So, normally I'd start this post with something along the lines of "Vampire Academy is a 2014 movie adaptation based on a 6 book-series by Richelle Mead," but today, I'm going to skip the pleasantries. I'm going to get straight to it, because quite frankly, if you're not an existing fan of VA, then this post probably isn't for you.
If you've not read the books, and been there through the acquisition of the movie rights, the making of the movie, the distribution, the fan marketing scheme and finally, the crowd-funding campaign, I'd suggest brushing up on some #VampireAcademy knowledge, and seeing what it's all about — perhaps this one on what was changed from the books for the movie.
Will There Be A 'Vampire Academy 2' Coming Out?
Now, as you've probably already heard, a Vampire Academy sequel is a no. Well, more like "not anytime soon." The official, producer-run Vampire Academy page posted the following:
#VAFamily, to those who contributed and to those who helped spread the word, we just want to say Thank You for believing in Frostbite and helping us try to continue the Vampire Academy series. Alas! we did not receive the required contribution, therefore those who contributed on Indiegogo, if you have not already received your refunds, you will shortly. To those who bid on our Ebay auctions, you will still receive your winning items.
To Richelle Mead, Lucy Fry, Dominic Sherwood, Danila Kozlovsky, Sami Gayle, Marci Liroff, Jaymes Bullet and our music Supervisor Howard Paar - a Special Thank You for your contributions and support in bringing the Indiegogo Campaign to life.
Goodbye, for now, Little Dhampir's!
As expected, a lot of us Little Dhampirs are not happy, to say the least.
This is a movie that the fandom has fought for since the very beginning. It's a movie based on a series of much-loved, best-selling books that have been around for seven years. In that time, Richelle Mead has blessed us with six incredible books, as well as six wonderfully written spin-off books. To have all our hard work crowdfunding and campaigning for this franchise come to such an abrupt end is a bitter pill to swallow. The goal for the crowd-funding campaign was to raise $1.5 million — the saddest part is we weren't even close. We were only 17% of the way there.
Let that sink in.
The Facebook page alone has over 300,000 fans, and we only managed to raise a measly 17%.
The point I'm making, is that for every one fan (myself included) who supported this movie, spread the word and donated, there were thousands more who didn't pitch in. Thousands more, who had a ton of ridiculous excuses and used that as a reason not to help make Vampire Academy a better film. They didn't like Zoey, or they didn't like Danila, so they wouldn't help out. They hated the team behind the movie, or didn't like the supporting cast, so they wouldn't help out.
Whilst not liking the cast or the team behind the movie is a valid feeling - especially where VA is concerned - to not donate (if you could afford to) or even use social media to help the movie, is wrong. A sequel for Vampire Academy could've been the opportunity to right the wrongs of the first movie, and unfortunately its seeming more and more likely that we'll never get that chance.
Breaking Down Fan Excuses And Why The Decision Not To Help Was Wrong
"I didn't like the first movie, so I'm not helping or supporting the making of a second."
You do realize that an entirely new writer was hired for the sequel, don't you? You realize that the Waters brothers weren't in any way involved, and the entire fate of the second movie, rested in the gentle and understanding hands of Preger Entertainment? The studio who fought so hard for Vampire Academy, just as we did. Your decision not help cost VA fans an opportunity to see an all-new and improved Vampire Academy.
"I don't like Zoey Deutch as Rose. I won't support a sequel unless they re-cast Rose."
I hate to break it you, but that's not going to happen.
Zoey was cast over a year ago, she's already played the part, if you were holding out for a new Rose for Frostbite-2015, then your entire life was a lie. The chances of them re-casting Rose were always incredibly slim. Not least because Zoey wasn't the problem with the first movie. Along with Dominic Sherwood & Cameron Monaghan, she was one of the saving graces.
This Isn't An Attack — Vampire Academy Fans Are Hurt
To clarify, I don't mean to "attack" the people that think these things: you're perfectly entitled to your opinion. Hey, I'm known for having a ton of them, especially where VA is concerned, but I can't help but feel resentment towards those people who weren't willing to give this franchise a second chance. To those who weren't even willing to try.
Now personally, I didn't like the movie.
Shocking, I know.
I've made that perfectly clear over a number of different mediums. In articles, on Twitter, on Instagram, on my Facebook. I have had lengthy and in-depth discussions with various Vampire Academy fans about what went wrong with that film. But I've also had lengthy and in-depth discussions about what went right with that film.
My feelings towards the film didn't stop me from deciding to give it a second chance, and I don't understand why other fans couldn't have done the same. Is Vampire Academy the only film with a large fanbase to have bombed?
The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones bombed just like VA did. Possibly even more since they had a much larger budget and the studio overall lost a ton more money than VA did. Regardless, I didn't see their fanbase deserting a City of Ashes movie. Even when the script was going through endless re-writes, when the director dropped out of doing the second movie, when production - which was scheduled to begin in 2014 - hadn't even started yet, and when they really had no information on whether or not a sequel is happening - STILL, they supported that movie. That constant support and determination to fight for their franchise, led to the birth of Freeform's #Shadowhunters. A television reboot of the film, with an all new cast produced by - you guessed it - the studio behind the failed movie. They lost over $130 million dollars making City of Bones, but the fans were so dedicated, and passionate that the studio put more money into it, and found Clary, Jace, Izzy, Alec and Simon a home on Freeform.
Why Didn't the Cast Support Us?
