Ross Lynch

The Featured Presentation

Tyler Cotton

Photo By: Noah Asanias

For Tyler Cotton, there has been nothing chilling about his adventure in acting since joining the cast of Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. Although he had originally auditioned for the part of Harvey, it was Melvin who he was hired to inhabit on screen – and for much longer than he ever anticipated at the time.

Melvin was only meant to be in one episode originally, so every day that I’m back on set I am so blessed and grateful,” he said in an exclusive interview with TrunkSpace.

We recently sat down with Cotton to discuss the impact of the series on his personal life, forever friendships, and how he’d like to see the Boy Wonder factor into his career.

TrunkSpace: Chilling Adventures of Sabrina has a huge following and a rabid fan base. Where has your life been impacted the most since joining the series as Melvin?
Cotton: One of the biggest impacts has been my day to day. Because of this amazing show I got to quit my day job and put all my energy and focus into this role/show and into my acting career.

TrunkSpace: Although grounded in reality, the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is the kind of series where anything can happen. What was the craziest on-set moment that you experienced where you looked around and said to yourself, “Is this my life right now?”
Cotton: Every day is like that for me! Melvin was only meant to be in one episode originally, so every day that I’m back on set I am so blessed and grateful. I genuinely think that every day I’m on set I have a moment where I look around and think about how lucky I am to be where I am.

TrunkSpace: You’ve spent more than 10 episodes playing Melvin. At what point in the process do you start to feel like you know him as well as yourself?
Cotton: Every time I think I know Melvin I get a script that really makes me think about the character more and more. I feel like I know Melvin really well but then I get an opportunity to explore deeper into the character and that’s something that always excites me!

TrunkSpace: From what we understand, you originally auditioned for Harvey. In an alternate reality where you’re playing that character – do you think your journey since joining the series would have been dramatically different had you played a different character?
Cotton: Oh my god, my journey would have been extremely different but I’m also really happy with how things turned out! Ross (Lynch) is the perfect Harvey and does an amazing job and I really love Melvin.

TrunkSpace: For fans, the final product of a film or series is always the most memorable part, but for those involved in a project, we’d imagine it goes much deeper than that. For you, what is something about your time working on Chilling Adventures of Sabrina thus far that you’ll carry with you through the course of your life/career?
Cotton: I mean I genuinely hope that the friendships I’ve made continue on. I’m so blessed to be on a show with such an amazing cast and crew and I feel like I’ve built some really strong connections with a bunch of people and those are relationships I’d like to keep!

TrunkSpace: What is the biggest lesson you’ve ever learned on set – any set – that you still apply to your work with every job you book?
Cotton: Respect. It sounds silly but respect is the biggest thing you can apply to your work on set. Respect the crew because they are there before you get there and long after. Respect your fellow actors, respect the work they have put in and respect their process on set.

TrunkSpace: Who has had the biggest impact on your career – whether through physical assistance or as a support system? Is there someone you feel has had a lasting impact on your path thus far?
Cotton: The answer to this will always be my parents. I’m so lucky to have the parents that I have – they have supported me through this extremely difficult career and continue to push me and help me grow as an actor and as a person.

TrunkSpace: Blank check question. If someone came to you tomorrow and said, “Tyler, here is an unlimited amount of money, I want you to go and make whatever project you want for yourself,” what kind would you put into develop and greenlight?
Cotton: Good question! My dream role is to play Robin (like Batman and Robin). Robin had his own comic book series that ran for 183 issues. I’d love to do a Robin series following those comics.

TrunkSpace: What has been the highlight of your career as a whole thus far?
Cotton: Without a doubt this show has been the highlight of my career so far. Not only because it is an incredible show to be a part of but also because of the amazing cast and crew who put so much love into the show.

TrunkSpace: Time machine question. If you could jump ahead 10 years and get a glimpse of what your career looks like a decade from now, would you take that journey? If not, why?
Cotton: I don’t think I would take that journey because then no matter the outcome I’ll always be thinking about that future instead of focusing on myself and my career right now. It would be tempting though!

Season 3 of Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is available now on Netflix.

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Listen Up

Ellington Ratliff

Photo By: Valentina Socci

As the talented drummer and vocalist for the pop rock band R5, Ellington Ratliff has experienced more than most people twice his age. Having toured the world numerous times over and amassed millions of fans across the globe, the California native began acting at a very young age before turning his passion for music into an unexpected career.

We recently sat down with Ratliff to discuss transitioning from the R5 tour bust to his home, how LA people are the chillest, and why he doesn’t geek out about certain drum kits.

TrunkSpace: You just finished up a tour with R5 and now you’re back in Los Angeles for a short break. Does it take you a bit of time to get readjusted to home after a stretch on the road?
Ratliff: It definitely takes a second. When I’m home I don’t want to leave and go on tour, but then when I’m on tour I’m like, “Oh man, now I’ve gotta work, but I don’t have to worry about cleaning my room.”

