A few days ago, Vulture reported that an offer went out to 20-year-old British actor Alex Pettyfer, star of the upcoming I Am Number Four and Beastly, for the role of Jace Wayland, the male lead in the film adaptation of the Mortal Instruments book series. Screen Gems President Clint Culpepper apparently even said that he feels so strongly about the actor that he only wants to greenlight the film, if he signs on.
At this weekend’s press day for I Am Number Four, we got the opportunity to ask the actor (who was paired with director D.J. Caruso for the interview) if he is, indeed, interested in signing on for the fantasy film, based on the best-selling novel City of Bones (the first book in the series) by author Cassandra Clare. For what he had to say, hit the jump:
Question: It was just reported the other day that Clint Culpepper at Screen Gems said that he doesn’t want to go ahead with the Mortal Instruments film, unless you sign on for the male lead. Is that something you’re interested in doing? Are you close to signing on for that?
Alex Pettyfer: He said he won’t do it [without me]? When did he say that?
Question: It came out a couple days ago that he doesn’t want to do the film without you as Jace.
D.J. Caruso: Does your agent know that? That’s a really good thing.
Pettyfer: I’m a big fan of the books, and I’m just trying to figure out what I’m doing next.
Author Cassandra Clare also took to her blog on Friday, to confirm that the actor has been circling the project for a little bit. Here’s what she had to say:
“Hey guys, I know a lot of you have been waiting for updates . . . I wanted to wait till I could have an official chat with the studio folks before I said anything, so my small contribution is: I know Alex has met with the director, Scott Stewart, several times; I know he screened Scott’s movie, Priest, and loved it; I know he read the books over the holidays and really liked them and liked Jace, and his agents are representing him in negotiating making a deal for the role of Jace. At this point it’s all about the deal, which really doesn’t have anything to do with me, so I stand back and wait for news like the rest of you.
With director Scott Stewart at the helm from a script by Jessica Postigo, and with Lily Collins already signed on for the lead female role, Screen Gems offers this synopsis of the first film of the series:
“In City of Bones, set in contemporary New York City, a seemingly ordinary teenager Clary Fray (Collins), discovers she is the descendant of a line of Shadowhunters, a secret cadre of warriors dedicated to driving demons out of our world. When Clary’s mother disappears, she must join a daring group of young Shadowhunters on an adventure, which leads her through a city filled with mischievous fairies, eccentric warlocks, werewolf gangs and other strange creatures.”
The character of Jace (who Pettyfer would play) is one such Shadowhunter, who is heavily tattooed with strange symbols all over his body. More as we hear it.