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Cassandra Clare reiterates her lack of control over ‘THE MORTAL INSTRUMENTS: CITY OF BONES’


As an author when you option your book to a studio that’s about the only control you have when it comes to its film adaptation. From the get-go, Cassandra Clare has been clear that she had no final say in the adaptation process. Sure, they asked her for suggestions, but that doesn’t mean they used them all or that she had control over the movie.

We’ll let Cassie explain (via her Tumblr):

I’ve always said I didn’t have ultimate control over this movie. (I said it on my website, and here, seven months ago and  a year ago : “When you give over your movie rights you have to accept that decisions about how to adapt your books will be made without you. ) I clarified my position and influence re: the movie here a month ago: : ’The producers and director and production designer were all nice enough to come to me to consult about various things. I gave my opinion. Sometimes they took it. Sometimes they didn’t take it. Sometimes they took part of it but not the rest. Some things I was never asked about and was as surprised as everyone else to see.”

Interestingly, even being on set doesn’t change that – about 60% of what I saw filmed, including a ton of location shooting in ‘Idris’ and flashbacks, didn’t make it in — I hope it’s on the DVD because I think you guys would like it. None of that is a criticism of the movie — but often if you have questions about why things were changed, or when or how, I won’t know the answer, because I don’t know either. I just hope you do know that whenever I was asked for input, I gave it with what I thought you guys would want in the forefront of my mind.

In the end, a film is an interpretation: it’s the director’s vision of a book. If you don’t like it, you’re not a bad fan. If you do like it you’re not a bad fan. If you have a ton of strong opinions well, you’re a fan. 🙂 It’s the nature of the beast. The books will always be the books and nothing changes that.

It’s interesting to read that they filmed scenes in Idris that didn’t make it into the movie, but we sure hope they make it on the DVD as extras!

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About Alyssa Barbieri (2801 Articles)
Alyssa is the Managing Editor for Bears Wire. You can reach her at or follow her on Twitter @AlyssaBarbieri

19 Comments on Cassandra Clare reiterates her lack of control over ‘THE MORTAL INSTRUMENTS: CITY OF BONES’

  1. Ooh Idris scenes!!

  2. I’m a fan of the books. I loved the first 2/3 of the movie but didn’t like the way Hollywood changed the end. It’s been a week since I went and I think I’ll go again. This time I know it’s not the same as the book and I think I will enjoy it. I’m looking forward to see the movie -City of Ashes but mostly I can hardly wait to read Heavenly Fire!!!

  3. Oh cool would love to see that on the extras!

  4. My best friend’s only complain, “Why isn’t Jace an asshole?!” xD Funniest thing ever I swear

  5. i can’t wait for the extras on dvd! also i have already been two times, and i liked it more for the first time couse i was so excited that i didn’t saw all that changes. i just liked the movie. but for the scecond time i went there but in my mind i was compareing it to the books. i think(well, at least for me) it’s better to watch it like something diffrent and don’t focuse so much on comparisons. than when you seperate it – it’s really a fun movie:) and godfrey is soo charming that i think i’ll go third time just for him:P

  6. so i finally got a chance to see it! it was entertaining, but i really didnt’t like it as huge fan of the books; way too many changes for me, and it just felt very rushed. I wanted to like it soooo bad, but couldn’t get into it 😦 hopefully city of ashes will be wayyy better 🙂 and i can’t wait for city of heavenly fire, my OTP (Malec!!) MUST get back together!!!!!:D

  7. You help me out a lot by reading that well said cassie

  8. Of course Hollywood will try to make the movie Loveable by cutting things that might get to people skin but cutting those things were kind of a mistake cause people will se the movie like another YA Movie franchise out there and not like an unique that the books shows…. i expect to COA is alot better cause that is my favorite Book of all 5 and cant wait to see it

  9. ya there were changes but like cassie said its an interpretation. i agree that it wasnt as great as the books but it still tells the story. by the way, why didnt they go to renwicks.

  10. I just want this message out in case I forget to do it.
    Dear Cast and production team of Mortal Instruments and Cassandra I just would really like to thank you all again for your endless dedication and selfless attitude and unbelievable kindness that you have delivered to our fan base whether it be to sign a few books, visit across the country or showing up at premieres, and putting your A game on in the movie. You are some of the most amazing people in the world, I think Hollywood and all i should be lucky to have you the world is definately a better place because of you in it. 🙂

  11. teamedwardjace // September 1, 2013 at 1:19 PM // Reply

    So It was faithful but the adaption also has to do with script would love to see stuff on DVD perhaps they’ll give Cassie more control for the next movies and jace was a jerk at tones lol but a loveable one. Also to anyone who said Cassie jumped ship she didn’t. She was just repeating what she said a year ago

  12. I hope they will include all the bonus stuff on the DVD 🙂 I know I am definitely picking that up!

  13. RuthAnn Breza // September 2, 2013 at 6:06 PM // Reply

    Did the producer or director read the book. I understand a few changes might occur from book to movie….but the whole movie was a hot mess. The first part completely out of order; Luke was down played too much; all the back story cut out. The Circle was barely mentioned if it was at all. The story line was completely changed. Doubt I will see any more movies. I’ll just stick with the books

  14. Just blaming the things you didn’t like on “Hollywood”. The changes were made to make the movie more appealing for other audiences and, probably, for budget reasons.

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