Netflix Star Connor Gosatti is as authentic as possible

Gosatti logs into our Zoom call at promptly 8:00 AM, Australian Western Standard Time. I thank him for meeting with me so early, and he thanks me in return for meeting with him so late– we are almost exactly halfway across the world from each other. His agent informed me that since Gosatti is based in Perth, Australia, a Zoom call would be our best bet for an interview.

 “Are you a morning person?” I ask him.

“Mmmm. No.” He chuckles. “Though sometimes I can be waking up as early as four or five in the morning. I have different casual jobs back home, basically working as a transporter, transporting furniture or food. Normally in the morning if I’m working, it’s a get-up-and-go kind of thing. If I had the day to myself, I would sleep in a little bit later since I tend to stay up pretty late. I’m definitely more of a night owl than an early bird. My girlfriend is a morning person, she’s up at like six AM ready to go and I’m still in bed struggling to wake up.” 

Gosatti offhandedly mentions Siena Agudong, his girlfriend and Resident Evil costar, whom he met while filming in Capetown in 2021. Augdong, 17,  is an American actress best known for her many acting credits earned through Disney and Nickelodeon, such as Upside Down Magic (2020), Star Falls (2018), and Alex & Me (2018). I ask him how he thinks she would describe him.

“I think perceptive. They would probably say compassionate, even though I don’t like saying that about myself. Empathetic, maybe more than compassionate. Candid?” Candid, definitely. Gosatti is likable, his authenticity feels personable. As he walks me through his day, Gosatti doesn’t miss an opportunity to share anecdotes as an old friend would over coffee. 

“I love playing video games as a hobby so I have a Playstation set up here. I have a lot of hobbies. When I’m not acting, I’m really into music. I spend a lot of my day playing, whether it be piano or guitar.”

Gosatti’s most recent Instagram picture is an artsy photo consisting of a variety of guitars, keyboards, and amps under a grainy indie-sleaze-esque filter. The caption reads: Music shuts everything else up.

“I grew up listening to Billy Joel and Elton John. My dad is a big fan, so that’s what got me interested in the piano because they’re both just insane on it. About five years ago I came across John Mayer, who I knew nothing about,  but I started listening to his music and he’s kind of what got me into the guitar. I’m still a big fan of his. I kinda love it all,  I’m huge into Jacob Collier who’s getting around now, and Lizzy McAlpine who’s also getting around. Then people like Daniel Caesar.” With Mayer, McAlpine, Caesar, and Joel all known for their emotional and personal lyrics,  Gosatti’s tendency to gravitate towards what feels raw, or “real” to him is evident.

“So then I guess your storytelling translates into your music taste as well?” 

“Yeah, exactly.” 

An emotional journey is important to Gosatti in his own artistry and the media he consumes. 

“I was born and raised in Perth. Growing up I always thought Perth was pretty boring. We’re known as the most isolated city in the world – there are like two million people I think – but because it’s so separate, there’s not a lot going on. Now that I’ve had the privilege of traveling around the world, I’m noticing that Perth is a great place to raise a family. Beach, bush, the desert, there’s everything here. So I had a fortunate childhood in terms of where I grew up.” Gosatti has an undeniable Australian boy-next-door vibe that comes to life when he talks about his childhood and family. 

 Gosatti got his start in the industry at the age of eight when he began formal acting training after being inspired by his cousin’s performance in a play. “I was enticed by the story and washed with emotions. It left me with new perspectives, ideas, and ultimately, wisdom. I knew from that night that I wanted to give the same feeling to others.” He continued to study acting throughout his high school years before eventually enrolling at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, where he received a diploma in Screen Acting. 

“I think every artist creates their own process, even if it stems from others. My process stems from method acting. That real, ‘try to be as authentic as possible’ type of thing. Making sure my work feels believable and that the audience is engaged in the story, that’s always been my goal…  Tapping into your sense of empathy, really trying to understand the character that you’re creating. A lot of actors view acting as completely separating themselves and becoming someone else, but I don’t really agree. You should understand the character as much as you understand yourself, and after that, it’s kind of like a fusion between you and them. That’s what can separate you from every other actor auditioning.”

“So how much of Simon is you, how much was written in the script?”

“A lot of it was me. I got there, I auditioned for Resident Evil, and even after I booked the part it wasn’t until I was physically in South Africa, where we filmed, that I got the script for all the episodes. I had two scenes I had read for as Simon from my audition, and the rest was really up in the air. I knew nothing about Simon. When I got there, we had a meeting with everyone and they were like ‘Okay, basically Simon is a teenage boy who happens to be good with hacking and helps Jade on her journey.’ That’s all I got. It’s funny, I originally auditioned for Simon with an American accent. A week before they started filming, they were like ‘Actually, I think we are going to make him make him British.’  I was like. ‘Guys, I’m not trained in a British Accent.’

