Written By: Jayme Face
Jade Hassoune can be seen as Meliorne on Freeform’s Shadowhunters. He is also this season’s star on That’s my DJ and we caught up with him on all his latest projects!
upfrontNY: Can you tell us about Shadowhunters and your character Meliorn?
Jade Hassoune: Yeah, so Shadowhunters is based on a book series called The Mortal Instruments. The story we are doing is the original Mortal Instruments story which is six books and it’s an international hit. There’s a huge fandom around the world which is really cool. We’re the second adaptation of that series into film version and then it got renewed and now it’s a TV show. Basically there is a race of angel human hybrids that have angel blood that fight demons and protect the humans from the demons. There are other creatures that have angel blood as well as human blood, things like warlocks, fairies, vampires, things like that. I’m a fairy, which is basically an elf and my name is Meliorne. He is a fairy knight who represents the queen of the fairies.
upfrontNY: Did you read the books The Mortal Instruments before being on the show?
Jade Hassoune: I wasn’t a reader, but I was aware of them and I remember seeing them around. At first it didn’t really click when I first auditioned for the show what this is until my second round of auditions. The first audition was just a self-tape and then when I got called back to read for a second character I realized what it was. I was so excited to fall deep into it and immerse myself into the world. I’m already a fantasy freak, but it’s always cool to discover a new mythology.
UpfrontNY: You are also a comic book creator; can you tell us about your comic books?
Jade Hassoune: Yeah, totally. I love comics and I love doing them. As a kid I would naturally create endless stories and books and things like that. I went back to cartooning school and I got my first certificate. I have more of a technical handle on things. My thing is I have too many ideas. I start a lot of them, but I haven’t really completed one entirely. So, my goal now is focus on one story. I think it will finally start happening with me more now because I’ve found a home base in Montreal. I’m going to spend more time to sit and do that. I’m excited. I have so many ideas, it’s just a matter of choosing one.
upfrontNY: Can you tell us about That’s My DJ?
Jade Hassoune: That’s My DJ is a webseries on YouTube, free for everyone to see. It’s very cool. It’s in an internet format, so it’s very quick. An entire season runs only about 30 to 40 minutes. It started about 5 years ago and then I got added to the story in season two and three. I was an associate producer, involved in raising money. The creator is D. W. Waterson and it’s based kind of on her life DJing in Toronto. I would say the second season is kind of like Skins meets Shameless. Every season follows a different character. There is a lead character that is different for each season, so you have a different perspective. We just released season three and I’m so honored and excited to be the lead. It’s my first series lead. The third season goes very dark. Each season gets better in terms of everything as far as filmography, performances, everything. Seasons two and three kind of go together because we shot them very close to each other and they were kind of like a packaged deal. It’s a quick thing for people to binge it, all three seasons even, and I’m super proud of it. I’m very excited to see what’s going to happen with it. Every first episode of each season starts as first person perspective, so you’re inside the character and you get to walk around. You know, you’re inside the eyes of the character for the first episode. It’s very cool.
upfrontNY: How did you get into acting and the arts?
Jade Hassoune: My mom’s father was a painter in Lebanon back in like the 60s or 70s. So, I had that influence of art on my mom’s side. She loved music and she’s a pianist. It’s in my blood I guess. I never really considered doing art for a job until I discovered that acting was a possibility and then I became obsessed with it. It was when I was ten years old that I confidently decided my path because I felt this connection when I went on stage. I did an elementary school play or a community theatre play and I felt this creativity, the flow of creativity. It makes yourself feel good, like this is it this is what I need and want. I kind of get that feeling from all the arts, but acting was the most practical. I realized I could do it and so I made it my main quest. Then I did everything I could do in high school. I did all the plays and dancing the MCing. I tried to always be involved in something like that because I had this goal. I went to theatre school and at the same time I was training to be a dancer as well, but acting included all the other arts, so it made sense to me. Then I graduated from theatre school. I started working and realized ‘Oh man this thing I was after, this feeling, this creativity feeling I feel in my heart, that’s what I’m after. I got to create a strong foundation and it’s growing. I think it’s cool.
upfrontNY: You were a dancer on Canada’s Got Talent; will we see more dance projects from you or maybe see you dance on Shadowhunters?
Jade Hassoune: Well in season one I got to do kind of a magical opening of a portal and I got to move around and stuff that was very fun. Yeah, I think so. I haven’t been dancing as much as I used to. I was training full time. I was on a competition team, but yeah I’ve been really aching for it and really need it again. There’s something about being in a dance studio with other people you can’t really describe. You’re definitely going to see me do that more on the social media aspect where I’ll be posting videos of rehearsal. I’d love to one day be in a musical TV show or something where dancing, singing and all that is involved.
upfrontNY: You’ve worked with Ubisoft for video game technology; how does that work and are you into video games yourself?
Jade Hassoune: I am a total gamer. It’s so much fun. It’s basically the technology that they use to create the Avatar movie. Everyone has a suit on that tracks their movement and everybody also has a helmet that captures their facial expressions. Then you have this rectangular studio, called the volume, and it captures all the movement. There’s cameras all around and there’s stable cameras all around as well as camera men moving around you. It’s really cool because it’s like a film or a TV set, but also it’s like rehearsal space in like a black box theatre. It’s all imagination. The props are out of wood so you have to use your imagination which is the most fun because it’s like being a kid. There is a game that’s called Starlink Battle for Atlas and it’s going to come out soon. There’s one trailer for it right now and it’s a very awesome game. Its part of the new releases for Nintendo Switch, it’s also on Xbox one and PlayStation as well. I can’t really say much more other than this. That’s all I’m allowed to say, but I’m so so so so excited for it to come out!
Favorite Fast Five
- Comic Book– Habibi and Blankets by Craig Thompson
- Video Game– Kingdom Hearts
- Animal– Sealions
- Play– Scorched by a Lebanese, Montreal actor called Wajdi Mouawad
- Breakfast Food– Eggs
upfrontNY: Is there anything you would like to let our readers know?
Jade Hassoune: Don’t forget to watch That’s my DJ seasons two and three. I’m super excited for it. It’s already on YouTube for free. Keep an eye out on social media because I will be posting on there, mostly Instagram and twitter. Look out for Shadowhunters season 3. Keep an eye out, things are always evolving. There’s always something surprising coming, even for me. I’m excited to see what’s ahead!