I think it’s crazy that I even have fans! I’m just this shy asshole from Costa Rica who doesn’t know much about anything and now people are interested in what I have to say.
In celebration of our Fansite’s 1-year-anniversary, we’re bringing to you our EXCLUSIVE interview with the one and only (and the person this site is all about)- Harry Shum Jr.!
From the early stages of his career in the Step Up movies to hit series such as Fox‘s Glee and Freeform‘s Shadowhunters, Harry Shum Jr. stole our hearts from the first second he showed up on screen.
As the dancy High School Student Mike Chang or the Warrior Wei Fang in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny to a complete transformation turning into the magical High Warlock of Brooklyn, Magnus Bane..
We fell in love with them all, and the person behind all of these characters just made us fall deeper as he (Harry Shum Jr.) showed us his enormous care for each character he plays, his kindness and love towards his fans, the beauty in every dance move he makes and his big BIG heart.
As such big fans of him, it’s a pleasure to have gotten the chance to interview him. We asked him questions about his career that we were interested to know more about, and he gave us the perfect answers.
- We’d like to start the interview asking, how are you doing?
HSJ: I just consumed a large ca phe su da so I am WIRED.
- We know you’re currently working on the second half of season 2 of ‘Shadowhunters‘.
How has filming been? How’s it like working with the cast?
HSJ: Just wrapped the season and its a lot heavier in terms of subject matter compared to 2A. All the characters deal with some sort inner turmoil that they must confront and overcome. I think the fans will enjoy the journey. The cast is really great to work with. They all individually bring a different energy that allows the show to be unique and offer something that no other show does. It’s been fun to see the growth in not only the characters but the actors as well.
- Do you feel more connected to your character, Magnus, now that you’ve been playing him for 2 years?
And what is your favorite thing about him?
HSJ: Without getting too much into “actor talk” I have enjoyed and learned a lot over the span of two seasons getting to know Magnus. He has taught me that no matter how much you know or been alive for, you’re still a work in progress. I think in season one, we were introduced to a jaded and hardened Magnus. He was set in his ways and not much could change his mind. Season two, we find him opening his heart and mind to a once unthinkable relationship (Alec). It has given him a new perspective and insight to the world he was already so familiar with. I do love his sass which the writers have been bringing back. It’s been great to see a vulnerable side of him but his defense mechanism of making a joke out of dire situations was always fun to play.
- How do you feel about the impact that Malec have had on the LGBTQ+ community? And did you ever expect the show and the Malec storyline to become so popular?
HSJ: I think it’s incredible that the Magnus and Alec relationship has made an impact on not only the community but also outside of it. I usually root for the underdog story and to me this is one of them. The LGBTQ+ communities support has been amazing and what makes all the hard work worth it is hearing all the fan stories on how affected they are by these two characters.
- Obviously, you were on ‘Glee’ for 6 years. Do you sometimes miss Mike Chang? What are some of your favorite memories from set?
HSJ: Those 6 years were very special to me and I contribute a lot of my growth as an artist during that time. I have Mike Chang locked up in my basement so I see him occasionally on a full moon. He’s doing well, I think. My favorite memories on set were the breaks in between scenes. We would constantly try and entertain each other on a daily basis.
- You happened to also be in the opening show of the Glee tour with the LXD! Would you go back to working on the LXD series if you had the chance?
HSJ: In a heartbeat.
- Last year your film ‘Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny’ premiered. How was it like working on a movie you’ve already been a big fan of? And how was it like working with big talents such as Donnie Yen and Michelle Yeoh?
HSJ: I grew up watching Donnie and Michelle in HK movies and it was a bit surreal working with them. Their stories and advice on Eastern filmmaking and techniques for on camera fight sequences was invaluable. Yuen Woo Ping is a legend that has shaped the way martial arts has been captured on film. Also, it was a bit intimidating working with a 70 year young man that can kick my ass with one swift kick. I had the best time learning from him. I will carry that experience with me through the rest of my career.
- Last year, you worked on ‘Single By 30’ with WongFu Productions. The show was so fun to watch and we’re sad it won’t come back for a second season. It ended on a bittersweet note, that left us all wondering what is going to happen with Peter and Joanna. Do you have any theories on how their story continues?
HSJ: I think that Peter and Joanna still had a lot of growing to do together and individually. I would call them late bloomers that needed life to kick them in the ass a little more. Is it for their own good or for our viewing pleasure? I think both.
- This series was especially great for showcasing two Asian leads in a modern romantic comedy. How do you feel about the development of the Asian Community in the industry today, and what do you think Hollywood especially needs to change when it comes to Asian representation on TV and Film?