They did have an accent coach, who was wonderful– but we had one week of training, then we were filming, so whatever came out when filming was what we got. It did feel a little overwhelming at first, but then we were finally like, “We have his accent, we’re embodying the character now, this is who Simon is.”

“Can you do any other accents?

“Growing up acting, they trained all of us in what they call standard American.  Training us in Australia, my mentors have always said that if you’re doing an accent at work, most of the time it will end up being American. I’ve done projects where I did a New York accent, which was fun, and a Western accent. I specifically remember asking ‘will we need to know British?’ and I was told it was very rare. Now I’m like ‘Damn, well.’  Gosatti lets out another boyish chuckle. 

“You’re in a lot of suspenseful, supernatural types of projects. Resident Evil, Midnight Ticket, Third Night. Is that your favorite genre to work in?” 

“I don’t know if I have a favorite type of genre. Horror seemed to be the ones I book the jobs for, I don’t know, maybe I have a face for horror,” Gosatti says, his voice dripping with playful sarcasm, rising and dropping with inflection in a very animated way– I could almost see his face.

“I really am a sucker for the slice-of-life stories,” he continues. “Where an audience can relate and feel understood,  or where they could learn something new from a story that seems more likely to occur. I think there’s more to learn from stories like that.”

“What about a preference for stage versus screen?”

“I definitely gravitate towards the screen. I did a lot of theater growing up, and I love it. There’s nothing better than being able to get that live affirmation from the audience that they’re there with you or that they’re having a good time. However, for me, since it’s so close up, it’s always felt like you’re not performing for an audience in the same way. It feels like we’re imitating life in a way more personal way. That’s why I love acting. That gives me a much stronger sense of connectivity and intimacy. It’s really fulfilling.”

“Are you personally binging any shows at the moment?” Sharp silence on the end of the line, as if he’s a child who’s been caught with their hand in the cookie jar before dinner. 

I’m actually not a TV person, funny enough. The problem is once I get hooked, I’m hooked and I’m in my room all day finishing a series. Then I feel awful. I did recently watch Kenobi, because growing up I’ve always been big into Star Wars, and I really liked it. Everyone is telling me I should watch Stranger Things. I know I need to. It looks sensational, but I haven’t yet.” 

“I was told you’re interested in using your platform to spread mental health awareness for men. Can you tell me more about why this is important for you?”

Mental health is something I’ve always been passionate about. There’s a lot of issues men are dealing with, but we still feel embarrassed or ashamed when talking about mental health.  With all these movements ,we are getting better, but at least in my experience, the entertainment industry I think it can really take a toll in regards to someone’s sense of self-worth.  Depression, anxiety, body image issues. Not just from the industry, obviously, it stems from a much deeper sense of insecurity, but I find every day, more artists, not just men, are struggling with this. We have these little groups that we can talk amongst ourselves, but then we’re ashamed to be open outside of that, which I think needs to change. It’s hard enough to struggle, but it’s even harder to be ashamed of your struggle as well. I’ve only just had my start, but as time goes on and things progress, I would really like to use my platform to remind people of that, and help them feel sane. I did say men – these conversations are for everyone, but I feel men have an even larger stigma against that type of thing. You never know what’s going on behind closed doors and I think it’s important to build a community.”

The more I hear from Gosatti, the more impressed I am with him. Not only does he excel in bringing new depth to stories through his intimate portrayals, he genuinely seems to be emotionally intelligent on a level most aren’t. Gosatti goes out of his way to stress that everyone struggles, especially those of us who are working in the entertainment industry, a career path known for its unique rigor. The NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Health) has published articles stating that workers in the entertainment industry — actors, musicians, stage production, roadies — are approximately three times more likely to struggle with mental health challenges. Moreover, there is a disproportionate struggle with substance misuse in this population.  In that same breath, Gosatti clarifies that while everyone struggles, men are more likely to internalize than talk through it with a loved one or therapist.

“What’s next for you?”

 “I have an agent based in Perth, but I also have an agent, or team, in the US. They want me working there. Right now, it’s about getting a work visa for America, which can be pretty difficult because of how strict it is. That’s our plan, it’ll open a lot of opportunities, because right now, especially for people in Perth, it is really quiet. The goal is eventually to get to America.”

I tell him that I’ll write everything up and send it his way the following week, and thank him again for our early meeting. 

“Alright, Thank you so much. Ciao ciao.” No stranger to hospitality, he makes sure to address me by name as we say our goodbyes.

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