Lily Collins Set to Work Magic in 'The Mortal Instruments'

[caption id="attachment_22104" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Getty Images / Simon and Schuster"]Lily Collins / Mortal Instruments[/caption]

The "Mortal Instruments" cast is finally being conjured!

Fans of Cassandra Clare's series of dark fantasy novels are certainly feeling the magic today, as Deadline reports that Lily Collins has been cast in the lead role of Clarissa 'Clary' Fray, a teenager who finds her life a little less mundane after she witnesses a bizarre murder at a New York City club.

Collins will be playing the role in the first installment of the series, "City of Bones," and it's a safe bet that she'll continue through the screen adaptations of the next three books: "City of Ashes," "City of Glass" and the yet-to-be-released "City of Fallen Angels" (which will be published in April 2011).

"The Mortal Instruments," which explores the thin line between the everyday world of human beings ("mundanes") and a hidden world of magic and monsters (and the various conflicts therein) is a top contender as an heir to the magical franchise throne currently occupied by "Harry Potter" and "Twilight."

Lily Collins being cast as Clary means they're one step closer to actually filming "City of Bones." Scott Charles Stewart ("Priest," "Legion") is directing the film, and he certainly has our permission to start, well, immediately.

Now, who will be cast as Jace Wayland, the young lad who introduces Clary to the world she never knew existed -- and to which she is mysteriously linked? Wait and see how the magic continues!