Our third Daybreak roundtable interview at New York Comic Con 2019 was with Austin Crute and Alyvia Alyn Lind! We are so thrilled to have shared in their passion and excitement for this new Netflix series. You can read the the interview below!
NYCC Press: Our readers are aspiring actors, and they submitted some questions for you guys. How important was the chemistry between you and the cast for Daybreak?
Crute: I would say that the chemistry was really important, because even though our characters may not necessarily “like” each other at first, there does become this–
Crute: This bond, this tribe, yeah. That has to come across, and chemistry’s really important in getting that to read.
Lind: And I think that we all have an amazing chemistry, because we were stuck in Albuquerque for so many months!
Crute: So many months!
Lind: And Albuquerque is in the middle of nowhere, so I think that we developed a very close bond throughout the project and the more we got to know each other, it was good for our characters, because as soon as we got really close, our characters got really close, so it was kind of perfect timing for all of us to come together, and now we’re like best friends.
Nerds and Beyond: What roles do your characters play in the apocalypse?
Lind: I play Angelica Green. She is a 10-year-old pyromaniac rebel. She is the craziest 10-year-old you’ll ever meet. Playing Angelica is really fun, because she has so many levels. She’s this insane kid that will tell you off on anything you do and yeah. She’s just insane. Insane in the head! But throughout the season you see her become a little more vulnerable, and all she wants in the apocalypse is to find her tribe and find her place, because she was excluded from her family pre-apocalypse. So she just really wants to find her place in the apocalypse, and it was a really fun journey to take with this character that I connected to so strongly.
Crute: I play Wesley Fists. Wesley’s role in the apocalypse, I would say he is a pacifier almost, like he’s a de-escalator, someone who brings new, less emotionally charged perspectives to pressing issues in the apocalypse amongst the tribes that gather there. Before, pre-apocalypse, he was a bully, ran with crowds that maybe he wasn’t the most evil person in the crowd, but he ran with crowds that he wouldn’t be accepted amongst nerds like if he sat at a nerd table. Kind of like if Harry Potter really did go to Slytherin, you know, like people wouldn’t want to be hanging out with him. So, I think after that apocalyptic shift, which we don’t know why he’s a pacifist, that’s one of the little secrets, like uh-oh, why is he peaceful all of a sudden? I think that he turns into this, I don’t know, this oddly kind of a chameleon in the apocalypse, like he becomes really good friends with some of the characters that you really wouldn’t think he would be friends with.
NYCC Press: What have your individual characters taught you about surviving the apocalypse?
Lind: I mean, if I learned anything from Angelica, I wouldn’t know what to do in the apocalypse if I didn’t play this role really. Since I did, Angelica taught me just grab yourself a flamethrower–
Lind: A pair of Heelys–
Lind: And roll right out of there, and you’re good!
Crute: Mmhmm! Wesley taught me that self-medication in the apocalypse is wonderfully accepted. Nobody’s regulating you on that. As far as weaponry goes, knowing how to wield a sharp object is a very astute skill to have, a needed skill, so I would say those two things. Oh! Also, Wesley’s value of peace and tranquility and mental health and self-checks and emotional-checks and doing all that stuff at such an early age, too, because he’s like 17. So you know, that is also something that he has taught me is valuable in the apocalypse.
NYCC Press: Were you guys able to do any of your own stunts at all?
Lind: (To Crute) You did a lot. I did a few things that I can’t technically say, but our stunt doubles were so amazing, and we love them so much.
Crute: There was one instance where we had to pretend that fire was coming out of the flamethrower–
Lind: Oh yes! I have a flamethrower, and there was one scene where we were trying to kill a ghoulie with it, and fire started coming out of it, but it’s not actually fire, so it’s kind of hard. It was the first time I was using it with the CGI fire. But regarding actual stunts, I did like two or three things that I can’t specify, but it was really fun when I got to do it on my own, because I loved doing them. They’re so fun, but our stunt doubles were amazing.
Crute: Our stunt doubles took a load! But I will say, the stunts that I did (yes, I can’t specify) however, the training that I received on the swords, like A-1-The Best! Now I know how to wield a sword. Now I can like actually use a sword and I actually did that–
Lind: Oh yeah, now I know how to Heely!