HSJ: Stories that come from real experiences from Asian-American writers/directors/actors. If that doesn’t happen then it’ll just continue to go down the road of what one thinks it should look like from a perspective of an outsider that will never equate to true empathy and full understanding of those experiences. That’s not to say that only Asian-Americans can tell those stories but we do need to strike a balance and it’s been lopsided since the birth of Hollywood. It’s not only tiring to see the same stereotypes but incredibly boring. The natural progression as the world becomes more connected is the need for more authentic stories told by an authentic voice in front AND behind the camera. It’s been encouraging to see how vocal audiences around the world have been over problematic castings and having some kind of impact on casting choices in the future. I have seen a spike in representation on tv and film but it’s just the beginning of the work that needs to be done.
- You’re coming from an immigrant family, your parents are from China but you were born in Costa Rica. How does it feel to be in such a culturally diverse family?
HSJ: I thank my parents all the time for exposing me to cultures that are nothing like my reflection. I was late to being exposed to the American culture and was in a constant culture shock for a good part of my adolescence. That shock was great because it taught me to realize that there is good and bad to every culture and not to put a label on a community by an individuals actions or beliefs.
- You’ve been a dancer for years! A part from being in the popular dance movies ‘Step Up’, you were a backup dancer for Beyoncé, Maria Carey and more. Can we expect to see any more dancing from you in the future?
HSJ: I’ll be dancing in my bathroom in a few hours while brushing my teeth.
- We know you recently talked about finishing your first script! Will we hear more about this? And are you planning to write more in the future or even try to direct?
HSJ: Writing is hard like all things that you’re new to. I have many stories I want to tell and I hope that I can share with the world in the near future.
- You’ve been married for awhile now to a talented, lovely lady, Shelby. How’s it like to be a married man?
HSJ: One of the best decisions that I have ever made.
- As you know, we are big fans of you. Do you have any celebrity that you look up to and that has influenced you in some kind of way?
HSJ: I have several for different reasons. JGL for his ability to jump into any medium and perform at a high caliber without compromising who he is. Matt Damon for his sustainability in this very weird weird business. The Rock for being a larger than life movie star with a heart of gold.
- Do you have any crazy fan story you can tell us?
HSJ: I think it’s crazy that I even have fans! I’m just this shy asshole from Costa Rica who doesn’t know much about anything and now people are interested in what I have to say. I’m very thankful to all the fans all around the world for accepting me into their lives. Here’s to more crazy adventures!
Thank you for reading and we hope you liked the interview! Share your thoughts with us in the comments or on our social media accounts!
Kinectic Vibe confirmed on their official Twitter that Harry Shum Jr. is one of the guests of their Shadowhunters convention in Milan, Italy on July 15-16. Harry will be joining his co-stars Matthew Daddario and Jade Hassouné at The Italian Institute Con for autograph sessions, photo op, panels and meet & greets. It’s an amazing opportunity to interact with the actors and meet more fans. The passes for the con cost 790€ – 50€ and you can also buy additional activities with the actors. Click here for more information.
Harry Shum Jr. and his Shadowhunters co-star Matthew Daddario are both featured on June/July 2017 OUT Magazine Issue, talking about their characters on the show, the relationship they formed and LGBT representation.
Harry Shum Jr.
FROM CHARMING GLEE CROONER TO BISEXUAL DEMON SLAYER
“Yup, he’s a bisexual warlock,” says Harry Shum Jr. of his 400-year-old character on the Freeform fantasy series Shadowhunters. “When you live that long, you have some stories.”
Ever since Anne Rice poured a sarcophagus’s worth of same-sex longing into her vampire novels, fans of the genre have jonesed for homoerotic acting among creatures of the night.
Shadowhunters has plenty of it. Shum plays Magnus, the immortal leader of a supernatural coven in modern-day New York City who pursues both demons and his mortal boyfriend, Alec (Matthew Daddario).
Magnus’s darkness was a big draw for the Glee vet, who was also eager to dive into a subculture- not bloodsuckers, but bi guys.
He links it to his own heritage. “Bisexuality isn’t really talked about in the mainstream,” he says.
“It’s like me being an Asian Latino American– there aren’t many of us.”
The 35-year-old actor’s main goal is to portray a queer relationship in a way that’s never been seen on TV.
Of course, the idea that Magnus’s love will literally never die helps, but for him it’s more than that.
“I look at it the same way as Asian stereotypes on TV,” Shum says. “Why would I want to play that? I want to find uniqueness and capture it every time Magnus and Alec have intimate scenes.”
Here’s hoping for many of those scenes when the show returns in June.
DEADLINE – Freeform has renewed sophomore fantasy drama series Shadowhuners for a third season to air in 2018. The news, which is being delivered by the cast on Facebook Live, comes as Shadowhunters is headed to the June 5 return for the second half of season two.
The cast of Shadowhunters also did a live on Facebook to announce the exciting news to the fans. In case you missed it or want to rewatch, you can check it below:
Congratulations to Harry Shum Jr., Wong Fu Productions, New Form Digital, and all the cast and crew members of ‘Single By 30‘ for having the series recognized as a honoree in this year’s The Webby Awards for Drama: Long Form or Series.
