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LIVE 24-SEVEN


STARRING IN LOVE, SIMON SHE PLAYS THE ROLE OF LEAH


One area where Love, Simon differs from many teen movies is in having a gay protagonist. Which feels like it shouldn’t be a par- ticularly unique thing but somehow still is… Representation is such an important thing. And especially in film and other art forms. I feel there are more LGBTQ films, or films that are centered around LGBTQ protagonists, these days but it's still lacking – there's definitely room for more. What's so special about Love, Simon is that it's not only a film that is centered around a gay character, but it's also a big mainstream studio film and it’s a love story. Creating a film that is based on an LGBTQ protagonist has been done, and done well, before…Carol or Call Me By Your Name, to name a couple of examples. But, this is a little different I think. It’s not only a love story, it’s about youth, it’s a mainstream coming of age story and I think perhaps maybe the first time an LGBTQ love story has been told in such a big way, by a major studio.


On a base level, as an actress is it fun to play someone who wears cool clothes? Definitely. Growing up I was always interested in design - although I didn’t grow up in the fashion industry - I’ve always maintained an appreciation for design, fashion and art...I think through playing a character and particularly playing Leah, you definitely pick up a lot more on what you're wearing, and even more so the history behind it and what goes into it.


Congrats on the Golden Globes nomination for 13 Reasons Why. How was the night? It was exciting. The energy was quite palpable. It was a really wonderful night and I just tried to take in as much of it as I could. It was special for me for a lot of reasons. My first Golden Globes obviously, but it was also such a poignant night because of the Time's Up movement. I remember this time last year I'd just finished shooting season one of 13 Reasons Why and I watched Claire Foy accept the award for that category. So, to be nominated alongside her this year as well as obviously Elisabeth Moss, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Caitriona Balfe, it was a very special sort of full circle moment.


Let’s talk Love, Simon. What’s it about? Well, the film is based off the YA novel by Becky Albertalli, Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda. And it follows a 17-year-old boy through high school. It’s his story of falling in love and then being outed by one of his fellow classmates and how that affects him, his family and his friends and the people around him.


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Leah and Simon are pretty much lifelong friends. Did you know Nick [Robinson] before the film? Was it difficult to create that feeling of easy familiarity between his character and yours? Nick Robinson’s great. We’d never met before the film, but he’s very talented and wise and has a wonderful energy. So, it was kind of easy to get along and I think we have a nice dynamic that’s hopefully similar to Leah and Simon.


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