Walking through Borough Market in London, Kit Connor reflects on his newfound fame and the sudden interest in his private life. At just 19 years old, Connor has already been acting since the age of eight. While he is grateful for the success of Heartstopper, the hit Netflix series in which he stars, he admits that he was not prepared for the millions of people who are now interested in his life. In a recent interview, Connor discusses the challenges of fame, his experiences in the industry, and his hopes for his future as an actor.
Connor, who plays Nick Nelson in Heartstopper, a show about two schoolboys navigating their first queer relationship, explains how the sudden fame has affected him. He opens up about the pressures of being labeled a “heart-throb” and the scrutiny of his personal life on social media. Connor reveals that he wasn’t asked about his orientation during his audition for the role, but he embraced the opportunity to authentically portray a queer character. However, the attention on his personal life became overwhelming, especially when he was photographed holding hands with a female co-star, leading to accusations of “queerbaiting.” In response, Connor made the decision to publicly come out as bisexual on Twitter.
Despite the challenges, Connor remains dedicated to his craft and hopes to be known for playing a diverse range of roles, rather than being defined solely by his sexuality. He wants to represent all parts and believes that being queer can be portrayed as beautiful on screen, rather than focusing solely on the hardships. Connor also expresses his love for Heartstopper and the positive impact it has had on audiences. The series has been praised for its innocence and gentle portrayal of queer love, which Connor believes is important for young queer people to see.
As he continues to navigate his career, Connor shares his experiences working on other projects, such as Rocketman and The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. He reflects on his journey in the industry, from small roles to leading parts, and the impact of the pandemic on his personal and professional growth. Connor also opens up about his struggles with shyness and social awkwardness, explaining that fame has both matured him and made him socially immature in certain situations. However, he remains grateful for the support of his Heartstopper castmates and the opportunity to work with talented actors like Olivia Colman.
As our conversation comes to an end, Connor reflects on the ups and downs of fame and the importance of observing life and human behavior in his acting. He expresses his desire to continue learning and growing as an actor, while also appreciating the ordinary aspects of his life. Connor acknowledges that while fame can be overwhelming at times, he is determined to stay grounded and focused on his passion for storytelling.
Season two of Heartstopper is set to premiere on Netflix on August 3rd, and Connor is excited for audiences to see the continuation of Nick and Charlie’s journey. He acknowledges that the second season explores more mature themes and includes love scenes that are less awkward to film. Connor believes that the growth and development of the characters will resonate with viewers and hopes that the show will continue to have a positive impact.
As we say our goodbyes and Connor heads off to catch his train, it’s clear that he is grateful for the opportunities he has been given and excited for what the future holds. With his talent, humility, and dedication, it’s clear that Kit Connor is a rising star in the acting world.