want them to stay true to the relationships between the characters,” she explained. “Jace’s relationship to his adoptive family was really important. I feel like the whole twist with Jace and Clary and their relationship was really important and guides the next two books, and you can’t really take it out. It’s so taboo at the same time, but they’re just going with it. That’s what makes these books.”
When the first images from Young Adult surfaced on the Web earlier this year, showing Charlize Theron looking bedraggled in her sweats and Mickey Mouse shirt, clutching a Pomeranian in a carrier and a Victoria’s Secret bag, several young adult authors I know took to Twitter immediately. They seemed torn between being excited about the existence of a movie about their profession, especially one written by Diablo Cody and directed by Jason Reitman, and slightly horrified by the idea of being depicted as ladies who can’t be bothered to brush their hair and put on a decent pair of pants before leaving the house. And then when they learned Charlize’s character, Mavis Gary, is kind of a crazy stalker who can’t let go of her high school years, they were a bit worried.
“I watched [the trailer], and I was like, ‘Oh, this is going to give my profession a bad name!” Mortal Instruments series author Cassandra Clare told TheFABlife last week. At the same time, she added, “I really want to see it, because when will there be another movie about a young adult author?”
But Cody, who calls herself “the Sweet Valley superfan of all time” and is writing an upcoming adaptation of Sweet Valley High, is pretty sure there won’t be a huge outcry from the YA author community. “Mavis is one of a kind. I don’t think it’s an indictment of young adult authors as a group. It’s just this one lady is a little bit off-kilter,” she assured us at the movie’s New York premiere. And though she previously only knew Sweet Valley creator Francine Pascal, “since this movie has been screening, I have met some [YA authors] that have come out of the woodwork, and they are all into the movie, so I’m glad.”