Wednesday, 22 August 2012


Hello, hello, hello, Dear Readers! A thousand apologies for skipping out on you yesterday - there was a problem with my dad's treatment and we ended up having to call in one of the specialist district nurses who manages dialysis. By the time she was able to get to us, and sort us out, and my dad's dialysis was finished, it was afternoon already and I just needed to read some Jane Austen and fall into a temporary coma (which I duly did).

But in the end it turned out for the best, because one of the things that I wanted to talk about was the emergence of set photos from the shooting of the City of Bones movie that's literally just started filming in Toronto. And overnight (different timezones and all) even more fantastic images have become available, so now I have more to talk about.

You guys already know that I am a huge Cassie Clare fan (remember my interview with her, here?) and that I've read all her books. But what I might not have mentioned before is that I have a complete fascination with movie adaptions of books. I'm borderline obsessed. I find the process by which books are adapted into a visual medium so interesting that I will buy DVDs of movies that I'm not even interested in seeing (like, for instance, Twilight: New Moon and Twilight: Eclipse) so that I can watch the DVD special features. I'm not interested in the screen-writing so much as the development of literary characters into movie ones - their costumes, make-up, hair - and settings - building soundstages, scouting locations - and tone - cinematography, score. Basically, I'm a big old geek about it.

Obviously this means that when films based on books I really love come out, I go into Ultra-Squee-Mode. I freaked out over the LotR films and the Harry Potter films, and now I am freaking out over City of Bones even more because we're getting all these sneak peeks of a kind we never did on other other, hush hush, closed set type films.

So I'm not going to repost all the pictures here because that would be a huuuge post; there are far too many. But what want to do - because I haven't really seen much of it online - is to look at some of the images and dissect what is going on and why I'm so thrilled. All of these pictures come from this amazing site called TMI Source and there are literally DOZENS of photos there, so if you're interested at all (and if you've made it this far into this post you probably are) head over there and have a look.

First, the picture that started the Ultra-Squee fire burning in my breast - the very first image of Jamie Campbell-Bowers as Jace.

There have been so many doubts expressed about whether JCB was big enough, masculine enough, handsome enough (etc. etc.) to play Jace, and I'm sure some people will continue to b*tch right to their graves that Alex Pettyfer didn't get the role (even though he had the chance and actually turned it down and also doesn't look anything like a teenager anymore).

But this image set my doubts completely at rest because, no, JCB doesn't look like a huge muscle-bound hulk but what he does look like? Is a fighter. And I know fighters - I can tell them at a glance because for many years those are the guys I avoided like the plague. He's lithe, he's tough, and he's got a look that says 'Mess with me if you want. It's your funeral. Literally'. I love it. I admit that I had a slightly different idea in my head of Shadowhunter Gear; I got the impression that it was more formal, almost like a uniform. But heck, it's black and form-fitting and it definitely looks like something you could do a roundhouse kick in without splitting your seams. I also love the Morgenstern ring there on his finger. Seraph blades = also FTW.

But look! What's that going on behind Jamie? Two women both ALSO leatherclad and with the look of badasses??? Can we see more?

Clary and Isabelle and Alec! Whaaa! The first image shows us Clary's gorgeous red hair, and I'm so delighted because all the images of Lily Collins until now - even after she arrived in Canada for pre-production - have shown really dark tresses, almost black. I was a little worried that they'd buy into this trend of brunette heroines (ala Twilight, The Vampire Diaries, The Hunger Games) and try to fob us off with a few auburn highlights. But I needn't have been concerned. They have kept the tone fairly dark, but added the most beautiful vivid red shade over the top. It suits her really well and I adore the contrast with her pale skin. It's *so* Clary Fray. 

Then under that we've got Isabelle, who is one of my favourite characters, in a sleek, long ponytail and huge heels (so true to character) and Alec, looking extremely buff. I think the fact that his Shadowhunting gear is sleeve-less is a bit... I don't know, it seems like they're distinguishing him very strongly from Jace here and giving him a slightly S&M look with the gloves. I'm not entirely sure that's true to the book, since Alec is very introverted and doesn't strike me as the type to chose a bicep-flashing outfit. Alec is also gay, and this is the sort of look you *might* see in a guy who was heading out to a gay club; my problem is that Alec is also closeted and terrified of anyone finding out about his sexuality. So it's a bit incongruous. But I'm willing to withhold judgement for now.

If you look behind those two, you get a tell-tale flash of red hair which makes you realise that Clary is still with them - and wearing an extremely UN-CLARY sort of outfit, with more huge heels and what look like the tightest black trousers EVER. What's going on there?

