'Little Fires Everywhere': Gavin Lewis on life lessons Moody taught him and learning from Hollywood's finest icons
MEAWW spoke exclusively to 'Little Fires Everywhere' star Gavin Lewis who opened up about learning from some of Hollywood's finest actors and the lessons his character taught him
Hulu’s newest original series ‘Little Fires Everywhere’ dropped its first three episodes on March 17, one day earlier than expected and fans couldn’t have been more thrilled. Based on the critically acclaimed novel of the same name by Celeste Ng, the limited series follows the lives of two mothers (played by Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington) and how their very different families collide in explosive and life-changing ways.
While the series has three Hollywood heavy hitters (including Joshua Jackson), the majority of the cast is comprised of young up and coming actors including Gavin Lewis. Lewis plays Moody Richardson, a 15-year-old boy who feels like an outsider in his own family, that is until the mysterious Warren family comes to town and he falls for the daughter Pearl. Speaking exclusively to MEA WorldWide (MEAWW), Lewis talked about the importance of Pearl’s character in Moody’s life and the reason why his character was so drawn to her.
“I think Pearl was the first person that Moody ever really connected with, she's totally different. She is somebody that instead of spending their free time focusing on being popular, spends it focusing on writing and art, which he absolutely loves. Moody has put himself in this category of disliking people and just not being social in general, so Pearl is sort of perfect for him, she opens him up because he has never really had anyone to open up to. I think Pearl is Moody’s first love, for sure.”
The limited series focuses heavily on racism, classism and how people of different backgrounds judge one another. As a young man himself, Lewis learned some valuable life lessons from Moody, who struggled with distancing himself from the beliefs bestowed upon him by his family and finding his own voice. “By playing Moody, I learned the importance of just being me and to not judge a book by its cover, which Moody does have a habit of falling into. He's better about it than some characters, but I think it’s still a problem that he's probably gotten from his mom a little bit. So I think that's the thing I could definitely take with me in life…it’s never a bad idea to look beyond the surface of somebody.”
Lewis’ performance in ‘Little Fires Everywhere’ is sure to stand out, as he plays Moody in a relatable and visceral way. While he has other credits like ‘Prince of Peoria’, ‘Roswell, New Mexico,’ ‘NCIS: Los Angeles’ and more, he has never had the opportunity to work with such iconic Hollywood stars, which is a whole other experience in itself. Lewis not only felt grateful to work with the likes of Witherspoon, Washington and Jackson, but he also learned things from them that simply cannot be taught.
“With Reese, I really admired the energy she brought to set. For me as an actor, it was so cool to see somebody that has done so much homework and knows so much about their character, which is something that I can take with me whatever I do next. And then with Kerry, she committed so strongly to the emotional choices she brought to her character, it was sort of like a confidence thing. Seeing somebody else do that made me more willing to try. Then with Josh, it was really cool to watch him work. In between scenes he would be talking to Reese and making everyone laugh and then he would just slip into his character so fast, It was really impressive.”
While Witherspoon, Washington and Jackson assuredly left a lasting impression on Lewis, they weren’t the first celebrities to inspire him and push him forward in his career. At the young age of six Lewis was diagnosed with diabetes and this was before he decided he wanted a career as an actor. After winning a contest for kids with diabetes, he was flown out to meet Nick Jonas, who of course also suffers from the disease and is a huge advocate for those that suffer from it.
“I won a contest when I was six years old, the parameter was that I had to be diabetic and have a non-profit organization. I got lucky enough to win that contest and they flew me out to meet him. I was six years old and was newly diagnosed and it was so cool for me to see somebody that has done so much and has made such an impact on the world while also having diabetes. And at six, I wasn’t acting at all, so I would like to think that he sort of inspired me.”
After watching Lewis’ performance in ‘Little Fires Everywhere’, it is clear that this is just the beginning of a long and prosperous career for the young actor. The first three episodes of Hulu’s explosive new limited series are now available to stream and the remaining five episodes will air weekly on Wednesdays.