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Will MORTAL INSTRUMENTS be the next book-to-movie box office hit?

Lily Collins and Jamie Campbell Bower as Clary and Jace

Lily Collins and Jamie Campbell Bower as Clary and Jace

After the successes of Harry Potter, Twilight and The Hunger Games at the box office, studios are searching for the next big properties that could replicate that big-screen success. Cassandra Clare's The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices have a huge following both domestically and internationally. There are a combined 22 million books in print between both series, and there is a one million first-print order for Clockwork Princess, out March 19. Both series are optioned for film by Constantin Film and Unique Features and The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, which has already generated a ton of hype, is headed to theaters on Aug. 23. So the question becomes, how does one replicate the success of past book-to-movie hits? USA Today examined the topic:

Lily Collins and Jamie Campbell Bower as Clary and Jace

But does having a host of teen readers guarantee a box-office hit?

“There’s no rigid formula that works, or else they’d be minting them, printing these movies out every two weeks. It’s really difficult to predict the next big thing,” says Keith Simanton, managing editor of IMDb. “But it’s worth even a chance of creating a franchise like Twilight.”

Simanton said that the success of a book-to-movie franchise depends on the core fan base.

“It’s imperative to have that core base fans to spread the word,” Simanton says. “But even that is sometimes not enough. What was missing with Beautiful Creatures? Could have been the casting. The trailer.”

Cassandra Clare sounded off on the topic.

“When you write for teens, you know you have to grab their attention quickly,” she says. “YA (young-adult) novels are plot-propelled. That makes them cinematic.”

Granted of all the book franchises vying for the big-screen success that Harry Potter, The Hunger Games and Twilight have all achieved, The Mortal Instruments seems to have the biggest core fan base.

Do you think The Mortal Instruments will be the next big thing in Hollywood?

About Alyssa (2790 Articles)
Owner of TMI Source. Journalist and teacher by day, fangirl by night. Alyssa is too obsessed with sports, television, books, superheroes, and Shadowhunters for her own good.

10 Comments on Will MORTAL INSTRUMENTS be the next book-to-movie box office hit?

  1. teamedwardjace // March 13, 2013 at 7:51 PM // Reply

    i think that the mortal instruments and id will do very well!

  2. Yes, TMI will be the next big franchise and I will explain why. TMI (unlike other books-to-movie projects) appeals to multiple audiences. Teen girls and adult women will love the Clare and Jace story, but teen boys and adult men will like the action that goes along with the shadowhunters. In addition, Screen Gems is being really smart about the promotions for the movie: releasing an early trailer, pictures of the cast, cast interviews on MTV, etc. All of these things months in advance to get the buzz generating. Of all the adaptations, I’d put my money on TMI.

  3. I am not a teen, actually a senior, and got involved in reading TMI from the granddaughter of a friend and both my friend and I were immediately hooked. Also read Infernal Devices and loved it as well. Looking forward to both last editions of the books. I am greatly looking forward to the movie. I thought because of these books I would like Beautiful Creatures, read the book and was very disappointed. Mr friend read Divergent and was disappointed. Had no desire to see Beautiful Creatures movie. I know other adults who have also read the TMI books, one who is a writer herself, and have fallen in love with them waiting anxiously for the movie. If they did a good job with the movie, as I really think they have, it should big the next franchise. My friend and I laugh about being the oldest people in the theater, but maybe not.

  4. I really think TMI can do it. It has so so much in it that if it doesn’t get teh rest of it in film form, I’ll be shocked.

  5. Absolutely, it will be the next big thing! And not just because I personally love it, but because it has multiple layers: drama, action, fantasy, multiple creatures, romance, and on and on… This is going to appeal to many walks of life.

  6. I hope it can but I was really disapointed with hunger games movie so we will see I guess tmi n id are my fav books so I hope the movie is a really big hit

  7. It’s up to us. We need to tell all our friends, organize groups to go to the movie, and see it multiple times and it’s very important to go see it on opening weekend. Also, like Izzy above, I am not a teenager, (but a mom of a teenager). Many of my friends of a similar age love this book series too. Hopefully the appeal of these books across age groups will help propel the success of the movies. I believe appeal across many age groups was part of the success of the Twilight series and the Hunger Games series.

  8. midnightrose434 // March 14, 2013 at 10:00 AM // Reply


    You are exactly right TMI has something for everyone, both men and women. I too, was never interested in Beautiful Creatures. And its sad to say (sorry to the fans of that book series) I wasn’t surprised that it flopped and flopped big time. Quite frankly I think that if a person showed the trailer for Beautiful Creatures and The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones to someone who hadn’t read either book, that person would most likely say that the TMI trailer looked more exciting…..because it is.

    When I read those set interviews on with one of the producers Robert Kulzer and he mentioned that Warner Bros. had given up the rights to TMI originally and then went with the, at least clear to me, not going to do well Beautiful Creatures it boggled my mind. Clearly WB is going to regret the day they gave up TMI. Oh well. Go Screen Gems/Constantin!! 🙂

  9. IrishShowhuntersAnonymous // March 14, 2013 at 10:54 AM // Reply

    It really is hard to judge what is going to be a hit and what isn’t. I think it’s important not to just jump on a band wagon and copy what has already been done. And that’s what happened with Beautiful Creatures, they tried to hard to recreate Twilight. When Twilight came out it was unique nobody had done anything like it before, a movie aimed a girls and women with a strong romantic core in a dark setting with a dark twist. Harry Potter and the Hunger Games were the same, they hadn’t been done before. The most important aspect I think though is casting, you need that chemistry between the leads, you need that passion and heat as well as a likeability that has us rooting for them. Whether you loved or hated Twilight you can’t deny the chemistry between Rob and Kristen they just had it, that coupled with Robs charisma throw in a love triangle and forbidden romance and they had a hit. Though we still have to see the chemistry between Lily and Jamie onscreen they are dating so there must be something there, Jamie is so likeable and charismatic and there is definitely nothing out there like TMI at the moment. So hopefully with the help of the fans we can really make it a happen.

  10. midnightrose434 // March 14, 2013 at 2:55 PM // Reply


    I agree with what you said. I was listening to a movie podcast about TMI:COB’s teaser trailer and the two guys mentioned that the movie had a Blade or Hellboy vibe and looked like a graphic novel.

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