Although Shaun has amassed an impressive list of credits as an actor on stage, film, and television, he is best known as Grandpa Jack on CBC's hit series, Heartland. It is a role he was practically born to play. His continuing performance on the show reveals that he has fully mastered the craft of acting and even managed to imbue his character with a depth of understanding about the human condition. In many ways the figure he portrays reflects both the warm and sentimental thrust of the series and the raw, yet sensitive, qualities underlying its ongoing concerns with family integrity, positive values, and the basic challenges of life.
Grandpa Jack Bartlett, Shaun’s character, illustrates his devotion to firmly held beliefs about the nature of heroism. Taking on the role in 2007, Shaun amazes and amuses fans in equal measure with his consistently insightful Gemini-nominated work on the series. While his film and television performances cover a great range of characters, both heroes and villains, he admits to gravitating in recent years to “the more stoic and heroic types”. For that reason his portrayal of the taciturn Grandpa Jack resonates not only with his personal convictions but also with those of the show’s spellbound viewers who identify with Jack’s stern outlook, sense of justice, and disdain for phony behaviour.