Kristian Flores on Enjoying Simon in “College Spirits”

In “College Spirits,” Kristian Flores performs Simon Elroy, a highschool pupil struggling to come back to phrases with the unexplained dying of his finest pal, Maddie (Peyton Checklist). For Flores, whose masterful and nuanced efficiency is without doubt one of the present’s highlights, the function was a chance to make use of among the previous challenges which have peppered his life so as to add layers to his character.

“College Spirits” finds Maddie simply as she discovers that she’s a ghost who’s trapped in highschool endlessly. However the present is not merely a teen dramedy or an exploration of the paranormal — it is also a layered story about trauma, friendship, and love that transcends life. In her afterlife, Maddie worries about her alcoholic mom, whom she needed to care for extensively whereas she was alive, whereas Simon worries that he’ll by no means see his pal once more. The present’s advanced themes had been an enormous draw for Flores.

“I misplaced a number of issues and other people early on,” he tells “So once I take a undertaking, I do not wish to dance. I name it dancing — once I learn a script and the character is not actually doing something. I like scripts which have one thing to say . . . I would say that ‘College Spirits,’ not less than, simply cuts proper into the meat. Within the first 5 minutes of the present, you realize it is going to ask good questions and that the creators are as much as one thing.”

For Flores, embodying a personality like Simon — who shares such a profound bond along with his finest pal, Maddie, that he is even capable of talk together with her after her dying — was a chance to discover a type of love he says he is tried to cover from. “Typically you get damage slightly bit an excessive amount of to wish to love once more, proper?” Simon, although, is “simply the purest instance of unconditional love, as a result of his entire goal is to search out the reality within the present,” and Flores says that enjoying the character “type of taught me that you would actually love once more.”

Simon begins out as somebody who’s “type of a critic” and “thinks he is above training,” Flores says, and would not take a lot self-motivated motion. However when Maddie dies, he immediately finds himself obsessive about fixing the thriller of her homicide. “A instructor instructed me that we solely have 5 to eight occasions in our life that change the course [of it] endlessly,” he says. “I believe this was a very powerful for him.” When requested if he can identify any of the 5 to eight occasions in his personal life which have modified its course endlessly, Flores thinks earlier than he settles on one. “There is a choice I made that type of modified all the pieces, which was I finished watching motion pictures and TV reveals,” he says. “I seen that it damage my appearing, in a means. Alfred Hitchcock mentioned, ‘The extra virgin our eyes are, the extra we’ve to say.’ And that type of clicked in me.”

Although Flores would not watch many TV or motion pictures, he does spend his time engaged with many various types of creativity. “Once I’m not filming, I am writing,” he says. “I simply completed my first novel, referred to as ‘The Comfortable Ghost.'” He is additionally a poet and is the writer of two collections, “Can I Inform You One thing?” and “The Goodbye Tune”; the latter gained the 2021 American Fiction Awards in Poetry: Anthologies. He is such an artwork devotee that, Flores says, if he had been compelled to remain in a single place endlessly after he dies, like in “College Spirits,” he’d choose the Louvre. “I must be in that museum endlessly, as a result of that takes months — no, I believe it really takes years to totally take a look at each single portray and sculpture with sufficient time to know it,” he says.

But it surely’s not solely due to the artwork — it is due to the life-changing experiences the artwork creates for the true individuals who journey to see it, day after day and 12 months after 12 months. “How cool [would it be], simply to observe dates, individuals go on dates, and other people cry in entrance of those French work?” he muses.

In relation to serious about what really occurs within the afterlife, Flores is not sure. “I believe dying is an idea that’s exterior the realm of our understanding. Nonetheless, in contrast to a few of his different “College Spirits” costars, he is open to the potential of ghosts and life after dying. “Inside that lack of comprehension, I believe there’s an eternity,” he says. “I do not suppose we actually die. I believe we’re with the celebs.”

For now, although, Flores is absolutely engaged in making the world a greater place for the dwelling. He additionally spends a number of his time volunteering by elevating cash for homeless shelters, meals banks, and catastrophe reduction efforts. In 2017, he was awarded President Obama’s Volunteer Service Award for his contributions to UNICEF.

We are able to anticipate to see him much more on our screens sooner or later, too. Flores has already starred in various motion pictures and TV reveals, together with Hulu’s “Reboot,” and is fastidiously contemplating his subsequent initiatives, in search of those that can reduce by means of all of the noise. “My objective is to search out individuals within the trade who like the identical factor as I,” he says, including that he is in search of tales about “textured human conduct, or any type of layered emotion.” “You do not discover that fairly often within the trade,” he continues. “I believe there’s only a choose group of people that actually wish to make the identical type of motion pictures. That is on the horizon for me — to seek for individuals who love the identical factor and wish to make essential movies.”

The primary 4 episodes of “College Spirits” at the moment are streaming on Paramount+.

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