Shadowhunters is a new supernatural drama based on The Mortal Instruments book series by Cassandra Clare. The highly anticipated series will premiere on the Freeform network (formerly ABC Family) on January 12, 2016 at 9/8c with the episode “The Mortal Cup.”
Shadowhunters follows 18-year old Clary Fray (Katherine McNamara). When the past of her mother (Maxim Roy), comes back to haunt the Fray family, Clary learns that the world around her is not what it seems. Clary discovers that there’s a Shadow World, unseen by most humans, that includes supernatural creatures such as demons, vampires, werewolves, warlocks, and faeries.
Clary and her best friend Simon (Alberto Rosende) meet a group of Shadowhunters, a race of humans with the blood of angels who protect the living from demons and maintain order in the Shadow World. Mercurial shadowhunter Jace Wayland (Dominic Sherwood), hunts demons alongside the Lightwood Twins, Isabelle (Emeraude Toubia) and Alec (Matthew Daddario). Additional cast includes Alan Van Sprang as Valentine Morgenstern, Harry Shum Jr. as Magnus Bane, and Isaiah Mustafa as Luke Garroway.
Shadowhunters is produced by Constantin Film, with executive producers Ed Decter (Unforgettable, The Client List) and McG (The Mysteries of Laura, Supernatural, Chuck). McG also directs “The Mortal Cup.”
Though there will be differences from the book series, Shadowhunters will remain loyal to the novels. In a response to a question from TVLine, ABC Family president Tom Ascheim, “When you’re adapting, you always have to find the balance of being loyal and giving them something new, and I think we’ve found a good balance.” In an interview with TMI Source at the 2015 New York Comic Con, Showrunner Ed Decter talked about using the characters from The Mortal Instruments books in a different combination, while still delivering the big moments that readers expect. He described the challenge of staying true to the vision of the book, while going deeper to enhance the story.
“The most challenging part of doing something that has this passionate a fan base is delivering what they’re hoping for and being true to the characters and really honoring Cassandra’s work, but also delivering some surprises. So we’re sort of hoping that the fans will go, ‘Wait a minute, that didn’t happen in the book! Oh…I see where they’re going with that,’ and it ends up where I’m dreaming it would end up.”
To learn more about Shadowhunters watch the promotional trailer and the behind-the-scenes video “Beyond the Shadows: The Making of Shadowhunters.”