Being a movie star isn’t as easy as it looks. Just ask Lily Collins, Jamie Campbell Bower and Kevin Zegers of The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, in theaters Wednesday.
The three actors worked hard on the adult-fantasy thriller based on a series of novels by Cassandra Clare. But they played hard, too.
In the middle of a world tour, Collins, the daughter of music legend Phil Collins and his ex wife Jill Tavelman joined Bower (Collins’ onetime fling is best known for The Twilight Saga) and Zegers ( Wrong Turn, Gossip Girl) at The Mandarin Oriental.
They explained what it was like to shoot MI, about a teen (Collins) turned warrior who searches for answers in a bizarro New York City inhabited by demonic creatures and angelic forces called Shadowhunters.
How did the shoot in Toronto go?
KZ: We had so much fun because we were all working so hard, and we all had the same level of enthusiasm. You can tell when someone’s really excited about doing something. It was like, ‘This could be really great for us. This could be a really big deal.’ It’s a good movie. The characters are really well defined. It’s not guy-meets-girl, then there’s werewolves and vampires and things go crazy.
LC: We shot a lot of stuff at night so it was exhausting but a really good exhaustion. At the end of the day, you were really happy to fall into bed because you knew what you had just done. The last place you wanted to go was your trailer when your scene was over. We worked as a unit, a team. It was like summer camp.
It sounds as if you all got along.
JCB: We all gave each other such mad props. [Pauses.] Who do I think I am? Puff Daddy? But seriously, we pushed each other to go that little bit more because it’s exciting.
KZ: Jamie would be doing a stunt and the rest of us would be behind the monitors. We were fans of the movie we were making. It wasn’t so selfish. Making a movie can be so selfish. We all got along so well. Everyone says that, but it’s 95 percent crap. This was real.
What kind of preparation did you have to do?
LC: I start out as a normal teenager and work my way into being this warrior. Hopefully, in the sequel I get to show more potential and fighting. We’ve been doing interviews and mall tours, which is exciting. We want to give each fan 110 percent because these people have waited so long to see us.
JCB: I’ve done movies from books before. You’re given this bible, where the author has basically told you how to be. Then there is the added pressure from the fans of the preexisting novel or whatever. But it makes your job slightly easier. We find out specific elements of our character then add our bit of flavor and spice.
What’s next for you all?
JCB: I play a car thief in Overdrive, shooting in Marseilles by Colombian director Antonio Negret. And I’d like to do more Mortal Instruments sequels before I have to get into a wheelchair.
LC: I just came back from Dublin for my [lead] part in Love, Rosie. I was British, aged 10 years with the help of makeup, wardrobe and prosthetics and have a child by the end. It’s kind of a romantic comedy but extremely heartbreaking.
KZ: I play a sociopathic rapist, which is more in line with things I’ve done in the past. Light fare [laughs]. I’m also a newlywed. My wife Jaime Feld is an agent in Los Angeles. I’m going to be a husband for a while.