It’s nice to be on the bus and worry about one thing every day. I love being home but at the same time, it’s a totally different mindset.

TrunkSpace: And if you have the type of brain that works well within margins, life on the road is so structured that it becomes easy to get used to the schedule aspect of it.
Ratliff: Definitely! Everything we have on tour is on a schedule… on an app that we can look at and be like, “Okay, 8 o’clock is an interview, 9 o’clock is this, 10 o’clock is sound check.” When I get home and I don’t have that manager setting up what I’m doing all the time, it’s like, “What do I do with my day?” Self-motivating is a whole thing you have to keep getting better at… just time management on my own.

When we’re in LA and we’re writing, which is what we’re doing right now, we can kind of lose the structure. It’s easy to lose the structure because there’s so much to do in LA. We’re going to award shows, we have press things, and sometimes we want to stay home and watch Netflix. It’s on us to be in the studio and to be writing.

TrunkSpace: We’d be toast. “Oh, the new season of ‘Stranger Things’ is premiering this weekend? Cancel all writing!” (Laughter)
Ratliff: (Laughter) Yeah! It’s weird having to choose when to go to Hollywood and actually go to a party. But then, you know, you suck it up and go out and see all your friends and it ends up being all good. But it’s weird. It’s definitely not the ’80s anymore.

TrunkSpace: So you’re not ruling the Sunset Strip Mötley Crüe style?
Ratliff: (Laughter) No. None of that.

TrunkSpace: One of the benefits of being based in LA is that you’re surrounded by so many other creative people, which in a lot of ways, must feed your own creative endeavors?
Ratliff: I’m glad you said that because we do have a lot of friends that are in the business. I feel like since LA is so spread out, there’s a lack of community. We have our friends that are in the music business and can meet every once in a while, but I kind of want to create that vibe you see in movies where people meet at this underground coffee shop/speakeasy club and they do slam poetry in the basement and everyone’s intermingling.

I feel like New York is easier. You just hop on a train. You’re at wherever you need to be. You can drink or whatever you want to do. In LA its like, “Should I get the Uber? It’s a 30 minute drive to Hollywood. I know there’s a jam thing happening, but I don’t really know anyone there.”

TrunkSpace: (Laughter) And you actually grew up in LA, right?
Ratliff: I did.

TrunkSpace: That always seems rare because so many people who live there are originally from other places.
Ratliff: Yeah, and you know there’s a weird misconception about people that come from LA… they think that people from LA are weird. I think on the contrary. The people who are the strangest, in my experience, are the people who come to LA from out of town for the wrong reasons. And you can just smell it when you meet them. You can vibe out someone in like two seconds. And if they come for the wrong reasons, just to make it or they’re not actually passionate or they’re just star f’ers, you can feel that. And there are people that come from out of town who are great, don’t get me wrong, but I feel like people who are from LA are the chillest. They know what’s going on. They know how everything works.

TrunkSpace: You were named after Duke Ellington. Was music an acquired passion or do you think it was somewhat a fate written in the cards for you?
Ratliff: That’s actually a good question because I had no intentions of being a musician as a child. I grew up in the acting scene. I had one of my first auditions when I was like two years old. My parents do it, so they had me do it and they just shuffled me in there. And then high school came around and I started messing around with bands.

My mom does joke around that Duke Ellington was smiling upon me and pushing me to music. It’s just a coincidence. I wasn’t trying to be a musician, but just because I didn’t know I could be. I just didn’t even think about it. I was just doing it. So the fact that it became a career, I’m stoked about it and hopefully I can keep doing it as long as possible.

TrunkSpace: Did your parents nurture your musical side when it took hold?
Ratliff: Yeah, they were definitely supportive. For sure. I mean, being a drummer, you’ve got to be a supportive family because there’s no escaping. Electronic drum sets are like a couple grand and that was a little beyond what we could afford, so you gotta live with just constant drum noise, which is loud. You gotta really be on the team.

TrunkSpace: Do you geek out about certain drum kits?
Ratliff: On the contrary, I could give a crap about that. Jack White is one of my favorite artists of all time. I just love everything he creates. He said in an interview once that he loves to play with old vintage guitars and things that don’t work right and fall out of tune because it’s a constant struggle to get something to sound good. And it’s a whole other part of the show.

I don’t care what I play. I’m not going to be like, “Oh, my snare is at the wrong angle!” I’m just going to make it sound good and play the shit out of the drum set and make it be awesome. If something is a little off on the set, if I have a riser that’s shaking, I enjoy that because it changes the show. That’s the beauty of a show… every show is different.

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