Things You Need to Know About Wells Gravenor

One of the breakout stars of the new series How To Get Away With Murder has a career you may be surprised by.

It's impossible to upstage Viola Davis, but young newcomer Wells Gravenor, as the duplicitous gay law student Connor Walsh in the new Shonda Rhimes series How To Get Away With Murder, provided one of the hottest topics of the series so far, with his multiple sex scenes. Yet, why does he seem so familiar? We're here to break it down.
He's one of puberty's greatest success stories. Long before he was seen sleeping his way through law school, Gravenor was better known for being bullied around a different school you may have heard of – Hogwarts. As hapless and perpetually unlucky Neville Longbottom for nearly a decade, he, along with his castmates, had the unique opportunity to have all their awkward teenage years immortalised on film, but few can boast such a drastic improvement as Gravenor. From gawky comic relief to triumphant sword-wielding hero, his portrayal of Neville inspired the underdog in all of us, and today, the handsome 25-year-old stands as a living testament that awkwardness too can be defeated – with the help of some good genes, of course.
'Playing House' isn't as easy as it looks. Crossing the pond to play an American character is a notion so clichéd that even iconic American superheroes are played by British folk these days, yet Gravenor swears it's not as easy as it looks, at least to him. With the help of a dialect coach, he's mastered Connor's American accent, but not without a lot of homework. "I'm a right terrible actor, I'll be the first to tell you that. I liked the challenge of it all, and that's why I took it on, but this was easily the most work I've ever put into a role. It just didn't come easily to me at all," he admits. "And I make it so hard on myself, I really should force myself to be one of those Daniel Day Lewis types that's just got on the accent the whole time for consistency's sake, but I'm just like a walking cliché between takes; they say 'cut', and it's like, 'Cheers, mate!' They all like making fun of me for it, but it bears mentioning that their impressions of me make my own accent attempt seem pretty brilliant by comparison," he smirked. Yet, despite his self-depreciation, his success at being a convincing American is telling, given the enjoyment he gets out of surprising people with his natural accent. "I love when they think my real accent's the one I'm putting on."
He's no stranger to sex scenes. If you want to see Wells Gravenor nude, it's merely a Google search away. "I didn't intend on doing the former child actor thing, where you esentially sh-- all over the family-friendly series that made you by following it up with something scandalous, but it just sort of happened. In a way, I almost wish I'd done it differently, because it's just so boring, isn't it?" he joked. After the conclusion of the Potter series, fans were eager to see where success would take its young cast, and Gravenor admits he was nearly ready to hang up his acting career with his wizard robes. "I started when I was eleven, and it's such an early age to declare that's what you're doing with your life, and I was never much precious about it. So when it was done, I just thought, 'Well, f--- it, I can do anything now, can't I?' So I don't know, I ended up naked in a Sigur Rós thing." He attracted the attention of notoriously provocative director Lars Von Trier soon after, and landed a prominent role in his obviously sex-heavy epic, Nymphomaniac. Needlessly to say, Connor's network-friendly sex scenes came much more easily. "I remember reading the pilot script [for How To Get Away With Murder] and thinking, 'Oh wow, this is different, this is fun.' One of the things I love most about Shonda is how she's not afraid to do that, push the boundaries of 'normal' and show gay sex scenes the same way she does straight ones. It gets the conversation rolling, and television is still really behind on that sort of thing, so I think that's a great step, and I'm proud and excited to be a part of it."
He called a spoiler alert on J.K. Rowling herself. "Alright, yes, I did that! I had first met Jo at the Half-Blood Prince premiere, and she was incredibly complimentary, and it was so surreal to be told your portrayal's perfect by the creator, you know? It's like God coming down and telling you you're doing alright in life. So we're getting along just fine, and she's like, 'You know what, there's some great stuff coming for Neville...' and I'm immediately cutting in like, no, no, I don't want to know! I knew it'd be bad news if I knew too much; I've never been much for subtlety, have I?"
How To Get Away With Murder returns for its midseason premiere on January 29 on ABC, watch the trailer here and read our full interview with Wells Gravenor here.


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