Chance Perdomo on breaking America, self-belief and the perils of Instagram

The young British actor was BAFTA nominated last year, and his meteoric rise has seen him take America and conquer Netflix. What’s next for Chance Perdomo?

Chance Perdomo lives up to his name. The actor may only be 24-years-old, but he is as pragmatic a man as you’re ever likely to meet — spending much of our interview talking through the intricacies of predictability and probability. Matters, ironically, of chance.

“I have a philosophy,” reasons Perdomo, “of right time; right place. And we can’t control the time we’re in, but we can control the place we’re in. So, if you work hard to be in the right place, then surely success is just a matter of time. Does that make sense?”

From any other young actor, it would raise eyebrows. But Perdomo exudes a rational, level-headed way of thinking that affords each of his theories a certain believability. And, of course, the rising star has the success to back up his ideas.

chance perdomo

“I always tried to put myself where the best theatre was at, or the best acting. I used to come up to London all the time, and listen around and be in all of those scenes. I always wanted to be in the American market, and I have both passports — my mum was born in New York — so I can get across there quite easily.”

It was on one of these transatlantic trips that Perdomo’s chance came. In February 2018, he was cast in Netflix’s Chilling Adventures of Sabrina as the warlock cousin of the titular witch. It’s a pulpy, gothic and frequently unsettling drama — and one that cast its own particular spell on the world when it hit the streaming service last autumn.

"I have a philosophy of right time; right place..."

“Just look at it!” the actor claps. “At any point, a show can just blow up and get recognised. And that’s because we millennials especially have been born in a golden age where you can access the world through your fingertips on your phone.”

But Perdomo, who got his big British break on digital-only BBC Three drama Killed By My Debt, also recognises the strain modern technology and social media has put on the acting world.

“Both unfortunately and fortunately, you can now get quite a lot of clout through things like Instagram followers,” he says. “You can get jobs because of that. I know people who have lost out on jobs because they didn’t have enough followers. Even if you’re neck-and-neck on acting ability, it’ll go to the one with 1,000 more followers.”

chance perdomo

On the set of Sabrina, Perdomo reveals a lot of the older cast were loathe to join Instagram, but eventually asked the younger actors to help with their social media and self-marketing.

“It was a nice little exchange,” he smiles. “And, for someone like me — who has a lot of energy and a head always exploding with ideas — social media is the perfect way to experiment and play.”

Perdomo, young though he is, has a clear understanding of this business. And, for all of his talk of probability and ‘right-place-right-time’, you get the feeling that this is a man who has a real grasp on the industry he’s broken into — and will thrive as a result.

So, while he may insist otherwise, it seems nothing with Perdomo is left to chance.

For more young actors, discover why Enola Holmes’ Louis Partridge is wise beyond his years…,

Chance Perdomo covered the Spring 2019 issue of Gentleman’s Journal. To subscribe to the magazine, click here…

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