INTERVIEW: Shadowhunters’ Producers Discuss the Final Episodes


What’s your guess as to Malec’s happy ending for the finale?

Happy Shadowhunters premiere day everyone! The day has finally arrived when all-new episodes (sadly final) are back on our TV screens! Seeing how things ended in the 3A finale and what we’ve seen in the trailers as of late, a lot is going to occur in these last round of episodes.

Luckily for us and you fellow ShadowFam members, we got the chance to speak with the executive producers of the series, Todd Slavkin and Darren Swimmer, and they let us in on what’s to come for our favorite ships, characters, and for the finale overall!

First off, we’re really sad to hear about the cancellation. Have you been surprised at all by the reactions from the fans? I mean the #SaveShadowhunters Campaign has been pretty huge actually.

Todd Slavkin: “Well we knew they would be shocked and sad. We knew there’d be a groundswell when we heard. But we had no idea how big it would be and how grand it would be. The airplanes flying above Netflix, the billboards in Korea, I mean mind blowing! Really feeling honored by it and blessed by it and inspired by it. And it’s such a beautiful thing, we don’t take it lightly. We’ve been doing this for awhile, we’ve done a lot of different shows. And to have a show that’s made this kind of impact, where fans are so moved to action. And not just by the billboards, but by donating money to these amazing causes and by you know celebrating diversity and all of that stuff, inclusion and everything that it’s created has been – it’s just awesome! Kudos to the fandom, really.”

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe I heard that the finale was kind of open ended a little bit, just in case there was an eleventh hour reprieve. But as it doesn’t look like that’s happening, at least not yet, will it feel like a real satisfying finale for the fans?

Darren Swimmer: “Yeah, we think that it will satisfy and we always wanted it to feel on one hand like it was the end of a story and on the other hand, like it was continuing on and on. And it wasn’t so much that we thought there was going to be an eleventh hour reprieve, as much as we didn’t know in any way shape or form how this story could continue even if it was only in people’s imaginations and fan fiction. We want it to be a living story and keep going.”

Slavkin: “And knowing how creative the fans are, we know that we’ve opened up these doors; they’ll continue their own imaginations – like Darren said with fiction or art and stuff. You could spin it for years.”


Can Clary be saved in 3B?

Is there anything that had to change once that you knew that the end was coming? The way any story-lines played out? Maybe not getting into specifics, but that you had to go back and re-address so that there was a conclusion to them?

Slavkin: “It didn’t really change, it just accelerated a couple things, you know? But it didn’t really change, we always, the past that we ended up on were things that we always wanted to explore. We just didn’t expect to have to do it in a short time. But I don’t think the fans will feel rushed. I think that the Shadowhunters writing team and us have crafted a story that feels really elegant and grounded and gets you to the point you want to be, without feeling that you’ve just like accelerated to a million miles an hour just to achieve, an endgame. And I think we’re really proud of it. We think it will, it’s a really great way to send off the show.”

Okay, so now we’re going to get into the part where I try and get information out of you and you have to avoid answering everything, right?

Swimmer: “Please do.”

So I know obviously there’s been teases of, there’s a wedding coming at the end. I’m not even going to try and get you to tell me who it is, because obviously that’s part of the tease. But what can you tell us? What should the fans expect from it?

Slavkin: “There’s a reception. There’s-”

Swimmer: “I mean I can say that it just purely as, ’cause Todd directed it, and this is Darren speaking. Todd directed it and when I saw the footage and I was just thinking, ‘Wow, the fans are gonna love this.’ Whoever it is that’s getting married. Like I have no idea to this day who it actually is. But it came out really special.”

Slavkin: “There’s just a lot of joy; it’s a beautiful thing to do at the end of a show, you know? ‘Cause you also get to see so many people that have been on the show, which is really nice.”

Is there anyone special that came back that you were really happy you were able to get? Or can you not talk about that?

Slavkin: “Who have we got? I mean literally like so many people. It was really great and so cool to do.”

Swimmer: “And it was a scheduling nightmare.”

Slavkin: “Yeah, complete scheduling nightmare.”

I could imagine with everyone all around.

Slavkin: “‘Cause everyone’s doing a ton of things, but yeah, we were pleased.”

The trailer teases what appears to be a demon Clary. What can you tell us about how that’s going to affect her relationship with Jace?

Slavkin: “Well it’s hard to date someone with the demon blood boiling, I’ll tell you that. Although what’s really cool about it, is it’s like, it doesn’t negate her feelings, unlike the Owl, which we did, right? Like Jace became this different person, it was like the Owl was totally different. It’s still Clary, so she still has these feelings. It’s not like she doesn’t recognize Jace or she’s trying to pretend. And I think it’s so interesting and Kat McNamara did such a great job of grounding it as this real person, that’s feeling these urges, in part of her blood, part of her like organs and genes. It’s not easy.


How do you think the Sizzy sparks will come ablaze?

After three seasons, we’re finally getting to see Simon and Isabelle together. It’s been highly anticipated since the very beginning of the season. Can you talk a little bit about what it’s been like teasing that epic slow burn and finally getting to deliver on it?

Swimmer: “One thing that we wanted to do is after all the time and anticipation, we didn’t want to make it feel like the two characters were just fulfilling some prophecy. We wanted it to feel organic and real and that it was coming out of a true friendship, a true bond.”

Slavkin: “And it’s interesting because that’s kind of been an M.O. on the show, if you think about it, I’m just realizing now. Clary and Simon, I know it wasn’t like a thing. But like Maia and Simon, they were friends first, you know? They like built this thing before it does turn into something else. And I think it’s a testament to the feeling that that’s a stronger relationship when you have that support system behind it all as like a friendship.

Swimmer: “Yeah, then you have Malec who fell in love instantly.”

Slavkin: “Right, that’s different.”

Swimmer: “That’s also a good way to start a relationship.”

Slavkin: “And Clace is alluded to that, too. But when it comes to Simon, he’s such a friend, you know? He’s just like a guy that becomes your buddy and then it becomes something more.”

Well, you mentioned Malec, obviously they’ve been really really well received and they’re really popular ship in the show. Were you surprised at how well received they are? And what can you tease us about that?

Slavkin: “I don’t think we were too surprised. I mean, they’re incredible actors. They’re both such beautiful people and the idea of a 23 year old human and a 600 or 700 year old warlock is like such a cool way of showing a couple fall in love. And the writing, you know we inherited the show in season two, so you already have that Malec kiss. We already saw the chemistry those actors had and I think our deal was just to deepen it and to just explore all of those issues that came up in an angsty way with so much love. I think it celebrated it in a way that was beautiful and people yearned to see that it’s not just a show about a gay couple, it wasn’t about them being this gay couple. They each had their lives and they were so intricate in the plot and the story beyond just what their relationship was. Which is just like good story-telling. And I think people like that about the actors and I just think the love between them is so palpable, you know? Like in the looks and stuff and the performances that Matt and Harry do such a great job of it, that like when I was directing the finale and these moments between them, it still worked after this amount of time. Their built-in chemistry is just off the hook.”


With the information Todd and Darren provided, do you have any theories as to how certain plot-lines might occur over the course of these final episodes? Leave them in the comments below!

Thanks again to Todd Slavkin and Darren Swimmer for taking the time to answer these questions!

Shadowhunters returns tonight at 8/7c on Freeform.