The trailer to Mortal Engines looks interesting and piqued my interest in the series.

I know when Peter Jackson made the Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit they were planned from the start to be made as a series with filming being done back-to-back.

It doesn't look like this has happened this time, it could be due to the fact that the series takes place over a longer time scale, and some characters need to age and obviously we can't know what will happen, if the film bombs I'm sure any planned sequels will be shelved like the golden compass.

Have been any announcements or public statements about the intent to make more films? Even something about purchasing the rights to make them would be interesting.

2 Answers 2


The film tanked. It lost somewhere in the region of $100-150M (failing even to cover its production budget, let alone the marketing spend) and was critically panned.

No official statement has (yet) been made about the status of a sequel but given that the chances of a sequel were predicated on the film doing well, the odds of it securing a sequel is somewhere between non-existent and none whatsoever.


The short answer is maybe. Universal Pictures evidently have an option on all four novels (from Scholastic) as well as an ongoing agreement with the books' writer, Philip Reeve to provide script consulting for this and any future films.

Additionally, Peter Jackson's schedule would allow him to make them back-to-back if they're successful enough to merit it and more importantly, he's quite keen to make them.

PJ: "You should [read all the books] because they actually get better and better. This is one movie where I hope it's successful enough that we get to do the other stories, because the other books are really... this story mushrooms in such unexpected ways in the future books. So, I really hope we get to make those films. It's cool. It's a love story. It's an unlikely love story. It's about a young woman who doesn't really think that she will ever find love, and she finds it in a very unexpected way in the middle of this chaotic, strange world that we're in. And I also just like the idea of seeing big cities eat other."

Why Peter Jackson Is Very Excited About Making Mortal Engines Sequels


I think it's unlikely, given the film bombed and was critically panned, despite being a good watch.

I believe there was so much from the book, including character development and worldbuilding, that the filmmakers had to leave out of the Mortal Engines movie. The universe's vast mythology, for example, doesn't fit into the finite scale of a 2-hour or 3-hour film. It needs the length of a sprawling television series similar to Game of Thrones and Apple's forthcoming Foundation series.

Furthermore, the film was a totally botched opportunity. All the people who seem sad about Mortal Engines tanking seem to be the people that haven't read the books, and because visually the movie looked stunning, but it was a beautiful facade on an empty building. They gutted the heart and soul out of that story.

All I can say that a TV series is an appropriate medium for Mortal Engines. We want a complete and total on-screen do-over, but we have to wait for the rights to return to author Philip Reeve himself.

  • 1
    Whilst this is some nice reasoning for why they may or may not make more answers are always greatly improved with sources. For example, this is your opinion but if you found a quote from someone involved in production this answer would be really good.
    – TheLethalCarrot
    Apr 24, 2019 at 7:16

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