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From Out of the Shadows: An Exclusive Interview with Shadowhunters’ Jade Hassouné

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Canadian musician, artist, and actor Jade Hassouné is currently playing Seelie Meliorn on Freeform’s hit fantasy series Shadowhunters. Jade’s previous work credits include Heartland, Cyberbully, Laurentia, Erased, and Brick Mansions. Taking a break from his busy schedule, Jade chatted with Talk Nerdy about Clare’s The Mortal Instruments, Meliorn’s arc, Isabelle and his hopes for a season 2.

We know you’re a big fan of The Mortal Instrument series! What has it been like now that it’s actually on the air and you’ve been able to see a few episodes?

It’s a lot of fun. It’s the first time I’m watching it too. To have gained the fanboy-ness and to be watching it is a lot of fun. I also really love watching different reviews on YouTube from the fans. I get to share that feeling with them. I find myself reacting out loud and things like that. (laughs). It’s really great to see.

There’s so much going on when I watch it as an artist as well. There are a lot of layers to it, but it’s great to be a fan of the series. To see it take shape and to see where it goes and where the pieces come from and everything, in the story. Since the timelines are different.

Excluding your scenes with Isabelle, what has been your favorite scene to see as a fan?

Wow! Great question. The summoning of the Memory Demon has been my favorite. I think that was a really cool scene because it combined a lot of the aspects of different moments from the book where they do summon different beings and I thought it was cool how they did that, and so soon too. You know? It was a really cool scene.

What book are you up to in the series now? Are you finished with it?

I read The Mortal Instruments Book 1-5. I still have City of Heavenly Fire to read because the fans told me to wait and to read the prequel series, The Infernal Devices. So I saved the final book of The Mortal Instruments and started reading Clockwork Angel. I can’t wait to get back to it because I took a break due to my busy schedule.

How has your life changed since Shadowhunters aired?

(laughs). A lot. It changed in a way that I’ve been envisioning for a while. I’ve been thinking about these things since I was little. It’s really cool to see it all happen, but at the same time, it feels very normal because it’s just the next step in my journey. I’m still learning so much and discovering new things. I love it a lot. I love the interaction with the fanbase.

Nothing about me personally is that different. It’s just more fleshed out the reality of what I’ve been wanting to do.

How has reading the series changed your portrayal or your perception of Meliorn?

It’s been great because … Well, I tried to read as much as I could before I even shot my first episode so, I already had a good sense of his thought process, I guess. It was really cool to take what I could from the books and bring it … The writers gave him new things to say. Things that he’s never said before. Things that aren’t found in the books. I thought it was perfect. It fit so well with what I was feeling from reading the book. The more I discover from him, the more excited I get. His entire arc is pretty great.

Who do you personally think Meliorn is? What do you think drives him and how will that affect things going forward?

I think he has self-control, for sure. He is very centered as a being. I think he is very wise but somewhat detached from the drama of things. The closer it gets to him personally, the more involved he gets but he’s still pretty detached. I think that’s a quality that being a Faerie has, to just kind of observe and watch because they’ve been alive for a long time. They know that rushing into things isn’t the best path. He has that wisdom.

I do think he loves Isabelle. I think he’s also noble. He’ll do things out of love and others out of his nature. Faeries are half angel, half demon, so he’s the combination.

As a fan of the series and being his portrayer do you have a personal team for Meliorn? Do you think that he belongs with Isabelle or Camille?

I don’t want to spoil anything, so I’m going to be careful with this one. (laughs). I think in the show, the Faeries are fluid and free, even with Isabelle; they don’t really want to be attached to anything. Free, open love. Do your thing, and I’ll do my thing, kind of thing.

What can you tease about his storyline the rest of the season?

We get more into the representative of the Seelie Court aspect of whom he is. You get to see more of the business side when things start getting serious. Plus things could form with Isabelle. 

Are we going to get to see more of the Seelie Court this season?

You’ve seen some of it so far. Then, the rest, you’ll have to wait and see.

Who has been your favorite cast member to act opposite on set?

I always think about that. I was thinking about that before you called. It’s such a great group of people and we have such a fun family vibe. I couldn’t say there’s a favorite because it’s such a group thing. The nature of the story itself, it’s about these friendships and relationships. I mean, I hope to interact and act with more of them because there are a lot of them that I met, but we didn’t have scenes together.

