Jesse Luken and Malese Jow on ‘Star-Crossed’, Sci-Fi, and the Cast

Malese Jow and Jesse Luken 'Star-Crossed' Interview
Malese Jow and Jesse Luken star in 'Star-Crossed' (Photo © Richard Chavez)

By Rebecca Murray

The cast of The CW’s dramatic sci-fi series Star-Crossed took part in one of the more popular panels at the 2014 WonderCon in Anaheim, CA, with Stargazers (yes, that’s what hardcore fans are called) learning more about potential romances and break-ups as well as what viewers of the series can expect from the season one finale. And in addition to the panel, the cast and producers took part in interviews to shed more light on this new sci-fi series.

Jesse Luken and Malese Jow Interview

Are you sci-fi fans to begin with? Was that part of the appeal of Star-Crossed?

Jesse Luken: “Yeah, it was definitely an appeal of the story. The world, you could read in the pilot, was just very incredibly interesting. It’s an interesting world in dealing with concepts that humanity has faced for hundreds and hundreds of years, and now we’re in the future and now we’re prejudice, we’re ignorant, we don’t know, fear of the other, and that’s a lot of fun.”

Malese Jow: “I’ve been a part of the sci-fi world for a while now, going from Vampire Diaries to this. So it’s kind of in the same genre, which I really enjoy. I mean, it’s so thrilling to kind of have the relatable aspects of high school and stuff like that and then there’s that twist with either vampires or aliens. So, it’s a lot of fun and it makes things really interesting. We get the liberty of our own world and invite people into that which is really exciting. I feel like we’re on the cutting edge of that.”

Do you ever feel like because it is a big ensemble cast that they won’t be able to spend enough time with each of the characters?

Jesse Luken: “Yeah.”

Because we haven’t really gotten to know everybody yet.

Jesse Luken: [Smiling] “I feel that all the time. I’m usually on the phone with the writers yelling at the time.”

Asking for more lines.

Jesse Luken: “Yes!”

Malese Jow: “And then he offers them money.”

Jesse Luken: “Or I improvise a monologue in the middle and they go, ‘Cut.’ No, I think that actually paints the world in a beautiful way. You do get to know the characters and there is, even with 10 characters, there’s an evolution. 10 characters plus villains and the outside of the core group in high school. You get to see an evolution with everybody and everybody has a unique perspective, and a unique changing perspective which I think is great.”

Malese Jow: “And the cool thing about a show like this is, it does some kind of scattered in the beginning with an ensemble cast but then as you watch a season…I think that’s what people love about a show like this is that you grow with the characters. They are all intertwined somehow. So like by the end of this season, we’re all in scenes together when we weren’t before. It’s really exciting.”

Did they give you any heads-up about what could happen if there’s a season two so that you could plan out your character?

Malese Jow: “They are so sealed when it comes to that but I know that they have been brainstorming, and our season finale is epic. I will say that. It definitely leaves you wanting more.”

Jesse Luken: “You very much see where it is going to start to go, going into season two.”

How has the fan response been so far?

Jesse Luken: “It’s been great. Everybody seems really passionate and very supportive. I think we’ve got a little bit of an underdog thing going for us and I think fans appreciate that, and they’re really behind the show. I’ve been very flattered and humbled by it.”

Malese Jow: “And our cast is great because every Monday we have our weekly live tweet party. Not only do we have fun and bond as a cast still outside of filming, but we get to talk to our fans and hear their responses first-hand which if social media is accessible to you, why not take advantage of it? We’ve been trending every week; it’s been awesome.”

If the show wasn’t doing tweeting with fans, would you be on Twitter a lot?

Malese Jow: “Oh, definitely. I’ve been on Twitter since the beginning.”

Jesse Luken: “No.”

Malese Jow: “I would make you because he has the funniest tweets I’ve ever seen in my whole life.”

Jesse Luken: “I’m terrible.”

Malese Jow: “No you’re not!”


Jesse Luken: “I’m basically Amish. Like I’m just a dumb redneck. I signed up for Twitter…Titus signed me up on set. He was like, ‘You’ve got to get a Twitter.’ I was like, ‘Okay…’ And then apparently you can do videos on Twitter. I still haven’t figured that out. I’m an idiot. I can barely work a computer.”

The show was originally described as Romeo and Juliet/sci-fi. How would you describe it?

Malese Jow: “Well, one of our producers in the beginning actually called it a District 90210. It kind of has the edginess of the whole District 9 alien sci-fi because when we have a fight scene, we have a fight scene. We have the coolest weapons and the sector is nitty-gritty. But then we also have beautiful people in high school who fall in love with each other and make out and take their clothes off willingly. That’s Star-Crossed.”

Jesse Luken: “But then also it deals with these great issues like integration, like how long have we been seeing integration in society whether it be from like Greek and Romans all the way to now. You’re seeing those intellectually stimulating metaphors that go along with the sci-fi and with the high school and everything else.”

And sci-fi is huge on TV right now.

Jesse Luken: “For sure, and I think we’re trying to carve out the alien niche because the vampire, that went, and then the zombies, that went.”

And because the show deals with aliens, do you believe?

Jesse Luken: “Yeah, of course.”

Watch the interview: