The star breaks down the new season and how the grind always continues.
After what has felt like eons, Sex Education is returning to our screens and we couldn’t be more excited. Landing on Netflix this Friday, the show’s third season will continue to spotlight topics that have gone long undiscussed. From sex assaults to STIs, the show follows a group of teens at the sex-crazed Moordale High, as they all try to come to terms with their sexual awakenings and forthcomings. Praised for its educational and unpolished look at the complexities of sexual relationships, the show dives into topics that would normally be taboo in some conversations, as it gives a real perspective into the education we wish we’d had at school.
Having first dropped on our screens back in 2019, the show has gone on to build a cult following and season three is continuing that momentum. Blow jobs, sex scenes and masturbation sequences document the opening for the first episode, while the teens disucss the shame around penis size and how it can affect relationships. Re-exploring the lives of Otis (Asa Butterfield), Aimme (Aimee Lou Wood) and Patricia Allison (Ola Nyman), the new season sees the characters face new challenges while debuting a student musical number.
But if there is one aspect of the show that captured our attention it’s the growth of top-of-the-class student Vivienne ‘Viv’ Odusanya. From forming an unlikely friendship with school jock Jackson to finding love, the season two newcomer runs her own race in the new season and takes her story to a new trajectory. “I’m most excited for people to see Viv blossom,” Chinenye Ezeudu reveals. “ I think she’s very torn this season doing what’s right her and what’s right for the school. It’s hard especially at that tender age. When we realised she’s basically a diversity hire things become clearer.”
From shutting down trolls on social media to starting important conversations, the actor has stepped into the power of her own voice over the years, while taking on challenging roles. Set to appear alongside Kerry Washington in School for Good and Evil with Charlize Theron in the coming months, we caught up with Chinenye talking lessons learnt, reflecting on the past year and how the grind always continues.
Check out the interview below…
Hey Chinenye how are you! How has this past year been for you?
This past year has been pretty good considering we’re all in pandemic. I’ve had some really cool projects come my way and I’m excited for them to come out. I’ve also started writing a TV script with my writing partner Will Rogers that I’m very excited about, and another tv project with the BBC with Lulu Baker. A lot of things in development!
Did you pick up any unusual skills in lockdown last year?
I think like most people I started to bake. I didn’t do the banana bread because it was overdone. I soon discovered baking wasn’t for me.
Coming back into film and acting, how has the industry changed in terms of COVID?
Covid has definitely changed the industry a lot and from an actor’s point of view. Real life auditioning is becoming very rare and self-tapes are now becoming the standard.
How did you first get into acting? What sparked your interest?
I did a play in primary school called the Hoxton Gollum where I played a mad professor and I knew from that moment that I wanted to do this forever. From there I went on to do junior Guildhall and the National Youth Theatre and kept going.
How did your role in Sex Education happened, how did you get involved?
Well, I was agent-less but I heard on the grapevine that they were casting this role, and I had watched the first season and loved it. So, I was definitely keen. I remember having a meeting with Shaheen Baig after writing to her for advice and she advised me to record myself doing a monologue and send it to agents via Wetransfer and that’s what I did, and my now agent Joe Powell replied and invited me in for a meeting, and after the meeting I was like ‘Hey Joe, I know they’re casting for Sex Education can I be seen for it?’ He wasn’t my agent at this point but he still put me up for it. The next day I had my audition and I guess the rest is history.
You first starred in season two, how did you approach your character?
I see what the script is saying and try and build from there. I think about what pace she speaks, usually fast. I do a lot of improv beforehand and build a character.
Can you relate to Viv in anyway?
I think we all kind of relate to Viv, because we all knew a Viv at school. I think we both share ambition.
Viv struggles a lot between what is morally right and wrong while being a high achiever, do you think she deals with it well?
I think she’s very torn this season doing what’s right for her and what’s right for the school. It’s hard especially at that tender age. When we realised she’s basically a diversity hire things become clearer.
Working on season 3, what was the most memorable moment for you?
I have a few, so this is hard. One of the highlights was when we were all around the bus and Jim was making everyone corpse. It took us all so many takes to complete that scene.
What are you most excited for fans to see from the new season in comparison to the last?
I’m most excited for people to see Viv blossom.
Aside from Sex Education you are also starring in School for Good and Evil with Kerry Washington and Charlize Theron, how did this come about?
Yes I am. Word travels fast y’know! I auditioned and ended up getting a role.
What can we expect from this film, talk us through your role?
Can say much about my role because I hate spoilers. I will say that it’s a great cast and we all created something special.
Working alongside these amazing actors, what was that experience like?
You know, it’s always great seeing masters at work doing what they do best. Kerry is so generous and I learnt so much from watching her.
What is the best piece of advice you have received?
“You’re the last thing people are thinking about, don’t worry” – Jemima Kirke
What are you most excited for/ Looking forward to?
I’m excited about getting my projects off the ground. The grind continues but we move.