Jamie Campbell Bower & Ed Speleers Are Lead Contenders For 'The Mortal Instruments'

by Oliver Lyttelton
May 17, 2011 4:40 AM
39 Comments
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Model Leebo Freeman Also In The Running


While we're yet to see whether youthful, dickish star Alex Pettyfer's move into more serious territory with Steven Soderbergh's "Magic Mike" and the actioner "Overdrive" is a good thing or not, there's certainly one group who are delighted with the actor's career shift: other high-cheekboned young actors! Only a few months ago, the hotly tipped young star of "I Am Number Four" was being courted for every prospective young adult franchise in town, with "The Hunger Games," "The Seventh Son" and "The Mortal Instruments" all said to be courting the 21-year-old actor.

Whether it was Pettyfer turning them down, or his bad reputation making the filmmakers look elsewhere, Josh Hutcherson and Sam Clafin stepped into the first two, and now word's come in of three prospective candidates for the male lead in the latter, an adaptation of the popular young adult novel series by Cassandra Clare. The plot revolves around a girl (played by Lily Collins, who's also bagged the title role in "The Brothers Grimm: Snow White." Snow White, we mean, not the Grimms ) who falls in love with Jace, a hunter of invisible demons -- the role that backers Screen Gems are currently hunting an actor for.

The Wrap report that three young actors all tested opposite Collins on the Sony lot on Friday. The best known is Jamie Campbell-Bower, who since debuting in Tim Burton's "Sweeney Todd" has racked up some serious franchise experience, both as nasty vampire Caius in the "Twilight" franchise and as evil wizard Gellert Grindelwald in "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows." He's also the co-lead in Roland Emmerich's ridiculous-looking "Anonymous," playing the younger version of Rhys Ifans' character and currently plays King Arthur in the Starz series "Camelot," alongside Eva Green and Joseph Fiennes. So he's not doing too badly, although this would certainly be his highest-profile role to date.

Ed Speleers, meanwhile, is another contender who's worked in would-be franchise territory before: at 16, he was the lead in Fox's almost-inconceivably awful "Eragon," which the studio hoped would turn into a franchise to mirror Harry Potter and "Lord of the Rings." The film tanked, and Speleers hasn't worked much since, but this could serve as something of a comeback. Finally, model (and, it would seem, 'death metal drummer') Leebo Freeman, a first-time actor, brings up the pack.

They're all about the same age and look as Pettyfer, so a specific idea is clearly being chased here. Whoever lands the gig (and we should find out fairly soon), we're not expecting much from this one: Scott Stewart, director of the abysmal "Legion" and "Priest," is at the helm. At least he's letting Paul Bettany sit this one out, eh?

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39 Comments

  • thomasd5 | May 26, 2011 11:40 AMReply

    Sorry, but I still think Alex Pettyfer would be the perfect choice for impersonating Jace !

  • Grace C. | May 25, 2011 4:24 AMReply

    I hope they do not cast actors who were in a major famous movie adaptation series like Twilight...no good for JCB to be Jace...Everyone seems to go for Ed S. if Alex P. is too chicken to take on the role of Jace... Lets face it, the Mortal Instruments Series is going to be huge because of its fan base with the book and might as well give the fans what they want & choose the alternative from Alex P. which is Ed Speleer FTW...

  • BARBARA | May 25, 2011 2:59 AMReply

    Give the role to Ed, because everyone wants to see HIM in it!
    He's got the looks, he's got the carizma and he has the talent!!
    What are you waiting for!!
    GIVE THE ROLE TO ED SPELEERS AND START FILMING ALREADY!

  • LoveableLuke | May 24, 2011 12:52 PMReply

    From my perspective it has to be Ed! He is hot, edgy and everything a man (or woman) would want! Go ED!

  • Grant | May 24, 2011 12:48 PMReply

    How has the desion not been made!?! I'm a massive MI Fan and every news page you go on Ed is winning hands down! Give the man the role already... its what the people want!

  • Anita | May 20, 2011 5:08 AMReply

    I don't understand why the decision hasn't already been made? JCB and that punky guy definitely haven't got the looks. I wouldn't wanna watch either of them as the lead in a film. Creepy. Speelers has got to get it surely?!

