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?
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.
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
All good things come to an end. It has been my privelidge to be a part of this world. @ShadowhuntersTV team have been so close to my heart for 3 years. You. The fans. Make us happy and strong and proud. Thank you. For everything. We say goodbye with a heavy heart but our heads…
— Dominic Sherwood (@DomSherwood1) June 5, 2018
Katherine McNamara: Clary
— Katherine McNamara (@Kat_McNamara) June 5, 2018
Brian Hui: Makeup artist on the series
Seems appropriate to repost this pic! Going to be super positive and say how much I enjoyed being part of the SH family this season! Love every single member of the crew and cast… and the fans….the fans are the best! 😘@ShadowhuntersTV pic.twitter.com/LSjv8oQHjO
— Brian Hui (@BriBriGuy23) June 5, 2018
Aisha Porter-Christie: Writer on the series
Such a privilege to have been part of this series. The upcoming episodes are truly something special. Cheers to my @ShadowhuntersWR family, cast, crew and the DOPEST fans on the planet. ♥️ #Shadowhunters https://t.co/q82ZvDx8f0
— AishaPorterChristie (@NappyThoughtz) June 5, 2018
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.
For you angels,a place in @CentralParkNYC to call our own. A place for the #Shadowfam. A place for love. A place for all from us to you as a thank you&a statement of our love and admiration for each of you. YOU are our angels.🖤 #Shadowhunterslegacy @shadowhunterstv @FreeformTV pic.twitter.com/vh9FDuxAP0
— Katherine McNamara (@Kat_McNamara) February 25, 2019
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:
- Shadowhunters 3×11 begins the slow, painful healing process
- Shadowhunters’ Alisha Wainwright on the importance of getting Maia’s story right
- Shadowhunters interview: Luke Baines on resurrecting Jonathan, drawing inspiration from the fans