‘I’ll be playing the next Bond!’ – Harry Trevaldwyn’s bedroom star awakening | Television

Harry Trevaldwyn is preparing for the stellar A-list launch party, the premiere of the first TV series he’s ever been on. “I’ve been loaned this stunning red suit,” he said. “I wonder if I can also wear it to the wedding I’m going to this weekend? Actually, I’d probably be too worried about spilling something on it. Navigating this red carpet world was a new experience for the self-deprecating 28-year-old, who, in the space of just two years, has gone from posting comedy skits from his London flat on social media to appearing in The Bubble, a Hollywood film, and Ten Percent, the British remake of the hit French series Call My Agent!

Tired of his tempting job in 2019, but quietly absorbing all the quirks of those around him, Trevaldwyn began posting hilarious two-minute character sketches on Instagram to his 31,000 followers. Highlights include Office Chat Guy (“Oh, you brought a packed lunch! You’re so nice”) and The Guy’s Girl (“I’ve been into rap recently, but not in culture.” in accordance Street; culturally in accordance Street”).

But his greatest creation is the Smug Mother. Born to a real-life mother of several children she was also mentoring at the time, Smug Mother was an irresistible snob who took the opportunity to brag about her high-achieving children and her beloved husband Hen, while being a total monster to Natalie, her stepdaughter. off-screen from Hen’s first marriage. Poor Natalie, I have to tell Trevaldwyn. “I know!” she says. “Even now, I would announce that I was making a film and people would say, ‘But where’s Natalie?’ I love that you can create a character that doesn’t even have a voice but somehow exists.”

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That’s in no small part because of Trevaldwyn’s talent for creating entire worlds around his characters. We all know these people: we’ve all been caught up in our own hellish circles with them, or forced to have small talk with them at a party.

Trevaldwyn comes from the online comedian school that rose to prominence due to lockdowns, when we all starved for live culture and tied up with our phones in an attempt to distract us from the ongoing global catastrophe. In the US, the likes of Jordan Firstman, Benito Skinner and Meg Salter post character-led observational studies; and in England, Munya Chawawa, Alistair Green, and Trevaldwyn also started to make a name for themselves by creating terrifyingly accurate caricatures of the people we all love to hate.

It is likely that this form of comedy will become synonymous with the pandemic era. Trevaldwyn has his own theory of why this style of humor thrives: “I think people skip that kind of interaction; the people you will meet waiting for the microwave. I also think a lot of comedy and talent will be online, because it’s a lot easier to do things online than it is to raise money to do a show in Edinburgh or something. It’s more of an equal playing field now. The pandemic has definitely accelerated that.”

While he may not have been on the public’s radar for long, Trevaldwyn’s newfound success has long been in the making. “If you’re asking if I always showed off as a kid, then yes,” he laughs. He got his first taste of fame at the age of seven when he played Bloodbottler in the school production of The BFG: “It wasn’t the biggest part but it was pretty funny. And when I hear people laughing, I’m like, ‘Do you like this? Okay, I’ll do more.’”

Hailing from a small village in Oxfordshire, she wasn’t well-placed for fame, leading her to take things into her own hands – like when she saw an open audition call for Skins. A Channel 4 show about teenagers partying and taking drugs was definitely not for Trevaldwyn, he admits. “This is one of my deepest shames. I told my mother: ‘I have to go here, this is my big break!’ But it was very far from my life, because I worshiped authority and excelled in school.” Thinking that the Skins kids were “restless”, he decided to wear one of his grandfather’s old handkerchiefs as a scarf and, for some unexpected reason, put on a West Country accent when he stepped into the audition. “Spoiler alert,” he added. “I don’t understand.”

Despite appearing in the Edinburgh festival fringes for the second year in a row and appearing – with a single line – in the 2019 film The King, Trevaldwyn is still at a loss for how to break into the industry. So he took his iPhone, turned on the camera and recorded it.

Agencies and industry people immediately started sliding into his DMs. Then came the call to audition for Judd Apatow’s new improv film, The Bubble. Trevaldwyn plays Gunther, the health and safety officer for the film-in-film, which is set in England. “I got a text from my agent saying, ‘You have Zoom with Judd.’ It was the most frantic four hours of my life, and then he offered it to me. I don’t believe it. I didn’t sleep the whole time until filming because I thought something bad was going to happen. On my first day, I may have real manic energy. I was like, ‘This is too much.’”

Walking into the set with David Duchovny, Leslie Mann and Fred Armisen was scary for Trevaldwyn. “First of all, all Hollywood stars have amazing skin,” he said. “Leslie walked into our reading and I was like, ‘You are a shining beacon of angels!’” Does she feel the pressure after her unconventional acting route? “Yeah, I really feel the con artist thing,” he said. “Definitely. I don’t think I handled it very well. I remember doing a reading on Zoom and thinking, ‘This is only on Zoom but these are some of the most talented actors I’ve ever seen.’ Then I just thought, ‘I’m nervous it won’t help anything. They decided to go with me, so I had to give my best and fake confidence.’”

Manic energy … in the Judd Apatow film The Bubble, with, from let, David Duchovny, Vir Das, Pedro Pascal, Karen Gillan and Keegan-Michael Key.
Manic energy … in the Judd Apatow film The Bubble, with David Duchovny, Vir Das, Pedro Pascal, Karen Gillan and Keegan-Michael Key. Photo: Laura Radford/Netflix

While she was filming The Bubble she also auditioned for Ten Percent. Trevaldwyn bagged the role of Ollie – Herve, in the original – a celebrity-obsessed actor-agent assistant. The new series – developed by John Morton, author of W1A – leans heavily on the original storyline but has a slightly different tone. The characters are a bit more clumsy, passive-aggressive and, well, British.

Trevaldwyn said: “Parisians are great with their emotions whereas in England we are terrible. So my character, you’ll see the way he deals with liking someone, or being in love, and that’s the most British thing in the world. It’s fun to play because it’s true.”

One area where the Brit version excels is the lineup of celebrities playing fictional versions of themselves: Helena Bonham-Carter, Dominic West, Kelly Macdonald – not bad for Trevaldwyn’s first TV co-star. “One time I was in the makeup chair and Helena and Olivia Williams were next to me and I was like, ‘Eeeeek!’ Olivia shows Helena my video and I melt in my chair, I’m so embarrassed – and happy. I’m just making all sorts of weird noises. ”

Next up for Trevaldwyn are some projects he’s working on but, in true celebrity fashion, can’t tell me about them. However, he could tell me he was working on a comedy show for Channel 4 called Billi, which he would write and host himself. Billi is “a 20-year-old who has A-list energy and a terrible narcissist, but is incredibly charming,” Trevaldwyn told me. When I asked him what else he had planned, he joked: “I would be very surprised if I didn’t play Bond! But I’m doing what I love now, writing and acting. I feel very lucky right now.”

If this all sounds like a dream come true, it’s because it is. “A few years ago my cousin and I had a few glasses of wine and we joked about my Instagram photos leaning against the railing and captioning it: ‘Styled by Gucci.’ Fast forward a few years and I literally wore a Gucci for a magazine shoot, leaning against the railing. Maybe I have some kind of strange and ironic manifestation going on. That’s my magic power: I made a short Instagram post and three years later it became a reality!”

On his way out of the interview room, he was stopped by a girl in the corridor. “I follow you on Instagram,” he said. “You’re funny!” “Why, thank you!” he answered warmly. In her Instagram bio, she wrote, with a firm tongue, ‘a very shy national treasure’. It is possible that the last part of this will come true as well.

Ten Percent is available on Amazon Prime Video starting April 28. Bubbles is on Netflix now.

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