Interview by Jana Letonja

Lukas Gage is a promising, rising talent who has already built an impressive body of work and continues to make his mark on the television and film industry. Most recently, he was seen in the fourth season of Netflix’s global phenomenon series ‘You’.

Just recently, we’ve been able to watch you in Netflix’s phenomenon series ‘You’. How excited were you when you got cast in this hit series?

I was so excited. I am a huge fan. Sera Gamble, Sarah Schechter and Greg Berlanti have found a way to keep the show fresh, new and exciting, yet still flip the genre on its head. I think that’s a testament to them as creatives and their investment in this story. Also, who doesn’t love Penn? I mean, come on.

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In the series, you play Adam, an American playboy who hails from a wealthy family and owns Sundry House, an elite London social club. How has it been portraying a wealthy playboy for this?

I think it was a really interesting shift from coming from a show like ‘The White Lotus’, playing a guy like Dillon, who is in my opinion the salt of the earth, embraces the simplicity of life and doesn’t need much to make him happy. To go from that and play the total opposite like Adam, who is so success-oriented, has no scruples about driving other people to ruin and completely just blinded by greed and validation, it was such a departure. It was fun to go from playing a likable character to one who is so unlikable you can’t help but cheer when he gets taken down.

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In your career, you’ve appeared on quite some very popular series, like ‘The White Lotus’ and ‘Euphoria’. What makes these series stand out so much and so popular among the audiences in your opinion?

For me, it goes back to the creatives behind it. I think that Mike White and Sam Levinson both have such a clear point of view and aren’t afraid to take risks, all while having so much to say about our culture and society. The cherry on top is making it the most visual piece of TV, that feels more like you’re in the cinema.

What ignited your passion and love for acting?

Honestly, I always gravitated towards it and a love for filmmaking as a kid. I had an obsession for movies and movie making, but I think my passion for acting ignited when I met Leigh Kilton Smith, my acting coach and a beautiful human being, who really taught me my first entry into craft and making it my own, who pushed me off of self-consciousness and on to imagination and creativity.

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You co-wrote ‘Down Low’, which just recently premiered at SXSW. The film is an outrageous comedy about one wild night, a deeply repressed man, the younger man who gives him a happy ending, and all the lives they ruin along the way. How has it been being in this dual role for you, as an actor and a writer?

The duality of doing both was a dream for me. It stretched my creative muscles to create this world with my writing partner, Phoebe Fisher. It was a lesson in focus and endurance, and it deepened my listening as an actor. Writing pushes you to observe every line as it will be delivered and what is being unsaid, even to a greater degree than analyzing the script as an actor. Then I got to see the legit role models I grew up watching, saying the words I wrote on a sofa at 2 am. That was so crazy.

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Which experience would you say defined you the most as an actor so far?

I think this film, ‘Down Low’. I felt respected and I respected these other actors so immensely. It felt like a big collaboration where we were all in the trenches together. Discovering, creating and feeling like I was able to carry my own with these established, award-winning artists was the moment that made me feel like ‘Ok, maybe I’m not a complete hack. Still a hack, but maybe not completely’.

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Let’s also talk a bit about fashion. What’s your view on fashion and how do you describe your own style?

I know I have a style, I just don’t know how I would put it into words. Somewhere between laid-back California boy with gothic undertones to a dash of classic and eccentric, and finally to ‘what the hell are you wearing’ and ‘why is that mismatched, but why does it also kind of work’.
Right now I am really gravitating toward brands like Celine, Amiri, Nanushka, Bode, Acne Studios, Isabel Marant, and you can never go wrong with a classic Calvin Klein.

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Tell us more about your exciting upcoming projects.

I have ‘Fargo’ and a remake of the classic ‘Roadhouse’ coming up. I’m continuing to write more material and hoping to produce more content. Maybe I’ll become a DJ or a belly dancer next, who knows.

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talent LUKAS GAGE @lukasgage
photographer JUANKR @juankr_
stylist DOUGLAS VANLANINGHAM @dvlstylist
groomer MIRA CHAI @mirachai
production BE GOOD STUDIO @begoodcreatorstudio
editor TIMOTEJ LETONJA @timiletonja