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Profile: Netflix’s ‘Everything Sucks!’ star Sydney Sweeney

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UCLA chapter.

With the success of Stranger Things and 13 Reasons Why, the most recent original series to arrive on Netflix is Everything Sucks! a coming-of-age, comedy-drama. Released on February 16th, the show takes place in a real-life town known as Boring, Oregon during the mid-1990s. The ten-episode series centers on a group of high-school students navigating through life and dealing with issues such as dating and growing pains. I had the chance to speak with one of the stars, Sydney Sweeney, who plays the character Emaline. With three shows releasing this year, Netflix’s Everything Sucks!, HBO’s Sharper Objects, and HULU’s The Handmaid’s Tale, Sydney can respectively be considered the breakout actress of 2018. In an exclusive interview with Her Campus, Sydney shared some thoughts including details on her character Emaline and advice for aspiring actors that are currently in college. 

Her Campus: How did you begin your acting career and what has kept you motivated to continue?

Sydney Sweeney: I actually began my career by convincing my parents to let me be an actress when I was 12 with a PowerPoint presentation describing acting and my goals. I’ve just always known it’s what I’ve wanted to do. I love jumping into other people’s shoes, and connecting to others. 

HC: For your upcoming show Everything Sucks! what was the most enjoyable part about playing your character Emaline? Most challenging?

SS: It was fun playing a character that had so many layers, and outfit changes. I’d never played a character that had such a huge arc in the length of one season, so it was important and fun to develop that. The most challenging part of Emaline was her dramatic side, I personally do not have the confidence she has when it comes to the idea of having all eyes on her. So I had to get over that fear for all of her craziness. 

HC: Since the series is set in the ‘90s, I’m sure a lot of ‘90s kids will feel nostalgia for the theme. If you could bring back any 90’s trend to 2018, what would it be and why? 

SS: The fashion! I found myself slowly morphing into a 90s kid while we were filming. My closet is now filled with overalls, crop tops, flannels, mom jeans, and Doc Martens. 

HC: Even though the show revolves around high school students, how do you think college women can resonate with its message? 

SS: Well the cool part is that they all went through their own high school experience, and I think in Everything Sucks! there’s a little bit of something for everyone to relate to in it. Whether they went through what one of the characters is going through, or knows someone who has. And even though it’s set around high school kids, people in college still struggle with finding yourself, finding love, and growing up (I know I do). 

HC: Most embarrassing high school memory? 

SS: My car broke down in the middle of the drop off section at school and I had to get out and start pushing it. Definitely wish I didn’t exist that day. 

HC: With the Coming-Of-Age theme in your show, what is one thing you know now that you wish you knew in high school?

SS: I tried to make everyone else happy and lost sight of what made me truly happy. I wish I could go back and tell myself to love myself and not worry about what others thought of me. 

HC: How have you been able to balance your career with college?

SS: It gets tough sometimes, but I’ve always actually enjoyed school, so I think that helps. I make sure I communicate with my Professors and classmates, about lectures and homework if I’m on set. I have many all nighters getting it all done (like tonight), but education has always been #1 for me, and I thank my parents for that. 

HC: Besides acting, do you have any other passions? Are you involved in anything on campus? 

SS: I love sports, or hiking, you’ll always find me outside doing something. At school I’m actually a part of a club called The Culture Club. It’s purpose is to implement student ideas to increase creativity and bonding within the culture of the school, like student spaces. 

HC: Where do you go to school? What is your major?  

SS: I go to to LACS, and I’m studying Entrepreneurship. 

HC: Are you a Gilmore Girls fan? What is it like working with Alexis on The Handmaid’s Tale?

SS: I grew up watching Gilmore Girls with my older cousins! I had my mom on set the first day I worked with Alexis, and I fangirled so hard in my trailer my mom couldn’t stop laughing. She’s amazing, and so incredible to watch her play her character. 

HC: What can we expect from your guest starring role on The Handmaid’s Tale?

SS: You’ve never really seen a character like Eden before on the show. She’s a true believer in Gilead, making her naive and a bit of a danger. 

HC: What advice would you give to aspiring actors and actresses that are currently in college?

SS: Hard work pays off, the harder you work the more people will notice. You also have to really love it, it’s such a tough and brutal industry, with a lot of people trying to bring you down. Stay strong, and focused. 

Find Sydney on Instagram!

Photo Courtesy of AdvantagePR, Netflix

Renée is an alumna at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and served as the HCUCLA Editor in Chief and one of the Campus Correspondents for the 2019-2020 school year. She is passionate about storytelling and pushing for more Asian American representation in fashion and entertainment. 
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