Any way you look at it, The Mortal Instruments: City Of Bones was not a hit. With a reported budget of $60 million and that same amount spent on advertising, the $80 million dollars or so it brought in at the worldwide box office doesn’t come even close to getting the modern day fantasy film to the break even point. But that is not stopping its producer Constantin Films from pressing ahead on an adaptation of the second book in Cassandra Clare’s series, City Of Ash.
Constantin was already in pre-production on the sequel in the lead up to the release of City Of Bones earlier this year, but everything was pou on hold when the film tanked at the box office. But Martin Moszkowicz, Constantin Film’s head of film and TV, has told the Hollywood Reporter that the studio has changed its mind and that work has restarted on the follow up.
The fan response, from the blogosphere and the thousands of mails we have received, has encouraged us to keep going. It’s been overwhelmingly positive, in contrast to some other YA titles.
Moskowicz stated that everything is being looked at to improve the new film’s performance over the previous one’s.
We are analyzing what we did wrong with the first film — particularly with the positioning and marketing — and what changes we have to make. We are working with a great group of people to reposition the franchise [for City of Ashes]… The readers of Mortal Instruments are older than you might think. That may have been one issue in our marketing, that we focused too much on a very young audience segment.
I only recently caught up with the film myself, and I have to admit that I found the screenplay to be more than a bit of a mess. Lots of running around disguised as strory progression, lots of things happening without any real explanation or context. I am sure that if I had read the book the film was based on it would have made more sense, but it shouldn’t have to work that way. Hopefully, the first thing that Constantin are looking at is the sequel’s screenplay.