Interview with Keiynan Lonsdale
Keiynan Lonsdale is having quite the year and has been involved with several hot projects, some of which have been released within the last year, and others that will be released in early 2016. Lonsdale landed the role of Uriah in the Divergent film trilogy, where he played opposite Shailene Woodley as a fellow ‘divergent’. He will be returning this March as the same character in the newest installment of the series, Allegiant.This up-and-coming star can also be seen on the CW hit show The Flash, where he plays the iconic DC Comics character Wally West. When he’s not acting on television or the big screen, Lonsdale can be found working on his music. While growing up in Australia and listening to Michael Jackson (like the rest of us), Lonsdale kindled a passion for music and recently released his first EP album HIGHER Vol. 1.For several years he worked with MTV News, attending and hosting music festivals and interviewing such musical artists as Disclosure and Miguel. In between juggling his professional life in the film/TV and music industries, Lonsdale stays active with local dance classes and hanging out at the beach with his friends. It is clear that Keiynan Lonsdale is a busy man on the rise who comes armed with a fully loaded, well rounded resume.RAINE: Was there a time that you questioned your decision to become a creative entrepreneur?LONSDALE: When I was twenty, I was really struggling with it all. This was about one-and-a-half years before Insurgent. I was working all the time and then one day my mind just stopped and I couldn’t see myself going beyond where I was; I felt very lost. At a point I really started to question myself, asking “Wait - is this possible and am I good enough and if I am, how the hell am I going to get there?” I was dropped by my old managers in LA and Sydney, which added to the self doubt.RAINE: What are some of the things you have learned over time that have helped you attain success?LONSDALE: My mum always taught me to write out lists and write out my thoughts, so I would write out my money plans for the next few months; what money I was getting in from what job and what I was spending each week. I knew what I could spend and to make a plan and have it there. Doing that, you will really know what you can achieve financially and how you can change that. You need to write everything down and be aware of how much you are spending.RAINE: How did you put together the right team to help manage your money?LONSDALE: It came from years of meeting new people and having teams that just didn’t work out, including managers. It took all of those experiences to recognize who could genuinely represent me, and then trust those people I gave financial control to. It occurred organically. I didn’t rush into building a massive team right away. It started in Australia, then extended to management in LA, then later to a few agents and now a business manager to help me to be smart with the financial side of things. I didn’t study business so I had to learn the right questions to ask. It takes everyone being on the right page and communication is key.RAINE: Any travel hacks that improved your experience?LONSDALE: I feel like I haven’t traveled enough. I have been fortunate to live in different cities due to work. Make sure that wherever you are, you make it feel like home, unless you want an escape; do the opposite.RAINE: Tell me about Flash. What went through your head when you finally knew you got the role?LONSDALE: After I knew it was 100%, I ran around the house. I feel that it doesn’t matter how many good things people say to you; If you don’t have the job, you don’t have the job. I was just super excited. I was able to become a part of the DC Comic World, to play a superhero. To play a superhero is what every kid, and maybe every adult, wants; to have super powers. Inside Tip:In terms of my character, you will see a lot more of Wally doing his own thing outside of the West family, and how that affects the West family.RAINE: Any words of Wisdom to share?LONSDALE: Remind yourself constantly why you want to be doing this. What do you love most about this? If you are not inspired, you will not move forward and be motivated to get things done. Find your inspiration and make it count.