  • Ashleigh Bizzle | May 20, 2011 5:05 AMReply

    Ed Speelers. no DOUBT.

  • Chelski | May 19, 2011 6:47 AMReply

    Speleers is the actor, Mortal Instruments his game
    We're all together and Ed for Jace is our aim!
    So cheer him on through the sun and rain
    Cos Speleersy, Speleersy his name.

    Speleers! Speleers! Speleers!

  • Will | May 18, 2011 11:57 AMReply

    Read the book, Speleers suits the role to the ground. We Want ED SPELEERS, We Want ED SPELEERS, We Want ED SPELEERS, We Want ED SPELEERS, We Want ED SPELEERS, We Want ED SPELEERS, We Want ED SPELEERS, We Want ED SPELEERS, We Want ED SPELEERS, We Want ED SPELEERS, We Want ED SPELEERS,

  • Alice | May 18, 2011 11:09 AMReply

    I love Ed Speleers to pieces, he has to be Jace... I'm reading the book now and he fits the character so well. If its not Ed I think I will cry and probably burn the book!!! x x

  • Edward | May 18, 2011 11:08 AMReply

    Jace has to be Ed Speleers. He is the only one who can master both a lovable vunerability and jerkish arrogance while gaining the support of the audience who hang on his every word.... I'd be surprised if they haven't offered him the contract already. x x

  • Dan | May 18, 2011 9:17 AMReply

    Ed is so hot. I've never liked JCB and this new guy Leebo guy. He looks like a cross between malfoy from harry potter and Bowie in his cross dressing years (but not as hot or edgy)
    ED ALL THE WAY!

  • Ed4Jace | May 18, 2011 6:36 AMReply

    Ed4Jace. Need I say more.

  • ruth caton | May 18, 2011 4:05 AMReply

    wow finished the book and have no doubt Ed Speleers is THE numero uno choice to play Jace

  • Japhet Corncrake | May 18, 2011 3:09 AMReply

    Ed Speleers 4 me!!

  • Kim | May 18, 2011 2:59 AMReply

    The rock drummer is scary looking. His cheekbones look like they could cut glass. The Jaime-Campbell Bower is... whatever. He's not how I envisioned Jace. They need to have an actor who looks enough like Lilly Collins to make you question (spoiler alert) if they are siblings because that's a big thing throughout the series... It's a gross thing, but a big thing.

  • Will | May 18, 2011 2:38 AMReply

    Got to be Ed man!

    Check out this link.
    http://edspeleersforjace.wordpress.com/

    Boys and Girls cant help but love this guy!

  • tommytutone | May 18, 2011 2:16 AMReply

    roy, if you are talking about lonely place to die, i think it is due out oct 2011 in UK...http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1422136/

    definitely think speleers should get it. met him once at the Cannes film fest 2009 and had a bit of a chat with him...seems like a very down to earth and genuine guy with his head screwed on - and from what I have seen a great actor! he deserves a break...the downfall of eragon was not due to bad acting but a crap script in my opinion. this kid seems like he was born to be a star!

  • jen humphries | May 18, 2011 2:02 AMReply

    Ed is the only Jace for me, what a great actor and good looking guy - perfect for the role!

  • Catherine Moorehead | May 18, 2011 1:58 AMReply

    Oof, Definitely Mr Speleers! He has the best face and attitude for this, and people are desperate to see him on the big screen again. And the guy on the right looks like Rhydian from the Xfactor (wouldnt say no though would I? oof)

    Lets hope Speleers smashes this one!

  • RainbowBrain | May 18, 2011 1:55 AMReply

    Ed Speleers is easily in my top 5 all time ever. Do we know if he has a girl friend? I would love to test his metal! I dont think he could resist me! lol. Oh I hope he get this role!

  • Frankie | May 18, 2011 1:53 AMReply

    ED ED ED ED ED ED ED. He is the man!

  • StreetPlaya2972 | May 18, 2011 1:53 AMReply

    whoeva gets dis part is one lucky bruva, gettin to get up close n persunal wiv dat lily collins. she fiyn, nah mean?! i wud tap dat huney bare if i woz on set wiv 'er!!

