Last month, we reported that Constantin Film has halted production on The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones sequel The Mortal Instruments: City of Ashes, after the first film's disappointing results at the box office. Today, we have word that the studio is moving forward on the follow-up, with production to resume in 2014.
The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones earned just over $31 million in its domestic run, taking in $49 million internationally for an $80 million worldwide total. While the movie was budgeted at just $60 million, the studio pumped an estimated $60 million into marketing the fantasy adaptation. The film starred Lily Collins as Clary Fray, who learns she comes from a long line of Shadowhunters, tasked with killing demons and other supernatural creatures.
Nevertheless, Constantin's Martin Moszkowicz revealed that the overwhelmingly positive fan response is what made them move forward with the young adult adaptation.
"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."
He added that the studio is analyzing problems with the original, while admitting that they left out the franchise's older readers in their marketing, which primarily catered to teenagers.
"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."
We also reported in July that the franchise is getting an extra dose of star power, with Sigourney Weaver signing on to play the leader of the Shadowhunters, who seeks revenge for the murder of her son. Harald Zwart is returning to direct from a screenplay by Jessica Postigo, based on Cassandra Clare's second novel in her fantasy series. Stars Lily Collins, Jamie Campbell Bower and Aidan Turner are expected to reprise their roles in the follow-up.