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 photos / Paris Helena
grooming / Marygene Rose
styling / Chaine Leyendecker
story / Koko Ntuen
special thanks to Next Models
Sam Evans — equal parts teenage boy and international-catwalking, screen-stealing Instagram heartthrob — was discovered in an “only in L.A.” moment when Howie and Terry Mandel walked by his family while they were dining out in the city. His little brother Charlie, a coltish ball of youth, stopped Howie to try to make him laugh, à la America’s Got Talent. His wife Terry, a Hollywood power agent, was won over instantly, signing them both on the spot.
Evans, with his piercing blue eyes and handsome, Elvis-esque face, was eventually signed to NEXT Model Management when he was just twelve years old. He was thrust into the Hollywood machine, appearing in series like Modern Family, as well as much-anticipated films like Code Red and Ditch Party. As he jetsets around the world, we chat with Evans, getting an insider look at working in the entertainment industry and being a social media star all while maintaining a humble, glowing attitude.
How did you make your transition from acting to modeling?
I actually started as an actor and become a model after a director for a music video I acted in took photos of me that were seen by NEXT Models in L.A. They brought me into their office in Beverly Hills, measured and interviewed me, and then signed me to a three-year contract when I was twelve.
What was your first favorite movie?
So many favorite films. Being an actor, I study a lot of performances to try and get better, but probably the first movie that got me interested in becoming an actor was The Outsiders. I just dug the storyline and overall message, and the film has so many good actors in it. I later exchanged messages with S.E. Hinton, the writer of the story, and she assured everyone she’s not writing Outsiders 2, which I think is a good thing since some classic films should just be left alone.
What else would you like to do in show business?
I really want to be the best actor I can be. I study really hard, meeting at least once a week with my acting coach Robert Rusler. He has been a great coach and friend. He was in the 80s film Weird Science as the bully with Robert Downey Jr. He’s taught me a lot. I even got to meet RDJ and talk to him for a while about acting. Living in L.A. and being an actor allows me to meet lots of talented actors and ask them advice about the industry. I also met Sean Penn, who I am a big fan of, and he was really nice and took the time to talk with me. Still on my list is Leonardo DiCaprio… His work is top shelf in my book. Ever see Basketball Diaries or Inception? Mind-blowing performances by him.LADYGUNN SAM EVANS 1How has the industry changed you?
The industry hasn’t really changed me, but rather just changed my life. I used to go to traditional school but had to switch to home school to accommodate my crazy busy schedule.Who do you look up to?
Personally, my parents. They have been together for like, 30 years, and they both teach me good values. They take the time to support me and make sure I treat others with kindness and respect. Professionally, I have lots that I look up to like DiCaprio, but really anyone who has the courage to go for their dreams. I enjoy this business because I get to be around so many creative thinkers who work hard at trying to achieve something memorable.Do you have any mantras to get you in the zone?
Probably the thing I try to do is be authentic and put the work in. Before the camera rolls you have so much prep work that you need to do with getting auditions, studying sides, and putting your spin on a character. If you put the work in it should feel natural to deliver scenes, and that’s when it’s so fun.
Do you feel like you are missing out on your youth by working?
I get that question a lot and you know, I feel very lucky to find a passion so early in life. I feel very fortunate to be an actor and model and it has brought me so many fun experiences that so far, I really don’t feel like I have missed out on anything.
What’s the hardest part about the entertainment industry?
You get so much rejection that you have to be able to handle it. You can’t take each “no” personal, but “yes” can be so much fun! You also have to be able to work really hard.
Who do you have a crush on?
I’m a teenage boy so I have lots of crushes, ha ha. But right now I am crushing on Chloe Grace Moretz. I got to work with her on a photo-shoot and we hit it off and became friends. She is super talented, smart, strong, and has a great laugh. She has been in the game for a while so I look up to her for what she has been able to accomplish at such a young age. Before you go all TMZ on me, no, we are not dating — just friends!
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