  • xxhaleyxx | May 18, 2011 1:51 AMReply

    the jcb guy looks a bit like a hobo, and i also hate his name whilst leebo (again stupid name) looks like a nazi.

    has to be speleers, looks very charming, and EXTREMELY good looking. loving his cheeky smile.

  • Free Roy W | May 18, 2011 1:50 AMReply

    Lots of support for Ed Speleers here it seems! I hope he gets it, I think I'll give this one a miss otherwise!! Does anyone know when that film he's in with Melissa George is due to hit the screens???

  • Gary Heard | May 18, 2011 1:48 AMReply

    Ed Speleers has gotta be yo top choice! Love for Ed coming straight from Chicago!

  • WhatDoesMarcellusWallaceLookLike | May 18, 2011 1:41 AMReply

    I think that they should go for Ed Speleers as well. He's got a badboy charm, and unlike the other two HE CAN ACT! I saw a short he was in recently and he was very convincing. Good looking kid too ;-)

  • SuperSexyKirstey | May 18, 2011 1:25 AMReply

    OMG! Ed Speleers is so perfect for this role. Super hot, super sexy (like me, lol;-) He should def get the role.
    Also LOL the below do you think its really JCB!?!?!?x

  • Jamie Campbell-Bower | May 18, 2011 1:19 AMReply

    I'd like to rule myself out of the running.

  • Naila | May 17, 2011 10:40 AMReply

    Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers Ed Speleers

  • Christopher | May 17, 2011 8:33 AMReply

    I'm not sure why anybody wants this role so badly. I like the books just fine, but Scott Stewart's previous movies have been craptastic, so why do we think this one will be any better? I'm sure that's why Pettyfer passed on it.

  • Móni | May 17, 2011 8:01 AMReply

    I like Jamie but he's not like Jace at all though he's a great actor, I know nothing about Freeman (and don't find him 'angelic') so my vote is definitely Ed's - as it has always been from the beginning.

  • julianc2000 | May 17, 2011 6:43 AMReply

    Oh god no! Anyone but JCB he is just FUGLY!!! Speelers was a cutie but now he looks a bit more mean, like he'd cross the road to knock your lights out if you looked at him funny... thats kinda hot though! The Leebo guy has nooo sex appeal, like a wierder version of Gary Newman. For 6 films and the depth of the character I definitely hope they go for the grown-up badboy eragon... I know quite a few guys who would kill to see that!

  • MrsWinchester24 | May 17, 2011 6:36 AMReply

    Glad to see so many Ed Speleers for Jace. Speleers has always been in my top 5 picks and out of the three he's the only one I can see playing Jace.

  • webster | May 17, 2011 6:26 AMReply

    all 3 tested with lily on Friday. looked em all up & if Ed had any chemistry with Lily, he should b Jace!

  • Jamiee | May 17, 2011 6:12 AMReply

    The guy on the far right leebo looks like Lurch from the Adams Family. Is he really a contender? It's gotta be Ed for Jace

  • Alice M | May 17, 2011 6:03 AMReply

    Ed is the one for Jace, he's perfect for the role. I really hope he gets it

  • AndreaPirlo4eva | May 17, 2011 6:02 AMReply

    This is great news if Ed Speleers is the chosen. We are huge fans in Italy and he seems to spend a lot of time here, I would definitely love to see him again as so I'm sure would le ragazze di Milano — the girls of milano!

  • sam gigs | May 17, 2011 5:58 AMReply

    saw this on Empire...totally agree with it...
    Its been a long time since Eragon - Speleers was a young fledgling picked straight out of school and thrown into the Lion's den of Hollywood. Since then he has and is turning into a sought after young film star. Bestowed with an onscreen presence that is such a rarity in the current new crop of young leading male actors, that it should be treasured and developed into the character & lead actor that is easily within Speleer's capability to achieve. And by doing so joining the former (James Dean) and current legends (of such ilk as Depp and Mr Pitt) of movies as we know it. Suitably impressive in the short - The Ride and from what my sources tell me about the look of "A Lonely Place to Die" (officially released in the UK this Summer), young Speleers will be as Hot Property as Property gets on a hot, sun-scorched Summer's Day!!!

    from Empire Online

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