11:00 am EDT, March 2, 2019

‘Shadowhunters’ season 4 cancelled: How we got here

If there is hope for a Shadowhunters season 4, we’re all ears. But the twisted story of how we got here makes this business we call show painful to face.

There was a brief moment in time, back in May 2018, when Shadowhunters season 3 was on a roll. Headed into the mid-season hiatus, the series had just finished its strongest run of episodes and was gearing up to deliver an equally exciting back half. As fans sat through announcement after announcement of renewals across networks, the sudden cancellation of Shadowhunters shattered all illusions of grandeur.

On June 4, 2018, Shadowhunters was cancelled and officially not renewed for season 4. The final 12 episodes were pushed back to air in 2019 and a 2-hour finale wrap order was granted by the network. The Shadowhunters season 4 premiere may never appear on Freeform, but the passion of the fans made its mark.

Why was ‘Shadowhunters’ cancelled?

Shadowhunters season 4 is not coming to Freeform after negotiations with Netflix, a major financial partner for output of the series, did not result in a renewal of its commitment to financing the series. Netflix’s partnership with Freeform allows the streamer to premiere new episodes internationally a day after they air in America. The main production company of the series, Constantine Film, was not able to reach a deal with the parent network, Freeform, for more money.

Over the course of a few months, Constantin Film attempted to seek out other possibilities for financing, but could not find another partner. They continued the search until the company released an official statement in August 2018 that this iteration of The Mortal Instruments would not be able to continue.

A snippet reads, “Regrettably for all involved, Shadowhunters must come to an end. While we are trying to figure out new ways and new incarnations in which to bring the Shadow World to fans worldwide, we are sad to say that after many efforts by all parties involved, it’s not possible for this version of Shadowhunters to continue.”

Will ‘Shadowhunters’ get a season 4?

shadowhunters season 4

Right now, the odds are not in the fandom’s favor. The series wrapped production on the final two episodes and has begun the journey towards saying goodbye. Speaking with Todd Slavkin and Darren Swimmer, the co-showrunners and executive producers of the series, Hypable learned that the finale, while it is meant to close the door on this chapter, leaves some room for endless possibilities.

Related: EPs Todd Slavkin and Darren Swimmer emotional journey of Shadowhunters season 3

The back half of season 3 will see new ships sail, new adventures for some of your favorite characters, but most importantly it will continue to foster the development of the people we’ve come to love. The events of the season 3A finale left enough destruction and emotional devastation to sustain 10 more seasons.

But for now, it’s time to focus in on the fallout and how the characters will navigate the next chapter of their lives.

What the Shadow Fam has to say

The fans are not ready to say goodbye, and when the news broke, neither were the actors. The cast, crew, and fans took to Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and the sky (literally) to let the world know what the series meant to them.

Dominic Sherwood: Jace

Katherine McNamara: Clary

Brian Hui: Makeup artist on the series

Aisha Porter-Christie: Writer on the series

Freeform had a harder time saying goodbye to the series. Faced with the backlash of cancellation, the network went radio silent about Shadowhunters. For months the show was excluded from Freeform’s streaming platform advertisements, official Twitter accounts, and more.

With a fanbase rabid for footage from 3B and any promotional material, the network made another misstep airing a controversial comment about Shadowhunters fans during its 25 Days of Christmas programming. An official apology was issued.

Save ‘Shadowhunters’ grabs the world’s attention

Is there another fandom like the Shadowhunters fandom? The series drew out the hearts and souls of Cassandra Clare’s characters, translating them into some of the most compelling stories on television. The actors, writers, and crew poured their passion into the series, and that feeling has extended to touch many, many lives.

In response to the cancellation news, fans were rightfully upset. There was shock, pain, sadness. But those feelings grew into support, camaraderie, and activism. The fandom poured their reactions into art, fundraising, and grassroots efforts to campaign for change.

Some of these efforts included billboards, subway advertisements, and raising nearly $30,000 for the Trevor Project along the way.

The Shadowhunters family gave back a piece of themselves to the fans with a permanent installation in Central Park. A bench to commemorate the support and love of their fans.

Just like the characters in the series, the Shadow Fam outside of the show works to make the world a better place for everyone. The cast and creators are the first to acknowledge the profound respect and admiration they have for fans of the show. Nothing quite compares to the spark that Shadowhunters ignited in the fan community.

For more ‘Shadowhunters’ season 3 news

Check out our interviews with the cast for more insights on what to expect in the final season of Shadowhunters:

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