Crute: Now she can Heely! So now all of that stuff [that’s] actually me, I actually do that. So it’s not just some CGI sped-up something, like I actually was like “okay, I’m gonna do it right this time. I’m gonna do it right, I’m gonna do it right.”
NYCC Press: The wardrobe is a big part of the show–
Lind: Ugh, the wardrobe!!
Crute: Ughhh, don’t even get me started!!
NYCC Press: What is your favorite piece from your costume?
Crute: My bag!
Lind: Your bag?
Crute: I like my bag!
Lind: He has this insane–
Crute: Crazy, crazy, like–
Lind: Was it Louis Vuitton?
Crute: It’s Gucci. Crazy Gucci bag, that Wesley always wears, and that was like my favorite part of his costume.
Lind: My favorite part was either… well, my flamethrower is not really part of the costume, but I love my flamethrower. Then I had Heelys, but they were Dr. Martens that were hand-painted. I loved those. I loved those so much. I also had these leggings that had like fire drawn on them that were so sick, and I loved those. But yeah, those are like my three staple Angelica items.
Crute: I’ll throw in the [Adidas] Yeezy’s too.
Lind: The Yeezy’s, the Yeezy’s!
Crute: That was really cool, like, oh my, God. We’re in the apocalypse, and we are dripped down to the socks, swagged out in the apocalypse. Crazy!
NYCC Press: What’s been the most challenging part for you guys [while] filming so far?
Crute: The temperature. The temperature, for me.
Lind: Yeah, the temperature was really cold.
Crute: It’s kind of like this nuclear summer thing that’s happening, where like the weather’s shifting, and just because it’s summer time doesn’t mean that it’s not cold anymore. So, a lot of times we would be out doing scenes where yes, the sun would be out, and maybe we would have to pretend–
Lind: It was like 20 degrees.
Crute: Like, shivering!
Lind: We don’t have that much clothes on in the apocalypse either. It’s like very minimal–
Crute: It’s very minimal.
Lind: Because it’s supposed to be hot, and it’s not–
Crute: And it’s like, not. So a lot of times you might see in the mornings we had breath, and it’s like some nuclear summer stuff, but also in Albuquerque, it was fall-winter.
Lind: The first half of the show was freeeeezing outside. Towards the end it got a little better.
Crute: Right. Like I felt like my toes were about to crack off into my shoes.
Lind: No, literally. It was so bad.
Crute: So that was I think the worst part, pretending. The thing is, it can be cold, it cannot be cold, but the whole thing is like you’re not even supposed to see the temperature. Everyone’s like mad hot. We would have to pretend we were cooler than we were. So just making sure that the performance read through, and if your lips are numb, making sure they’re moving as if they’re not numb right now, and making sure you’re not shivering. That was hard. But other than that, [high pitch voice] it was pretty smooth sailing, yeah!
Lind: I would say the hardest part for me was getting to know Angelica, because [she] was such a complex character to wrap your head around, and she is not like me at all. She’s like the opposite of me. I love playing characters that I get to step out of my comfort zone with, so I think learning Angelica and getting to know her and figuring out, you know, what’s too far? Like I don’t want to make her too much of a brat. I don’t want to make a 10-year-old little brat. I want to make sure she had levels, and it was really fun getting to know her but also a big challenge.
NYCC Press: What was your most fun thing to film?
Crute: Most fun thing to film? There’s so many little things!
Lind: I’m trying to find something, because there’s a lot of fun things that I can’t say because spoilers!
Crute: I know! Okay! So, there is a part of the show, okay? Where we all congregate, okay? In a very big place. [To Lind] Can we just say what it is?
Lind: I don’t think you should say, just in case! We’ll ask later but just–
Crute: Right, right, right. In a very big communal place, and a lot of the scenes within this place are just outrageous and ridiculous. [To Lind] You did a lot with the witch.
Lind: I did a lot with the witch.
Crute: That was really cool.
Lind: I’m studying her throughout the season. She’s like my little project!
Be sure to keep an eye out for our fourth NYCC 2019 Daybreak roundtable interview with Jeanté Godlock and Gregory Kasyan!