It’s cool. Each person brings something different. It’s been a lot of fun just to be Meliorn and to play with Dominic. The Meliorn/Jace back and forth banter is very cool to play. It’s such an odd friendship.

Now that you’ve read so much of the book and you’re more familiar with the world, excluding Meliorn, who is your favorite character?

Wow. I’d have to say there are three of them. I’ll give you reasons for them.

Clary is just fantastic. She’s just epic. Just her awakening throughout the story…

Magnus is just such an interesting character. He’s lived a long life, he has so much power, and he’s a very profound character. I love him.

Alec as well. Alec is one of my favorites. His storyline is great. Just finding whom you are and loving who you are and being proud of whom you are and finding love and all that stuff. And also dealing with mortality and being with Magnus. Magnus is immortal and Alec will grow old and eventually die.

All those things are just great. So, that’s it.

As a cast, you guys have talked about how there are going to be changes from the book, but that at the core, you guys are still telling the same story. Things might not happen the same way they did in the book, but you’re still staying true to the world Cassandra Clare wrote. What has been your favorite change that Shadowhunters has made?

Meliorn isn’t really even supposed to be there yet. You know? It’s really cool to get to see new things that he does or how he’s involved. I love that we’re already introducing the Seelie world into the mix. That’s been really cool to see. Hopefully, we’ll get to do the storyline that was written in the books. We’ll probably do some of it at least.

Also, let’s see. It’s really interesting because our show is so different from the book. Things have to develop. I think they do a great job linking to the future by bringing in characters from the City of Bones sequels. They plant some seeds so that you can have the story. But they do want to tell the main story. We do have a great arc that’s already there. I find that the essence of that world is very there.

With the ratings that you guys are getting, Season Two is highly likely. What would you like to happen? What would you like to see happen for Meliorn in Season Two?

That’s very tough to answer without spoiling. But … Like I said, I hope Meliorn interacts with more of the characters next season. I just hope we get a Season Two. I really, really, really want it to continue because it’s such an epic story and it just needs to be told. It’s going to be such a good ride for everybody. When you accept that it’s just a different way of telling a story, and you just go for the ride, I mean, it’s great. Hopefully, it’ll happen.

You just finished filming That’s My DJ. Is there an airdate? When will it be available online?

It’s been such a good time. It really honestly has been a turning point in my life and in my career to shoot Season Three. I’m so, so excited. I can tell you that it’s going to be an early summer release for Season Two, which starred Emily Piggford who plays Meagan.

Season 2 focuses on Meagan and Sam working as party promoters/music producers. They create a new party called Homebrew and in the midst, Meagan falls in love with the wrong person. Though she cannot help it. Which distracts her from her life’s work! It’s about heartbreak while staying strong and continuing on.

Then Season Three is my character’s season, Sam. You follow Sam through his struggle to juggle his professional life and his socialite/party life. He keeps getting knocked down by unexpected life situations. It’s Sam’s journey, finding his path, and re-evaluating what truly matters.

Let’s say early Summer release of Season Two and then we’re going to kind of wait a bit and have a release for Season Three after that.

We’ll be keeping everybody up to date on the release date and all the things that we want to do with it. It will be a natural progression. I’ll keep everyone posted on social media.

Besides That’s My DJ and Shadowhunters, music-wise or television-wise, is there anything else you’re working on that you can share?

There’s a great series called Orphan Black that’s coming back for its fourth season. I have a little cameo in it. It’s just a little small appearance. It was so much fun to shoot.

Then, if people like video games, there’s the some video game stuff, but I can’t say anything about it beyond that. A lot of it’s like body and voice and things like that. The game is already out.

There is a new music project called KIQS and Tom and Dex (two other members of DK Midas) have been working at it while I’ve been busy shooting and traveling. That’s all I can say for now! But I’ve heard the new stuff and I’m a fan.

I want to continue growing, there’s some things that I have coming, comics and stuff like that, but I’m slowly, slowly holding back and will be releasing stuff as I go. I don’t really have a clear path. I’m just going with it. There are a lot of projects in the mix. I just can’t wait to start revealing some stuff.

 

Shadowhunters airs Tuesday at 9 pm/8c on Freeform, and Wednesday’s internationally on Netflix.

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