It’s obvious Nico Tortorella isn’t one to take himself too seriously; he likes to find the humour in things — especially fame. A familiar face to teen audiences for his roles in ABC’s Make It or Break It and the short-lived CW series The Beautiful Life, Tortorella is currently starring in director Wes Craven’s highly anticipated Scream 4, which opened at no. 2 at the box offices last weekend, the 22-year-old actor is something of a mixed bag when it comes to his taste, interests, and off-screen personality. “I like extremes,” he says.
An avid camper/hiker, this mountain man, with his fancy for antiques, also cites “living extravagantly” amongst his usual Saturday afternoon pastimes, right before “meeting normal America.” Of course, it’s hard to tell if the actor is being sincere when it comes to comments on having an excessive lifestyle (Bottega Veneta is after all ranked amongst his preferred fashion labels) or, once again, poking fun at the presumed lifestyle of Tinseltown’s upstarts. My guess would be the latter.
Climbing up young Hollywood’s one-to-watch list, Tortorella may look the part of the new James Dean, but he isn’t about to play the part of the rebel without a cause. More inclined to enjoying the simple things in life, we wager that our boy isn’t going to let the attention from his latest blockbuster go to his head. It’s unlikely he’d go from the type of guy who says: “my favorite thing in the world to do is jump in my car with my dogs, drive to a random small town I’ve never been, pitch a tent and explore,” to dictating a 20-page rider.
And, as for his pretty exterior, don’t let the coiffed hair deceive you, there’s a man’s man underneath that model gloss. He climbed a tree for us — a tall one — and did it as effortlessly as he pulls of the role of Trevor Sheldon in Scream 4 — the arrogant big man on campus, “the guy everyone loves to hate.”
Now to meet the guy the big screen can’t help but love. Below, Tortorella shares his thoughts on working with Wes Craven, making his mark on the industry and creating his own fashion line.
We were all pretty impressed with your tree climbing skills on out shoot, are you a pretty fearless guy?
It’s my inner monkey. I would definitely say I’m fearless for the most part.
Is there anything that stirs up the fear in you?
I’m trying to think of something that I’m afraid of and the first thing that comes to mind is rattlesnakes. I hike a lot, and I always think about what the game plan would be if I was bit, it scares the shit out of me but not enough to make me stop exploring.
Helps to be fearless when working in the horror genre with all that blood and gore on set.
The voice of Scream, Ghostface, was the scariest part. The actor who plays him (the voice) was on set the whole time but no one knew who he was…it was pretty scary.
Without giving away the secret behind Ghostface, where does Trevor fall into the whodunit scheme of Scream 4?
Right smack dab in the middle of it.
Hmmm…how about sharing a narrative clue with the readers?
Expect the unexpected.
Not very forthcoming, but clue noted. Scream is a pretty huge horror franchise, were you excited to be a part of its history and to work with Wes Craven?
He’s a genius. He has this insane vocabulary that blows your mind. But at the same time he is a little kid who loves making horror movies. Both sides were great to work with. I mean come on, it’s Wes Fuckin Craven.
Were you already a fan?
My brother actually filmed me when I got the call from my team letting me know I officially was part of Scream 4: screaming crying and a lot of swearing.
Screaming and crying, huh?
I mean what can I say, it was unfuckingbelievable. I’m not going to lie, I’m not really a horror/slasher movie fan. It’s never been my schtick. I prefer the more psychological thrillers than full-blown slashers. But after working on this movie, I definitely have a newfound respect for the genre.
What about your handsome onscreen appearance, has accolades including being crowned MTV’s “Hump Day Hottie” endowed you with a newfound respect for being young Hollywood’s new heartthrob?
In one way or another I’ve been preparing for “it” my whole life. Whatever “it” is, I’m ready for it.
On the topic of young Hollywood, whom do you admire and with whom would you like to work with?
This is always a hard question for me to answer because of the vast amount of people I’m stoked to work with. I feel like anyone I say would just sound cliché. Clearly all the classics, and all the new up and comers. Can I say everyone?
Despite life in Hollywood, do you still feel like a Midwestern-boy at heart?
It’s somewhere in there for sure, mostly in my family values. I like to think I’m from everywhere and nowhere all at the same time.
What about your current home, L.A., what’s your favourite thing about it?
Everything outside of the city. Mountains, ocean, desert, the rest of California.
What do you think is the difference between L.A. hipsters and a N.Y. hipster?
Interesting question. They both take themselves way to seriously. Chicago knows what she’s doing.
Do you pay much attention to fashion?
I breathe it. It’s an extension of who I am. Working on a line as we speak. I’ve been designing my own jewelry, bags, and clothes for some time. You will most definitely see my name on a line soon, I can promise you that. My favorite designers are CK collection, Bottega Veneta, Mr. Freedom and Ralph Lauren.
How about grooming, you’re hairstyle is pretty impressively coiffed! Is your grooming routine high or low maintenance?
Super low. All I need is the sun, the rest kind of just all falls into place.
You have a bit of a James Dean look going on, do you also share his rebellious streak?
Absolutely, always ready for my next adventure.
What are you working on now?
Challenging solid work. Throwing the whole me into roles. Other than that the possibilities are endless. Sustainable living and renovation. Family. This is going to be the best year yet, I can feel it.
Shot on location in Los Angeles Grooming by Rosie Johnson, Exclusive Artists Management