Exclusive Interview with ‘Stargirl’ Actor Graham Verchere

You might not be familiar with Graham Verchere, but you will be soon. The actor on the rise is best known for his recurring roles in FX’s Fargo opposite Ewan McGregor and Carrie Coon, his role as young Shaun Murphy in ABC’s The Good Doctor and most recently his role as George Lockwood in The CW’s Supergirl. However, it’s his starring role in the upcoming Disney+ movie Stargirl opposite Grace VanderWaal and Giancarlo Esposito that might be his biggest yet. 

Photo credit: Erich Saide

I got the chance to talk to Graham about how he got into acting originally, his audition process for Stargirl, how he relates to his character Leo and more! Keep reading to see what he had to say!

Tell me a little bit about how you got into acting originally.

My twin brother and I started acting together because our cousin was doing a little bit and we thought it looked fun! He’s since stopped to pursue more athletic (and more recently, musical!) talents, but is actually just now getting back into it! I never stopped, and I’ve been lucky enough to enjoy working on some absolutely wonderful projects!

Was there a specific person or experience that you would credit with helping you decide that acting is what you wanted to do for a living?

Not a single person, but everyone I’ve ever worked with on set. You hear stories about divas and stuck up snobs but I’ve only ever met wonderful, wonderful people working in film. Those people, combined with the incredible places I’ve been able to see and things I’ve been able to do, mean I could never go back!

You’re still super young with a long acting career ahead of you, but is there a specific role or type of character you haven’t gotten the chance to play yet but are hoping to cross off your bucket list? 

It’s harder to say a specific role for film, but in theatre, I’d love to play Mark Cohen from Rent, or Evan Hansen. In film, I absolutely love the idea of filming action movies and working with special effects. I’d love to be a superhero someday, and I know it’s an almost impossibly long shot, but being in a Star Wars project and having a lightsaber would be a dream come true.

Switching gears, let’s talk about Stargirl.What was your audition process like?

I sent in a tape first, and it seemed pretty normal except that it just felt like it clicked. They asked us to tape again, and soon after, we flew to LA to do a screen test with Grace. After I’d gone home and convinced myself I had no hope of getting it, I got a call from Julia Hart and it was official!!

Stargirl is based on the book of the same name. Had you read the book before landing the role? If not, did you read it afterward?

I hadn’t read the book before hearing about the audition, but I read it before doing the screen test. I absolutely loved it. I would still call it one of my all time favourite books.

For those who have never read the book, what is your character Leo like and how does he fit into the story?

Leo is someone who as a kid was fun and free, but after moving schools and being bullied, he learned to hide any part of him that stood out.

Eventually, the radically different Stargirl arrives, and we see through Leo’s eyes how she changes his life and the life of a whole school stuck in conformity.

I know a lot of actors bring a bit of themselves to the characters they play, but in what ways do you think you’re similar to Leo and in what ways do you think you’re different from Leo?

I honestly don’t think there’s many things that are different about us, except for him being in the marching band and me being an actor. One of the reasons why I love the book so much was just how overwhelmingly relatable he is. I’ve been lucky enough to put the journey of trying to blend in that we see Leo go through mostly behind me, but its still something important in my life.

What was it like working with Grace VanderWaal and Giancarlo Esposito?

Those are two incredibly talented people. Grace has never acted before this and she blew everyone away. It was crazy to see, and that’s on top of being great to be around.

Giancarlo has obviously proven himself to be very skilled time and time again, and I’m counting myself lucky to have been able to be there for this time! He’s such a great, fun, down to earth guy and just an absolute pleasure to work with.

Photo Credit: Erich Saide

In addition to Stargirl, what other projects are you working on?

Unfortunately there’s nothing I can talk about yet, but there’s always exciting things coming soon. For now, I’m just getting ready for Stargirl!

Last question — we’re called Talk Nerdy With Us because we all have an inner nerd so what is something that you’re currently nerding out about?

My brother and I just recently ordered custom lightsabers and I could not be any more excited. Unfortunately there’s a few factory delays, but for now I cannot wait!! The hilt is fully metal and the blade lights up with individual LEDs to give it a scrolling effect (or even a certain blade patten!) in any color. It’s going to be just about the coolest thing ever, and I can assure you when they arrive, we will have battles posted online for all to see ASAP. I think that’s nerdy enough!

Stargirl is currently streaming on Disney+. Make sure you follow Graham on Twitter and Instagram.

Feature Photo Credit: Erich Saide

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