This is probably myself and many other fans' biggest question of all. Now, it's important to note some of the cast are exempt from this question. Danila, Lucy, Dominic and Sami all took time out of their hectic schedules to record a short video for us for the campaign page. Nathan Shaw, an extra in the movie with NO LINES, had been non-stop supporting this movie since day damn one.
But where was our Rose?
Where was our kickass leading lady, when we needed her the most?
At New York Comic Con before the movie was released, Zoey was asked about playing Rose, and whether or not she would like to return as the character in a possible sequel.
But I did it, and I know I can, and I hope I can do it again.
The above was her response, and though she seemed convincing when the opportunity presented itself, Zoey failed to come through. The opportunity to do so presented itself in the form of the crowdfunding campaign for the sequel, Frostbite. As mentioned, stars from the film recorded videos to aid the campaign, as well as sharing and talking about it on their social media accounts. The opportunity was staring her in the face, and she looked the other way, unable to send out as much as one tweet about the campaign.
I'm sorry, would it have inconvenienced your 162k Facebook Followers at the time, to have seen a post campaigning for a sequel to a film you were "thrilled" to have the opportunity to be in?
Maybe it would've been somewhat of a nuisance to your 117k Twitter Followers at the time.
Perhaps your 175k Instagram Followers would be so annoyed by an image saying "Donate for Frostbite on IndieGoGo", with a link in the description.
Now don't get this twisted: I'm not "attacking" Zoey or "hating" on her. I'm simply stating a fact. As a long time fan of VA, I take it personally that our own leading lady didn't even publicly support the crowd-funding campaign. Hell, even OVAM's post thanks Danila, Lucy and co but there's absolutely no mention of leading lady, our Rose, Zoey.
Maybe she was mentally done with the movie. Maybe she no longer wanted anything to do with Vampire Academy. Maybe the movie was such a failure that Zoey wanted to put it to the back of her mind, and never speak of it again. Maybe she just didn't want to publicly tweet or post on Facebook about it. These are all valid reasons. She's completely entitled to feel this way, and no amount of hate should come her way because of it. But that doesn't mean that myself, and many other fans, can't be angry and disappointed.
I won't go out and be immature and insult her or any of the other cast members who didn't support. That's ridiculous. I'll just say that I'm deeply disappointed. Also note that other cast members Olga Kurylenko, Claire Foy, Ashley Charles, Gabriel Byrne & Dominique Tipper failed to tweet, Facebook or update on any form of social media about it.
The sad thing about this entire ordeal is that the producers are very much in the same boat - or perhaps 'a similiar boat' would be more accurate - as the fans right now. They've worked around the freakin' clock to try to get this movie made - and get it done right. Now, with the campaign officially over, it seems this dream of a good Vampire Academy movie is over.
Now, I know this all sounds very drab — and truth be told, most people nowadays are multi fandom people. But even if that is the case, you'll always have your number one fandom. And for the fans who made Vampire Academy their number one, things are not looking good.
So, on behalf of the #VAFamily, I'd like to end this drab and dreary rant of an article on a good note. On a positive.
I want to specifically thank the following people.
Jillian Preger DeFrehn & Michael Preger
Thankyou Jillian & Michael for never giving up on Vampire Academy; for motivating us every step of the way; for being great fun on OVAM's Twitter and Facebook (Jillian I'm talking to you); and for being two of the most awesome, kick-ass and determined producers the #VAFamily will ever know.
Our beloved Russian; our beautiful Dimitri. Many of us had admittedly never heard of you until you were cast as our Russian God, but that didn't stop you from taking on this role, and tackling your first film - completely in English - for us. You interacted with the fans, you took pictures with us when we stalked you in various countries, and you literally never stopped being perfect.
One of the first pictures I remember seeing of you, was you on a plane to London, holding a copy of the first book. You cannot even begin to imagine how happy it makes fans when the actors know or read the source material. From the get-go, you made it clear that you wanted to bring a depth to Mia's character that people wouldn't necessarily expect. You didn't just want her to be — dare I say it — "The Mean Girl." You were dedicated to this role from the very beginning.
Dominic: you literally drove the ENTIRE fandom completely and utterly insane when you were cast. Before you'd even tweeted, or done an interview, we all loved you. You were our perfect Christian in looks and our perfect Christian in character. We could not have hoped for any better, and you did an amazing job at bringing a beloved character to life.
And, you know...the eye thing.
For being born.
And for absolutely KILLING IT as Jace on Shadowhunters! Your our success story!
Lucy: thank you for genuinely being probably the nicest, sweetest, most adorable human being on the planet. For saying your "whole world was green" when asked about wearing contacts for VA and for making Lissa have a lot more backbone than she does in the book. You brought our Princess to life in a way that none of us could have imagined. You made her a strong female character.
For being the most supportive of all cast members. For never failing to tweet about VA, Facebook about VA, Instagram about VA, and interacting with your fans.
And, you know...for being hot.
I normally end with an "So and so movie will be out..", but for obvious reasons, I can't do that. I've covered the progress of this movie in articles since May 2013, it's been a wild ride, and a lot of hard-work.Image searching, googling gifs, links here and there. It's been exhausting. But it was also the reason I started writing for Movie Pilot.
So thank you, Richelle Mead, for writing an amazing series that, 7 years later, I am still completely, 100%, totally in love and obsessed with. I will never stop loving VA, and even if I can't continue to write about it (I really hope I can!!)- I will still ALWAYS talk and fangirl about it.
UPDATE: Michael Preger, has a message for the fans! Check it out here!
UPDATE (2): Vampire Diaries Producer, Julie Plec working on a VA TV Series!?! Check it out here!