Lovers of Cassandra Clare's "The Mortal Instruments" series were a bit shell-shocked to learn this weekend that Sony's Screen Gems decided to let go of its rights to adapt the film.
The movie was rumored to be heading into production this fall, with Lily Collins and Jamie Campbell Bower cast as leads. Scott Stewart ("Priest," "Legion") was slated to direct, and many predicted it'd be the next "big thing" behind "Harry Potter," "Twilight," and the forthcoming "The Hunger Games."
But is it really dead in the water?
As The Hollywood Reporter announced, "The Mortal Instruments" was dropped by Screen Gems and left in the hands of Constantin Film ("Pandorum," "The Three Musketeers"), which may or may not need financial assistance to go forth on the project. Scott Stewart, too, recused himself from the director's chair in exchange for Screen Gems' TV version of "Legion."
So, in one fell swoop, "The Mortal Instruments" seemingly lost its production company and its director out of nowhere.
However, the project might survive the upheaval.
Cassandra Clare took to Tumblr over the weekend to address the news, calling THR's report on the matter "a slightly bizarre (and weeeirdly outdated) version of events." According to her post, Screen Gems' involvement with production was negligible at best, and Constantin Films has always been the main company to lead the way on the adaptation. In other words, her opinion is that "[t]his really doesn’t make much of any difference at all except in who distributes it."
Clare assured that Lily Collins and Jamie Campbell Bower aren't going anywhere because of this news, that Constantin is going forth on casting another major character for the movie, and that the start date for production is still anticipated as August of this year.
Jamie Campbell Bower echoed her confidence on Twitter, saying "all is still good. Do not fear. X"
So, it seems that despite the news of Screen Gems dropping the project, Cassandra Clare thinks "The Mortal Instruments" is still staying on the tracks ... for now.