'Moonlight' Actor Ashton Sanders Opens Up On Film And Life In Raw Clips

By Christian Bryant, Ben Schamisso | December 19, 2016

Earlier this year, we sat down with "Moonlight" actor Ashton Sanders to discuss some of the film's themes and listen to some anecdotes from his blossoming acting career. In anticipation of awards season, we're releasing excerpts from the interview that didn't make it into our original video.

Not that long ago, Sanders was studying at DePaul University. But in the months since the release of "Moonlight," things have changed for the 20-year-old actor. From press tour interviews to the celebrity run-ins — Sanders recently met both Lupita Nyong'o and Pharrell Williams — the Los Angeles native has had a lot to digest. He opened up with us about adapting to his new lifestyle.

 

In the next clips, Sanders talks about playing a vulnerable young gay black man and how his personal life — in some ways — mirrors that of Chiron, the film's main character. "This film is very relatable to me," Sanders says. "I was bullied when I was younger."

Also, watching the film might have been just as emotional for Sanders as acting in it. "Actors are super self-conscious," Sanders says.

Finally, Sanders says he appreciates film composer Nicholas Britell's work, which he praises in this last excerpt. "If [the film] was at 95, the music makes it the 100," Sanders says.