#SDCC 2013: Exclusive - Kevin Zegers Talks The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, the Upcoming Sequel and More
For those of you younger fans out there, one movie that may be right up your alley is the upcoming big screen adaptation of Cassandra Clare's dark fantasy adventure tale The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones.
City of Bones arrives in theaters August 21st and stars Lily Collins, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Kevin Durand, Lena Headey, Kevin Zegers and Aidan Turner. In the film, Zegers stars as one of the story's Shadowhunters who must work alongside a young woman (Collins) in order to protect our world against demons threatening to invade and while at SDCC 2013, we spoke to Zegers about his involvement in the project, what fans can expect and more on the upcoming sequel, City of Ashes, which is set to start filming very soon.
Read on for the highlights from our exclusive interview with Zegers below.
Dread Central: This seems like an exciting world to be part of and something you haven't really ever done before. Was that part of the appeal to you for taking on Mortal Instruments?
Kevin Zegers: Oh yeah; this was something totally different for me. And so I read the script and found that I really loved this character. The world was something I thought was super-cool and I knew the books had a lot of fans but I was just hooked in by my character most of all. He was just really interesting; his back story and where he is going throughout these stories is all pretty complicated and challenging which I thought was great. So when I met with Harold and we were able to sit down and talk about it, we were on the same page in a lot of ways and I liked his ideas for my character that it really felt like a small movie being made on a big scale. It felt like when we were making this that we were making an actor's movie that just happened to have all this crazy stuff happening around them. And that's exactly what I was looking for.
Dread Central: For the fans out there, can you talk about how much are we going to see from the books make it to the big screen for the movie?
Kevin Zegers: Because they're two different kinds of formats, if we were to shoot everything in the book it would have ended up being like a seven hour movie. But I watched the movie a couple of weeks ago and I have to say that it rang so true to the characters, the story and the essence of the book. What everyone loves about these books is very much at the front and center of this film. That was sort of our main focus, every minute detail cannot be attended to or otherwise things get so convoluted, so it became important to all of us to tell this story in a way that the people who only watch the movie will have a connection to the material in the very same way people who love the books will.
And it’s tricky and hard because along the way you have to make certain sacrifices in order to serve other aspects of the story which is always hard. It's not an easy thing to balance but Harold did it brilliantly. We just wanted to make a great film and I think we did.
Dread Central: You mentioned this being more of an actor's movie; can you talk a bit about how you guys approached that while balancing out a story that also has a lot of visuals driving it as well?
Kevin Zegers: Well I think that when I was approached to do this, I realized the incredible amount of talent they were assembling so I knew this wasn't going to be something cookie cutter. This is a very specific cast that isn't anything you'd necessarily be expecting either which I thought was great. Everyone across the board was someone I really wanted to work with and I thought it was great that they went with a cast who were all right for the role, not necessarily a guy who just happened to be coming off a hot Chanel campaign (laughs). It doesn't always happen that way and I think that's why when we were filming that we were able to bring these characters to life in the way that Harold had envisioned.
One of the reasons I think it was so easy for me to play Alec is because there was so much to this character that was similar to myself and when you can pull parts of yourself into a role and not have to fight to find those pieces, it only helps your performance feel more natural.
Dread Central: How was it collaborating with Harold; what do you think it was that he specifically brought to the table for this movie?
Kevin Zegers: Well, he's definitely very visually adept as a filmmaker so I think because he is so good at that, he was really able to focus on telling a story. He was able to give a lot of attention to these characters because handling things like the effects, the stunts, the visuals comes easy for him so he could put that energy into the characters which is really important.
It's especially important because there are other books so there also all of that to keep in mind too; in fact, we're about to go and start shooting the sequel City of Ashes in about a month and a half. And so the only way that audiences are going to want to come back and watch that movie is if they're willing to follow these characters on this journey again after the story we present to them in the first film. Otherwise, you're just making a movie filled with goblins and werewolves and aren't giving audiences a reason to care or a reason to want to come out and watch the sequel or care about what happens to these characters.
The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones is an adaptation of Cassandra Clare’s young adult fantasy novel and has a release date of August 21, 2013.
Kevin Durand, Robert Maillet, Elyas M'Barek, Lily Collins, Robert Sheehan, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Jemima West, Kevin Zegers, Lena Headey, Jared Harris, Godfrey Gao, and Jamie Campbell Bower star in the film helmed by Harald Zwart. Jessica Postigo and I. Marlene King wrote the script.
Set in contemporary New York City, a seemingly ordinary teenager, Clary Fray (Lily Collins), discovers she is the descendant of a line of Shadowhunters, a secret cadre of young half-angel warriors locked in an ancient battle to protect our world from demons. After the disappearance of her mother (Lena Headey), Clary must join forces with a group of Shadowhunters, who introduce her to a dangerous alternate New York called Downworld, filled with demons, warlocks, vampires, werewolves, and other deadly creatures. Based on the worldwide best-selling book series.
For more info visit the official The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones website, "like" The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones on Facebook, and follow The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones on Twitter (@MortalMovie).
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