— New Form (@NewFormDigital) April 4, 2017
Prepare for a full month of appreciation and celebration of our wonderful, Harry Shum Jr. using the hashtag
Throughout April, we will post our favorite thing about Harry according to the schedule below:
- April 1- Favorite Photo
- April 2- Favorite Interview
- April 3- Favorite Dance Video
- April 4- Favorite Character
- April 5- Favorite Quote
- April 6- Favorite Outfit
- April 7- Favorite Magnus Look
- April 8- Favorite Ship (from his projects)
- April 9- Favorite BroShip (from his projects)
- April 10- Favorite Selfie
- April 11- Favorite ShumBara Photo
- April 12- Favorite Gif
- April 13- Favorite BroShip (In real life)
- April 14- Favorite Photo from Event
- April 15- Favorite IG post
- April 16- Favorite Photoshoot
- April 17- Favorite Physical trait
- April 18- Favorite Personality trait
- April 19- Favorite Scene
- April 20- Favorite Tweets
- April 21- Favorite Movie Project
- April 22- Favorite TV Project
- April 23- Favorite Hairstyle
- April 24- Why You Love Harry?
- April 25- Favorite Photo with Charlie
- April 26- Favorite WongFu Short
- April 27- Favorite Glee Performance
- April 28- HAPPY BIRTHDAY, HARRY! (Video info below)
- April 29- Funniest Moment
- April 30- How did Harry Influence You?
On April 28- Harry’s Birthday, we’re going to post a video celebrating the journey Harry has been through in his career until that day, combined with these beautiful moments & memories, we’re going to add Birthday wishes from his fans- YOU!
Send us some nice wishes, a photo or a video or you wishing him a happy birthday, fanarts, and anything else you’d like him to see in this video, add your name, usernames on social media and where you’re from in the world!
DEADLINE- APRIL 22
Twitter (DM)- @harryshumjrnet
Instagram (DM)- @harryshumjrnet
Facebook (DM)- @harryshumjrnet
Harry Shum Jr. and his Shadowhunters co-star Matthew Daddario are scheduled to attend 28th Annual GLAAD Media Awards as special guests. The event is set to take place on April 1st at the Beverly Hilton, Los Angeles – California. See the official poster below:
If you will be in Los Angeles next month and would like to attend the event, you can purchase tickets and learn more about the event HERE.
Harry Shum Jr. was scheduled to appear at ShowtimeCon2 in Barcelona, Spain this weekend (March 25th and 26th) to meet the fans, but unfortunately he had to cancel it last minute due his busy schedule – he is currently shooting Shadowhunters season 2B in Toronto. Zarata Events, the one responsible for the convention, released an official statement about it. Read it below:
From the deepest pain of our hearts we have to give you a very sad new we received just last night. Unfortunately and due to a new last minute change in the shooting of Shadowhunters, both Matt and Harry have been forced to cancel their appearance on ShowtimeCon2. The news caught us already in Barcelona, waiting for them to catch their flights in 2 days to come, and leaves us without no material time to be able to replace their attendance. We know that at this point there’s nothing we can say to mitigate your disappointment, but we want you to know that they really want to come to Spain to meet their fans, so we are working with their manager different options to be able to compensate you in some way for their absence at the convention.
This unfortunate news that has surprised us all literally two days before the event, wanted to be explained by the boys through a video made by themselves that we attach below.
VID MATT: https://www.youtube.com/edit?o=U&video_id=sG5BvbJDHvY
You can change Harry and Matt products for the products of other guests at the convention itself, or in case you do not want the change, they will be refunded in full. To do this, you must send an email to email@example.com from Monday, indicating your name, order number and detailing the products purchased, the price of each and if you prefer that we make the refund by paypal or by Bank wire. We ask you a little patience with the refund, since there are a lot of orders. When we return to Bilbao after the convention we will get full with it.
We’re so sorry 🙁
You can read the same message in Spanish HERE.
Daydream confirmed today (February 28th) on their official Twitter page that Harry Shum Jr. will be joining his Shadowhunters‘ castmates Matthew Daddario and Alberto Rosende at Daydream Con Shadow Edition in São Paulo, Brazil on May 27 & 28, 2017.
He will be there for Q&A panels, autograph sessions, meet & greets, and photo ops with the fans. It’s an amazing opportunity to meet him. You can miss it!
For the Brazilian fans, click on (…more) for all the info in Portuguese.
Wevents Production confirmed on their official Twitter page that Harry Shum Jr. is the third guest at The Hunters Of Shadow Convention in Paris, France. This is an amazing opportunity for fans to spend a weekend with their idols and get autographs, take photos, watch panels, meet another fans and talk to the actors. The convention will happen on June 24th and 25th, 2017 at Novotel Paris Est. Harry will be joining his Shadowhunters castmates Matthew Daddario and David Castro.
The tickets for passes and activities are already available. Click here for more info.