Well, apparently this scene was one where all the Shadowhunters (and Clary) march down the street together and head up to the building that they're using for Clary and Jocelyn's house. A boy (described as 'geeky') bumps into Clary and says 'Wow, Clary you look - uh - different...' Which means that this is the scene where Clary borrows clothes from Isabelle before heading out from the Institute with the gang to see Madame Dorothea at her house. And knowing that? I find this delicious. Because in the book Clary hates having to borrow Isabelle's clothes and feels stupid and awkward in them - but here we, seeing her from the outside, can clearly see that she looks amazing and like a true Shadowhunter (which we suspected from the text). I love it!

But let's reassure ourselves that Clary doesn't start out as a badass in this film. Here's a shot of her on what seems to be a little Juliet balcony, again at the building being used as her house:

Adorable, and just right. A couple more shots of Clary au natural:

It's everyone's favourite Simon! Robert Sheehan here not only looks supernaturally like everyone's vision of Simon (I mean, whoa) but supernaturally like Josh, Cassie's real life husband. Seriously, I think Josh was even wearing that exact jacket when we met. What you can also see here is the brilliant casting at work because doesn't the chemistry between these two just blaze right off the pixels? Squee!

Next some really great action shots.

Clary on the phone, rushing down the street with an anxious look on her face. I'm pretty sure this must be the scene where Jocelyn phones her and tells her to stay away from the house, then Clary hears the start of the attack. This made me blink a tiny bit because if I remember rightly, in the book that happens at night and Clary's in club clothes. But it's possible that a) they're going to desaturate the footage to make it look like night and these ARE Clary's clubbing clothes or b) they've rejigged things and the scene doesn't play out that way anymore, which is probably more likely. It's just a little weird to adjust my mental image of that scene, which I always imagined dark and moody, to this sunlit, bright one.

EDIT: The delightful Carla pointed out that I've made a mistake above - actually Clary receives that phonecall outside Java Jones during the daytime. So basically that was my own impressions of how the scene should be (dark and grim) interfering with my memory and insisting it ought to be at night. But this is great because it means the scene is pretty much exactly like the book, arguing for some great book faithfulness from the filmmakers. Yay!

Clary running like Hell, trying to get home and help her mum. *Sniff* Poor Clary! You can see the rain puddles splashing up under her feet there in the road - according to set reports, the production team are constantly using hoses to create those, since it's clearly a warm and dry summer there in Toronto and of course the book is set in rainy autumn in New York.

I can't wait to see some more photos from the shoot. I'm honestly so excited for this film; it's going to be a really hard wait until this time next year when it's scheduled to release, but these pictures ease the pain a little.

In other news, the team behind the brilliant UKYA Blog had a big old meet up with loads of readers and bloggers and writers on Monday (lucky!) and they revealed the Top 100 UKYA Books as voted for by visitors to their site. My lovely friend Laura (SisterSpooky) was there, and sent me this:

Shadows on the Moon made it into the Top 100! Right there next to Philip Reeve, Mark Haddon and Malorie Blackman! So thrilling! Thanks so much to everyone that voted, and especially to Susie and Keris and Keren the other brilliant authors who run UKYA.

Well, that's it from me today. Let me know how you're doing in the comments, my lovelies :)


Unknown said...

Those are awesome pictures! *squeals* I cannot wait for this movie!!
And congrats on making it into the top 100, Shadows completely deserves its place there :D

Zoë Marriott said...

Amy: Right?! I want Clary's hair so bad. *Sigh* And thank you; I'm incredulous that the book made it, but delighted :)

Alex Mullarky said...

Congratulations! Should be in the top 10 UKYA in my opinion :P

Zoë Marriott said...

Alex: Thank you. *Hugs*

Emma Pass said...

City of Bones is making its way to the top of my TBR pile - it sounds fantastic and the film looks like it's going to be great too. And BIG congrats on making the top 100! Very well deserved.

P.S. *Loving* Frostfire - the writing is so rich and vivid and the characters are amazing!

Megha said...

Ditto what Alex said :)

Oh no! I hope your dad's okay. You don't need to apologise, that's a completely fine reason for not blogging.

I'm glad you were there to sort of 'be the commentary' behind those pictures because frankly, it's been a REALLY long time since I read City of Bones. Most/all of the actors seem perfect for their roles! (I have no idea why Alex Pettyfer would turn down the offer, and also, even though I WANTED him to play Jace at first, his most recent photos do NOT make him look like a teenager at all.)

Anyway, hope your dad gets better :)

Zoë Marriott said...

Emma: I admire CC's ability to create this amazing, breathless, sweep-me-away quality so much. I wish I could bottle it. And thank you very much; I'm really glad you're enjoying the angst-fest.

Megha: Thanks, hun! *Big Hug* I only read CoB for the second time six months ago and I still got a fairly crucial detail wrong there, so no worries :)

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