7 Reasons I’m Still Upset ‘The Mortal Instruments’ Movies Were Never Finished

You know what keeps me up at night? The fact we only got one ‘The Mortal Instruments’ movies. Here’s all the reasons I’m still upset about it (as we all are).

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2013 may have been a long time ago, but some wounds never heal. One of those wounds being the unfinished The Mortal Instruments adaptations we never got to see. Sure–I’m aware the first movie wasn’t up to par but was anything in 2013?

If you’re wanting to see this fantasy series on-screen in a different way, you could try the TV show that aired on Freeform, but nothing hits quite like a movie. I’m a big movie gal and the premiere of The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones in August 2013 was a big highlight for me. With a sequel already in discussion, the series was set to be a huge hit. However, it never made it past movie one. So, today we get to explore seven reasons why I am still deeply upset they never finished The Mortal Instruments movies.

1. Jamie Campbell Bower as Jace Wayland

The Mortal Instrument movie adaptation Jace Wayland
cr. Glamour UK / Rex Features
Jamie Campbell Bower as Jace Wayland
cr. Glamour UK / Rex Features

This is number one and will always be number one on why I’m still upset they didn’t finish these movies. Jamie Campbell Bower IS Jace Wayland. You can’t tell me that while reading the books, this isn’t the exact man you pictured. And with his rune tattoos? Come on. He even looks like the man on the cover of the books.

2. The First Movie Never Does Well… But So What?

Jace and Clary on the back of a motorcycle in The Mortal Instruments
cr. Glamour UK / Rex Features

We all remember the Twilight Saga fiasco with that first movie, but it kept going! And was incredible! You should Saga it up at least once a year for your mental health. The Mortal Instruments series should’ve kept going regardless of how movie one did and I will die on that hill. It’s like doing anything–you make the first one, see what works and doesn’t work, then you go for round two making it even better!

3. There’s Literally TONS of Books in the Series

City of Bones Book one cover
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City of Ashes book two book cover
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city of glass book three book cover
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city of fallen angels book four book cover
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city of lost souls book five book cover
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city of heavenly fire book six book cover
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We won’t even include the prequel in this either, because that comes later. The Mortal Instruments series consists of so many books–six to be exact. If you’ve read the entire series (go do it now if you haven’t), you know just how much happens and how amazing it would’ve been to see on the big screen.

4. The Second Movie Was Set to Hit Production…

City of Bones movie-still Clary and Jace
cr. Variety

Finding this little piece of information out was the cherry on top to my already broken heart. The Mortal Instruments: City of Ashes was set to hit production in the fall of 2013, according to Variety, after its August release. Everyone was set to return in the second film despite how unsuccessful the first film was. Sadly, for us, production continued to delay and they ended up canceling the sequel.

5. The Casting Was PERFECT

Main character cast in the mortal instruments movie adaptation
cr. Glamour UK / Rex Features

I don’t even need to elaborate on this. Look at them! It is just such good casting. I am aware that I could possibly have a small connection to the character casting since it was the first adaptation. But how could I not?!

Speaking of good casting–here are my picks of spot on book to screen casting you have to see. Yes, Jace Wayland made the list.

6. They Could’ve Tried Their Luck at the Prequel Books

Clockwork Angel book one cover
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Clockwork Prince book two cover
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Clockwork Princess book three cover
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This prequel series is so good. I cannot stress this enough. No one can do Shadowhunters like Cassandra Clare. Known as The Infernal Devices trilogy, this prequel series follows orphaned Tessa Grey as she ventures to London in 1878 after finding out she has the power to shapeshift. This was definitely when I fell in love with the 1800s, no doubt about it.

You will recognize some familiar names in the series with characters like William Herondale, James Carstairs, Theresa “Tessa” Gray, and others. It also features Magnus Bane, Camille Belcourt, and Woolsey Scott who appear in The Mortal Instruments. You can read the two series in any order, but publication order is best. The first book released in 2010.

7. Now There’s a TV Show? With Different Casting?

shadow hunter tv series still
cr. ScreenRant

On the one hand, good for the talented people cast in this show, because I will admit, it is good. They did a great job portraying the characters. However, after connecting the book to the characters cast in the first movie adaptation, it’s so hard to see different people play them. You know what I mean? I started the show while in Greece and it was good when compared to the book storyline. I’ll just never be able to move on from the movies. Sadly the show was canceled after season three, but that’s still a good amount of episodes to binge.

While we may never get another movie with Jamie Campbell Bower and Lily Collins as Shadowhunters, there are so many books we can add to our TBR to get our other-worldly fix as well as the TV show. Cassandra Clare’s most recent novel, Chain of Thorns, is a Shadowhunter novel that released January 2023 and is the last book in The Last Hours trilogy.

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