Mortal Engines brings Philip Reeve's post-apocalyptic book series to the big screen - but does it include an after-credits scene? Peter Jackson bought the rights to Reeve's novel back in 2009 and originally planned to direct the film adaptation himself. Of course, that was before Guillermo del Toro left The Hobbit adaptation and Jackson took his place at the helm. Three movies and several years of work later, Jackson was left needing a break from the world of big-budget filmmaking. Thus, he recruited his longtime storyboard artist and effects supervisor, Christian Rivers, to direct Mortal Engines instead.
Scripted by Jackson, Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens, Mortal Engines is set in a future where giant traction cities roam the planet and prey on smaller traction cities for resources. Robert Sheehan costars as Tom Natsworthy, a lower-tier Londoner who ends up on an adventure with the fugitive assassin Hester Shaw (Hera Hilmar) and, eventually, members of the Anti-Traction League: an alternate civilization that stands in opposition to "predator" cities like London. Reeve wrote four novels in the Mortal Engines series overall, so there's a lot of mythology in the movie adaptation that helps set the stage for potential film sequels to come.
Moviegoers planning to see Mortal Engines may be wondering if the film also includes a post-credits scene that feeds directly into a sequel. For better or worse, Mortal Engines doesn't have an after-credits scene. Rather, everything that audiences need to know for the sequel (should it come to pass) is covered in the movie proper, before the final credits start rolling.
Those who've read Reeve's original novels will no doubt notice some significant differences between the movie and book versions of Mortal Engines. Rivers' film adaptation nevertheless lays the groundwork for a followup based primarily on Reeves' second novel (2003's Predator's Gold), despite its deviations from the source material. While it's become customary for tentpoles based on pre-existing IPs (like Mortal Engines) to also lay the groundwork for sequels with end credits scenes, that's never been Jackson's style - and so, unsurprisingly, Mortal Engines doesn't follow the trend, either.
As for the odds of a Mortal Engines sequel happening, well, that's another story. The film isn't generating particularly good word of mouth and hasn't been tracking strongly at the box office, either. Meanwhile, this weekend's other major franchise release, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, is being haled as one of the best films of the year by critics, and is projected to breeze past Mortal Engines during their opening frame. Since Mortal Engines reportedly cost around $100-150 million to make, the prospect of a sequel is pretty iffy right now. If nothing else, though, the film mostly works as a standalone story, so a followup isn't necessarily mandatory in this case.
- Mortal Engines (2018) release date: Dec 14, 2018