Alberto Rosende & Emeraude Toubia on “Shadowhunters” Changes from Book to Screen

When Shadowhunters premieres in 2016 on Freeform, fans of the source material will be happy to know that the adaptation’s first season will cover a bit of all of the books and not just City of Bones.

OMFGTV sat down with Alberto Rosende and Emeraude Toubia recently in New York where they teased some of the differences fans can look forward to.

Toubia promises that though there will be some changes, the characters will remain the same. “It’s really nice because in the series, we’re true to the characters,” she says, “and [author] Cassandra Clare created these amazing characters.” She also adds that these characters are “going to go to places that neither the book or the movie really went to.”

freeform-shadowhungers-nycc-alberto-rosende-emeraude-toubiaAlberto Rosende, who plays Simon Lewis, welcomes the changes, calling it “exciting.” Rosende has read the books and knows where his character is going, so having new story developments that are slightly skewed from the original plotline keeps him on his toes.

“When [Simon] goes in a different direction or when something that hasn’t happened in the books that we didn’t get to explore happens on the show, it’s fun! [Cassandra] wrote that whole world so well [and] I understood what happened [in the books], but [on the show] I get to kind of explore that for myself more than having someone who told me what happens.”

One of the big changes Shadowhunters will have is its prominent feature on their character’s familial relationships. “Isabelle’s relationship with her mom in the series is different,” Toubia reveals. “It’s not how it’s written in the book because we want to take it to places. We want to grow that relationship. But her relationship with her brother is the same. She loves him, she’s willing to die for him. It shows how selfless Shadowhunters are– that they’re willing to risk their lives to save others. I love that family relationship.”

As for Simon, Rosende describes the changes regarding his family as “interesting.” He explains that Simon’s mother doesn’t really appear until the 4th book, and his sister, the 5th. “But [in the series] they’re bringing [them] in right away. And when Simon starts going through those changes that we all kind of know about, I’m interested to see how that’s going to affect him because he’s very much a family person. It’s going to be really fun to explore that.”

In addition to these changes, Emeraude also reveals that Isabelle gets to do different things that weren’t in the books. “I don’t know how to say it without spoiling it!” she says with a laugh. “She’s not only the sexy badass, she gets to play other roles. There’s different worlds that happen so she gets to be different things, but we still always go back to the Shadowhunter world.”

“It’s going to be very interesting and I can’t wait for the cast and the fans to see it.”

Shadowhunters premieres Tuesday, January 12, at 9pm on Freeform.

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Additional Reporting & Photo By: Taraneh Djangi