We recently had the opportunity to chat with the Jade about Meliorn, his Indiegogo funded project, and Buffy The Vampire Slayer. Read our interview below!
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How did you get involved with That’s My DJ?
“I moved to Toronto about three years ago. I started meeting different people in the industry, different artists that become their projects and promote their own stuff and want to collaborate with others and create things. I just ran into my friend, Kristin Waterson. I started to gravitate around her and what she was doing, and went to a screening of That’s MY DJ season one. I wasn’t involved with it at all. I was a fan of it. Then just naturally, through life, Kristin and I became friends. She’s a great DJ in the city. Her DJ name is Hey! DW. We started collaborating on parties, one called Home Brew that she created. I drew all the posters for them. It kind of just all merged together. Next thing I knew, a year later she sat me down and she said, “So we’re doing That’s My DJ Season 3, and you’re going to be in both of them. You will be the lead for third season.” [Laughs].”
You’re in the second season as well?
“Yeah. I’m more of a supporting role in the second season. The cool thing about the series is in every season you’ll see it following a different character’s perspective. Like on the show Skins. In season two, you follow Megan’s character and then season three, Sam’s. It changes each time but you’re still within the same world. You’re just seeing it through a different lens.”
Can you tell us a little bit about your character?
“Yeah my character is Sam, he is a young professional. He’s so passionate about music, about creating music, he wants to be a, well he is a producer in a recording studio. He works for a different artist, but he has his own music coming up. Him and his friend and business partner Megan, they promote and create a party called Home Brew.
That’s the other interesting thing, the show reflects reality a lot. You’ll be seeing a lot of spots around Toronto, you’ll be hearing about different electronic mass music parties and artists and things that you would find in Toronto. It’s very familiar to someone living in the city.”
You guys reached your Indiegogo goal! That’s pretty amazing. Is there anything you want to say to the fans?
“We are SO PUMPED!! Thank you to everyone who donated or shared or just mentioned their support. We wouldn’t have done it without you. We’re glad you’re part of the team. And it’s amazing what can be done when we join together. Some of you will be able to join us on set and be at the launch party to watch the new seasons. We will keep you posted online throughout the shooting process. I am proud of us and cannot wait to start shooting. The TMDJ team is full of young pros, and I’m excited to jump in. This is the first time I’m so involved in the production. Everyone felt the love. Truly. Very much. We are still all buzzing from the excitement. Let’s make season 2 – 3!! Watch for updates on twitter.”
Switching gears, we have to talk about Shadowhunters! What was your audition process like for Shadowhunters?
“It was pretty fantastic, it lasted a month. It was very unexpected. This pilot season was big, probably the biggest one for me so far. I did lots of auditions for different shows, a lot of really great stuff. You’re told not to get attached to a project, since it might not pan out. I did this audition for Shadowhunters, but I didn’t know much about it. I auditioned as Alaric at first. I sent the tape to the casting directors, it wasn’t much at the time, a friend helped me with my tape.
About a week later I heard back from them asking me to audition for Raphael instead. I was like WOW, even cooler, I thought. Raphael’s part is even cooler. Then I got invested in the show, and I discovered what it was about and just got deep into it. I went for the Raphael audition, and I got a call back for Meliorn, actually. That was a week after that, so already three weeks had passed. Then you know I read Meliorn’s part and I thought again, EVEN BETTER! This is exactly the part I wanted! I really wanted the role, and then I started seeing the hype online. I got so excited. But I tried to continue focusing on the work. I went in to do Meliorn, and got a call back. Then I sent my tape to LA and waited to hear back. Got the news that I was one of the choices for Meliorn, and then I had to wait a whole weekend [laughs]. On Monday I got the call.
You never know with these things so you can’t get too excited. Usually, everyone tells me to not get attached to a project and audition because anything can happen. Anyone can get it because there’s a lot of potential great actors for it. For this one, I would read about the story and I would look at the picture of the cast that was already there and get these goosebumps all over my body. Just knowing that I was part of it, you know. I tried to do the best work that I could to represent what I felt was right and it worked!”
Have you read the series now?
“I am deep into it, but not as deep as everyone would love me to be. I’m on book three right now. I’m trying not to read too much about it before I get to it because there’s so much more online and stuff. I’m loving it a lot and I’ve just, I can’t believe I’m part of this epic saga. It’s really fantastic.”
Do you think the fact you hadn’t read it at first helped you get the role? Since you were bringing your own character into it instead of trying to be exactly who Cassandra wrote?
“Yes. That’s a great question. Yes. It was good that I didn’t really know how big the series was and how big the show already was. I kind of went into it very relaxed. I was in the state of, do your job, be the actor, work on your scene, deliver the work and go home.
You’re right, not reading it, let’s you reach into your own creative mind instead of what’s already out there. I think that intuitively I was on the right track. Perhaps they saw that in my previous auditions or just knew I could do the role.
All the roles are very different, I think that David and Joel are perfect for Alaric and Raphael. I’m so glad that Meliorn was the right one for me.”
Did you know any fairy mythology before getting this role or was this all new?
“It seems like this world is very special in that regard. It reminds me very much of the elves that we usually talk of and see in epic movies and things. Yes, I’ve always been a fan of fairies and magical creatures. Ask anyone, I would tell you that my dream role was to play some type of fairy, elf being. I think it’s right up my alley.
