Following news of the show's renewal by Freeform, Jade Hassoune talks Shadowhunters season 2, fleshing out a character like Meliorn, comic book scene, cartooning and much, much, more!
First off, I’d just like to say CONGRATULATIONS on the second season renewal! Getting a renewal on any show is a big deal, how does it feel to be moving forward from here?
Thank you! Feels so good, so happy! I always had a deep knowing we would continue, especially as I was reading the books, I would tell some of the cast and writers that I was certain but in this business it's wise not to celebrate until it is 1000% confirmed. Because things do change all the time. The Mortal Instruments is such a big story and we've gotta be able to tell the whole thing for season one to make sense right?! I'm very happy everyone gets to continue building this world. I'm so looking forward to going back to work and hang with this great group of humans. Epic things coming.
How has it been working with the Shadowhunters cast and crew? Any cool or funny BTS stories to share? The fans are undoubtedly interested in hearing about those!
It's been such a good time! On and off set. We've got a beautiful family bond. And I'm sure it will only get stronger over the years.
And BTS stories?! You can be sure that there is a lot of cracking up and laughter around set. The fun everyone is having is palpable. There was a time when we were in the forrest walking through the beautiful Seelie glade trying to avoid the pretty fairie dust flakes that could potentially sting our skin. While everyone else wore face masks and as we're trying to gracefully walk without tripping on rocks and tree roots while maintaining composure because Dom, Kat and I just cracked a joke right before "action." Good times! Also, it's good focus training as an actor. The scene turned out beautiful.
What are you most excited about or looking forward to overall for season two?
I'm pretty sure we'll get some of book 2's storyline... That means we get to meet Meliorn's boss and see a little bit more of the Faerie Realm. Hopefully more Meliorn interacting with more characters and joining up on future missions.
How about your character in particular? Can you also tell those who aren’t familiar with the show a bit more about Meliorn?
Yes! Meliorn is a Seelie, which is the same as a Faerie, sort of elf-like beings in this world. He is the Queen of Faeries, he's Seelie Queen's right hand man and representative. He is a Knight of the Seelie Court. Faeries are part of what Shadowhunters call Downworlders. Seelies are half-angel half-demon creatures. So they could be considered neither good nor evil. They don't usually join sides in a battle unless they are directly affected by a situation or threat. In season 1, Meliorn is in a relationship with Isabelle Lightwood (Emeraude Toubia), a Shadowhunter, even as her family disapproves. Meliorn is very connected to Nature and has a relaxed approach to life, has plenty of energy and magic to join a fight, being a faerie knight and all. He is introduced in the mix because of Isabelle, they have an interesting relationship that also involves sharing information on what's happening with the Shadowhunters and the Clave (the law) and vice-versa, also, he loves Isabelle in my opinion.
What was the most challenging part about playing a character like this?
The most challenging part was waiting quite a while before being able to discover Meliorn's magical powers!!! Well, for me as an actor, it was to be as truthful as possible in a fantastic world. This is a pure imagination game. And I've got to sell you that I am in fact a faerie. Good thing I connect with this type of world, I spent hours as a kid pretending I was an elf running around looking for crystals. The gorgeous sets and costumes help tremendously, the rest is up to us to embody the ShadowWorld and make you believe it's a real world. All of the actors are sculpting this world as a collective. And as a whole, I think season 1 finds it's voice.
If there was one thing you could change about the character, what would that be?
In a way I feel like we already did. The writers of the show took the character of Meliorn and gave him more backstory and gave us an opportunity to spend more time with him. He is well written in the books but we barely get to know him, we get a sense of his energy, and his manner of speaking, which I used as reference. Now we got to flesh him out even more. It is so much fun to play him. He has many layers to him.
Is there something specific you’re hoping to see from Meliorn next season?
I'm hoping to see him develop more friendships with the Scooby gang. More magic! Joining more fights. And hopefully he'll escort our friends to see the Queen. I don't want to say too much, not to spoil anything for those who haven't read the books.
You’re also active in the comic book scene, can you tell us a bit more what drew you in to the scene as well as what kept you in it?
JH: I've always been creating comics and cartoons as a kid and throughout my life. A couple years ago I finally went to school to get my cartooning certificate. I'm still watching and observing the comic book scene from the shadows. But I'll bring it out to the public when I feel ready. Going to Comic Cons will help for sure! Right now you can see some of my art on my social media. I also draw posters for a monthly dance party in Toronto called Homebrew. I have some projects in the works but nothing is ready yet. I'll be revealing things as we go.
Muahaha. Which now makes it easy for me to ask - if you could play any superhero, who’d it be? Why?
Muahahhhaaaaa. I love this. Probably one of the hardest questions. Are there any left?! Seems like they are all being produced as films. I'd say either Silver Surfer or Dr. Manhattan. Because I want to manipulate matter and time/space and travel through the universe.
Are there any other projects you are currently involved with? Can you tell us a bit more about them?
Yes! Very excited for "That's My DJ" Season 2 and 3! A web series I am part of. Although I am very present in season 2, season 3 has a special place in my heart. I have the honour to embody the lead character Sam and I think it is some my best work. Also the production quality is on point. The experience was brilliant as were the cast and the crew. Based in Toronto, it could be described as the shows "Skins meets Shameless, all wrapped into one Electronic Music Blanket." You'll get a true experience of the underground DJ scene of Toronto, told through different perspectives: Meagan's and Sam's. It's beautiful and heartbreaking and inspiring. Keep an eye out on social media, more coming. #TMDJ2 #TMDJ3
Watchtivist was created “for the active watchers of entertainment.” I’d love to know what shows/movies you’re currently hooked on. What are YOU bingeing right now?
Niiiice. I wish I had more time to watch shows. But I can tell you, I just finished binging two seasons of "Schitt's Creek". I adored it. And when I'm at my friends' place sometimes I catch an episode of "How to Get Away with Murder" or "The Walking Dead." I'm a loyal reader of the comics. I can't wait for more "American Horror Story" and "Scream Queens". Of course I'm watching "Shadowhunters" as a fan and first time witness. But my favorite right now is "Rupaul's Drag Race"!! This new season is too good.
If you could be on any one of those or join the cast of any of them, which would it be? What type of character on that show and why that show/character?
I'd love to join the cast of Scream Queens. It seems like such fun to play so over the top. And I have a little dream of working with Emma Roberts.
And American Horror Story! The cast is epic, no need to explain. And it would be a dream come true. Maybe anything Ryan Murphy created.
And lastly, anything else you would like to say to the readers and viewers?
I love this life. I love the arts and entertainment world and the online community it creates. I love being inspired while creating a project but also by the conversations and reaction it causes with the audience afterwards. Thank you for joining us with Shadowhunters, for watching it and allowing us to continue telling this epic magical story. I hope to continue doing this forever. Let us continue evolving and learning how to be more loving and to unify as diverse humans. We all have unique special abilities waiting to express and the world will be a solid place when we all Be who we are. There is room for all of it. See you out there!
Like what you see or have suggestions on who we should feature next on the site? Let us know in the COMMENTS below!