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by Naureen Nashid

Ahead of Netflix's He's All That reboot, we catch up with the Brazillian-American actor and musician you need to know.

Brazilian-American actor, Andrew Matarazzo, always knew he wanted to act. He began training for it by attending distinguished programs, such as the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts studying Shakespeare in London, Meisner at the University of the Arts, and BFA Acting at California Institute of the Arts. Following that, he studied under the Oscar-winning actor, Tim Robbins.

“It’s been something I’ve been set on as long as I can remember,” Matarazzo says. “I’m very lucky that I knew so young because it really shaped the direction I went in life. I had laser focus. Everything I did was in service to my goals and making that my life.”

One of the key things he learned during his studies was that there’s nothing like the real thing. Matarazzo says, “I think I developed a lot of my craft and ways of approaching my work there, but ultimately it’s incomparable to being on real sets. I don’t regret my studies, though. Especially my time in England, which set the bar for what I wanted to bring to my work.”

Between the years 2014 and 2017, Matarazzo made appearances on television shows like MTV’s Faking It, CW’s Jane the Virgin, and HBO’s Girls. It all led him to land the role of Gabe on MTV’s hit TV series, Teen Wolf. Matarazzo had initially auditioned to be on the show in 2016 for another role but didn’t get the part. However, the producers and casting directors saw potential in him and called him back for the role of Gabe, a villain. After seeing his impressive work, they decided to extend his role and make him one of the primary villains in the final season.

“I was nervous that my character was going to be one of those that the fans couldn’t differentiate the character from myself, and I was going to be hated, but luckily I think the fans got to know me in the months leading up to the show,” the actor laments. “I love playing roles that challenge my personal morals and way of thinking. It’s fun figuring out what makes someone do the things they do and that tends to be more interesting when the role is the villain.”

Most recently, Matarazzo filmed Netflix’s He’s All That, the gender-swapped reboot of the classic teen rom-com, She’s All That. The film has a star-studded cast, including TikTok star and our cover star, Addison Rae, as well as a cameo by Kourtney Kardashian. While Matarazzo wasn’t familiar with the original film before being cast, he did watch it afterwards and liked how it brought about a feeling of nostalgia.

“It was such a fun set,” Matarazzo says. “I felt like I was just hanging out with my friends every day, and our cast chemistry was wild. I play Logan who is one of Jordan’s (Peyton Meyer) best friends. I’m curious to see how the film came out! I know when Netflix picked it up there were some changes, so I have no idea what to expect.”

Looking forward in terms of his acting career, Matarazzo would like to play a historical figure or a real person. He’s a big fan of period pieces so he’d love a role that requires research and building. “I’ve played Amadeus on stage, but a role like that on-screen would be a dream,” he adds on.

With his acting career flourishing, Matarazzo recently had a realization that since his heart had always been set on acting, he blocked out a lot of his other interests and talents, including music. However, he decided it was time to embrace them.

“Music has always been a huge part of my identity, and I found my voice in musical theatre growing up,” he explains. “Later when I started doing covers on YouTube for fun, I developed not only my own sound and direction but the confidence to take it further. I was holding myself back by saying, ‘I’m an actor, not a musician. I just like music,’ but I think 2020 really snapped me out of all the self-doubt and made me embrace the idea that I can be both, in tandem. And in fact, they feed each other and make me a better artist.”

Matarazzo released a string of covers from ‘Bad Guy’ by Billie Eilish to ‘Eastside’ by Benny Blanco, Khalid and Halsey as well as a rewrite of Olivia Rodrigo’s ‘Drivers License’. Soon after, he debuted his first original track and single, ‘Omerta’, which was accompanied by a music film that was completely directed, produced, and conceptualized by Matarazzo. In 2021, he released his single ‘New York’ and, most recently, ‘Different Pages’.

“It was the hardest one for me to write and record because what I was singing about was still something I hadn’t fully worked out or moved on from,” he says about his latest single. “But through creating it, I felt that it healed a lot of open wounds. Essentially the record has two meanings. On one hand, it’s about not being able to sync up with someone, always on two different pages. And on the other, it’s about turning the page on a part of your life and starting a new book entirely. It’s hard to leave major parts of your life behind, but sometimes you need to in order to grow.”

These original tracks will all be culminated into one EP with the final single being ‘Don’t Say Love’, which will have a high-concept music video set to start filming in early September. Matarazzo’s goal for music videos is to approach them like films and make them cinematic. He likes to base them off of motion pictures that have inspired him.

Speaking of the music video for ‘Don’t Say Love’, he says, “I’m pulling my visual inspo from Blade Runner, so there’s going to be a lot of production logistics I haven’t attempted yet and a massive team to make it happen.”

The budding singer is also planning to do his first live concert this upcoming Fall where he will play his original music. “I’ve been holding off on live shows for years now,” he says. “It took me a while to build confidence to even make music, but now that I’ve started my original work, I think it’s time. I’m excited, but also anxious since it’s been such a massive lead-up. I want to do it justice.”

Follow Andrew Matarazzo on Instagram here. He’s All That is out on Netflix on 27th August. 

Jason Renaud
Tanil Raif
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