Peter Jackson is no stranger to sprawling adaptions of fantasy epics. Lord of the Rings, King Kong, The Hobbit, he’s been around the block. Soon the Academy Award winning director will be at it again. His next target is Phillip Reeve’s dystopian young adult novel Mortal Engines.
Set in a post-apocalyptic future after a catastrophe known as the Sixty Minute War has ravaged the planet, mankind has developed the technology to construct giant wheels and engines that can be attached to entire cities, such as London, enabling them to roam the Earth and dismantle other cities for resources, transforming them into the destructive “Traction Cities”. The premise is familiar yet imaginative enough to bring theater-goers a fresh new post-apocalyptic movie.
Apparently, there is now official news of a release date for the film. Variety magazine reports that Mortal Engines is set for a release date of December 14, 2018. Rather than direct the film, Jackson has taken on screenwriting duties with his wife and frequent collaborator, Fran Walsh. Directorial duties will instead be passed on to Christian Rivers.
Released in 2001, Mortal Engines was the first in a four-part book series called the Predator Cities, but it is not yet known whether plans are being made for film adaptions of all four novels. Such a possibility will likely depend entirely on the success of this first film. Stay tuned for updates on the project.