I’ve read a bunch of things. I remember this book in my high school library that I used to look at. I don’t know who wrote it, but it was different legends, different folk fairy stories and different images of all kinds of fairies! It was just so interesting.”
Have you filmed a scene yet?
How many episodes will you be in?
“I think I am in a little less than half the season. My character is spread out through season 1. We’re introducing the fairy world very slowly to start, so you get a little taste. They introduce me differently than they do in the book. You will get a different introduction to the Seelie Court. I think that’s what I can say.”
Can you tell us how you’re introduced?
Okay. Is that who you have your first scene with?
“Yes, it is. Emeraude is the coolest. We really clicked and had a lot of fun.”
What is your favorite song at the moment?
“Wow. Where Are Ü Now by Skrillex & Diplo feat. justin Bieber. It’s a great song. I think the music scene right now is doing really well. It’s been just party music, it’s working.”
Do you like filming in Toronto?
“I think Toronto is an up and coming city. Something’s happening here right now, for a lot of us. Especially with the weekends. Scenes are coming up and a lot of productions are coming here, so there’s a buzz in the air and that’s what attracted me to Toronto in the first place, when I moved here about three years ago. It’s just perfect. I’m really glad to be here. There’s exciting things happening.
It’s funny that I’m part of That’s My DJ and also it kind of reflects my life in a way. I have not revealed this yet but I’m with a group called DK MIDAS and we have music coming out. We actually posted it already, but I haven’t announced it yet. I think on Monday we’ll do the announcement on Twitter or something. I just meet a lot of different artists collaborating around the city, walking next to each other and being inspired by each other. Creating these really, great, inspiring things. Just the energy that I feel here is pretty magical.”
I feel like Canadian actors tend to stick together and really support each other and work together often. Versus actors in LA, they’re not this tight knit group. Do you think that for Shadowhunters, because you guys are filming in Canada that you guys are that tight knit group and kind of like a family already?
“Good point. Yes I think so. Especially since most of them are from out of town and they’re staying here. Automatically it is kind of a family vibe. Most of them are on set almost everyday. I don’t know, I think it works differently in Canada than it does in the States for actors. I couldn’t be an actor without this network around me, the people that are around me, are so talented, so loving and we always help each other for auditions and just for creative mental, emotional, soul support. It really, really, really helps. You just see friends rising around you and it just, it brings everyone up together as a web.”
For Shadowhunters, do you have to have an accent, or do you get to speak in your normal dialect?
“I get to talk in my regular voice. I feel like when I create a character in my body I automatically sort of shift my voice or my speech in a certain way. Also, depending on who wrote the script – the writer will give Meliorn a different voice. The way he talks and things, but I mean that’s my job to make it all seem the same.
It was a cool, funny thing in that I was born in Lebanon. I moved away when I was a kid. Montreal is where I grew up. I have somewhat of an accent in all the languages that I speak. For this one, I was told, they heard something in my voice and they said, you know it’s interesting for this part. It is not everyday that I hear that [laughs].”
If you could star on a show with anyone dead or alive, who would it be?
“It would be Sarah Michelle Geller and it would be as good as Buffy the Vampire Slayer was!”
Would you want to go back and just redo Buffy with her?
“No I don’t think so. Buffy is the perfect series the way it is! I’m a total fan boy. That’s my fandom. People were asking about it, that is my fandom. I’m a total Buffy fanatic [laughs]!”
Did you have a preference between Spike and Angel?
“Oh, good question. Wow. Oh my gosh, that’s going to get me in so much trouble. I love both of them very much. I really love Spike. I think Spike’s journey is incredible and I was very inspired by Spike and by the actor who played him, as an actor as a kid.
I like the story line, and I don’t know, if anyone else is following the Season ten, Buffy comics. It’s evolving still today. It’s funny because right now what’s happening in the comics is about that, it’s the Angel and Spike thing. I think it’s always going to evolve. I think that she needs both of them in her life because they represent very different, contrasting things about herself.”
Since you do cartoon artwork, would you like to write or draw your own comic book series?
“Yes that is definitely in the plan. I have some cool projects coming up, I don’t know the time frame because I’m busy. I am definitely working on that and it’s always been one of my dreams. I have lots of stories to tell, but I don’t know when all that’s going to happen. Right now, going with the momentum and then I’ll try to switch to the comics.”
Would you rather live in a world without books or without movies?
“Oh man, that’s hard. Wow. Just because of the potential of the human imagination and how strong it is, and I think that’s the source of what makes movies, I think I would have to live in a world where only books exist. I can’t remove books from it because then there would be no movies.”
Did you draw any of the runes?
“Oh man. I wish. No, this is all part of the awesome design team. It’s really great, they make all the tattoos for the actors. When I went to get my ear molds, my prosthetic ears, all the rune tattoos were on the wall. It was so great. I wanted to take a photo and show everybody but I don’t think I’m allowed to. There’s definitely great artists there. I would love to do it, but maybe later on. There’s cool artists on there you’ll see. I even have a cool henna tattoo at one point that people will see eventually.”
Shadowhunters premieres on ABC Family in 2016!
To learn more about That’s My DJ click here.