While some kids hide underneath their blankets once they discover the monster underneath their beds, FINN WOLFHARD didn’t need a lot of growing up before he decided to face them himself. Sure, the underground creatures he takes on are a bit fictional, but the young actor is braving the real world with promise and precision.
It’s not that hard to be smitten with Finn Wolfhard. Just like the characters that he portrays, he’s a charming young boy who views the world with eyes of wonder and excitement. At 14 years old, he’s already been in two huge thriller franchises that most kids his age wouldn’t even dare to watch. He first hit our frequencies last year starring in Stranger Things as the determined leader of the pack, Mike Wheeler. The series might’ve catapulted his career, but his love for the craft has been keeping him grounded. “The only thing that’s different now is that I get stopped on the street for pictures and have a lot followers on social media, but that never changed my personality or anything. I’m just happy to be an actor in general,” he adds. Making his way from Hawkins, Indiana to Derry, Maine, he’s also set to star in the upcoming movie adaptation of Stephen King’s horror classic It as the buck-toothed goon Richie “Trashmouth” Tozier. While both involve a plot where children mysteriously go missing, we’ve found ourselves a star in Finn Wolfhard. He’s definitely got the “It” factor, and there’s nothing strange about that.
Mr. Turk Blazer, DUVIN Tee. Unis Pants
“Acting is my favorite thing to do, so whatever comes to me, I’d do it as long as the script is good.”
￼Despite being a middle-schooler, Finn is wasting no time kidding around. Although it seems like he’s shaping up to be sci-fi’s It-boy, he’s been gradually showing different sides of himself. When he’s not busy slaying strange creatures and dancing clowns, Finn can be seen shredding his bass and guitar, and he’s got an impeccable taste to match the skill he’s been refining. His covers of Mac DeMarco and Nirvana have been circulating across the Internet, in addition to the buzz he’s been creating with his band Calpurnia–and it doesn’t stop there. He recently hosted and performed at Sweet Relief’s benefit concert called Strange ’80s alongside Sarah Silverman, “Weird Al” Yankovic, Tenacious D, and Slipknot’s Corey Taylor. And now, he’s stepping behind the camera with his latest project, co-directing a crowdfunded music video for Spendtime Palace’s Western rock tune “Sonara” with former Viner Josh Ovalle. With It premiering this September and the second season of Stranger Things streaming this October on top of his personal ventures, Finn might’ve seemingly bitten off more than he can chew, but never underestimate a small kid with a big appetite.
KONUS Sweater, Unis Pants, Vans Sneakers, Caserta Eye NYC Sunglasses
You recently dabbled into the world of filmmaking, co-directing a Western- themed music video for Spendtime Palace with Josh Ovalle. Can you tell us some of the directors that inspire your vision as a director?
I think my favorite directors would be Spike Jonze and Edgar Wright. I like Spike Jonze because he’s so versatile in a way that he can make skateboarding videos but also win an Oscar for Best Screenplay. That really gives me faith that I can be an actor and still be a director. And Edgar Wright’s incredible because he just knows how to create something visually. He has perfect vision. Oh, as well as Sofia Coppola! That’s another director that I admire a lot.
We’ve also been seeing a lot of your band Calpurnia online. Can we expect any music release from you guys soon?
Yeah, it all depends on my schedule but I think we’ll be doing an EP that’ll be out in the next couple of months. Hopefully next year, we’ll do some shows. We want to do as many shows as we can ’cause we love performing so much. We want to do shows in Vancouver and a tour maybe next summer.
Maison Kitsune Shirt, Nana Gudy Jeans, VANS Sneakers, Caserta Eye NYC Sunglasses
Going into your upcoming projects, you’ve been into a lot of sci-fi and supernatural stuff so far. Was this a conscious choice or a mere coincidence?
It’s a weird coincidence for sure. ‘Cause when I auditioned for Stranger Things, I was auditioning for everything. That was just the right thing for me to do at that time. Same thing with It, and I’m glad that they were. It’s just complete coincidence. Acting is my favorite thing to do, so whatever comes to me, I’d do it as long as the script is good.
Both Stranger Things and It are set in the glorious decade of the ’80s. How were you able to play a character from a time period you have no memory of?
The cool thing about playing a character in general is you have to add yourself to it, so I try to put as much of myself into every character that I play as possible. Like in Stranger Things, I read the lines like how I would say them in real life. I think the only thing that really has to do with the ‘80s is that it’s set in a different time. If you know enough about it, it’s easy enough to do.
You’ve got the chance to work with Sean Astin for this season. How was it like working with him?
He’s so amazing. He was open to anything. I asked him every question I had about The Goonies and The Lord of the Rings. He just gave me so much knowledge and told me to enjoy being a kid but at the same time, be comfortable with what you’re doing as well as the projects that I’m in.
Mr. Turk Blazer, DUVIN Tee, Unis Pants
“The cool thing about playing a character is you have to add yourself to it, so I try to put as much of myself into every character that I play as possible.”
How different would this season of Stranger Things be from the first one?
The second season is just like the first, but better. It has the same sense of wonder and adventure, but adding more horror and drama aspects to it. I even think it’s funnier than the first. It’s taking everything that the first season did and just improving.
Moving forward into your career, what kind of projects are you interested in doing next?
For acting, I’d love to do a comedy or a drama. I don’t want to do too many sci-fi and horror stuff ’cause I would just get typecasted. Obviously, I enjoy doing Stranger Things, but the genre in general isn’t always my favorite. And I’d also want to continue directing anything that’s written by me. I don’t want to misquote Matt and Ross [Duffer], but they told me, “If you want to be a director, you have to write your own stuff.” And I really like that ‘cause you have full control of everything.
Being a kid yourself, do you have any tips for other kids who want to follow the same path that you thread on?
I think anyone my age who’s into acting should go to open casting call websites like Craigslist and just find whatever they can find. If you want to do acting classes, that’s fine, but acting classes never worked for me. I’ve learned to access my emotions way more as I went along. But it depends. If you want to study it, that’s a different thing. I only advise that you go to school for it if you don’t know anything about acting. But if you already know enough about it, then I think that you should just do your own thing.
Tommy Hilfiger Sweatshirt, Unis Pants, Vans Sneakers
By Pola Beronilla
Photographed by Kareem Black
Styled by Jamie Grace
Grooming Korey Fitzpatrick for Exclusive Artists using Oribe Haircare