He is Not Okay with This
Hailing from the Windy City, Wyatt Oleff, moved to Los Angeles and has since made a solid name for himself on big and small screens alike.
You may know Oleff as Peter Quill from Guardians of the Galaxy, or as Stanley Uris from It. More recently, he has starred as Stanley Barber on Netflix’s I Am Not Okay with This, alongside his It co-star, Sophia Lillis; receiving positive reviews from critics, the show’s compelling coming-of-age narrative has shone through as their characters have navigated the clumsiness of adolescence with supernatural twists. “In every character I’ve played, I can always see a bit of myself in them, but I really relate to Stanley Barber! Stanley Barber has a lot of energy, and he makes stupid little comments. He doesn’t care what people think of him. That’s more along the lines of how I am,” he says.
Growing up in the world of Hollywood, Oleff considers the challenges of relating to other teenagers: “A lot of the earlier work I did got me used to talking with adults versus talking to people my own age. Sometimes, I will say dumb stuff, or I feel that I am not able to connect with other teenagers. I don’t want to say that I am more mature than other people because I am not! I just have trouble relating to people my age even though I am only 16. I sometimes act older than I look, and I look young for my age,” he candidly shares.
Acknowledging this, however, Oleff is determined to make a difference in the lives of other teens as the young actor has enthusiastically worked with Teen Cancer America where, as their ambassador, he advocates for a comfortable environment for teens undergoing cancer treatment. “Originally, I got involved with Teen Cancer America because my uncle works with them in Chicago. I always felt that I should be using this huge social-media platform for good. I can’t always be posting stupid stuff,” he says. “Teenagers who are going through cancer treatment don’t often get put in a place where they feel comfortable. Usually, they’re in hospitals with super-young kids or with much older people. They may feel that they don’t fit anywhere at all – and being a teenager is hard enough! Focusing on my age demographic and supporting their cause make me very happy. I am thankful to help out.”
When asked for the future of his career, moreover, Oleff affirms: “I want to become a good storyteller, whether that be for acting, writing, or directing. One of the films that really inspire me is Parasite. I could not stop thinking about how well-crafted it was. I want to be able to make a story like that – something that people can really grab onto.”
Writer: Samantha Orr
Photographer & Videographer: Mason Kim
Stylist: Loren Robles
Men’s Grooming: Nicole Sanchez
Editor: Eiko Watanabe
Special thanks to Pizzanista! (@pizzanista - www.pizzanista.com) & EPK Media (@myepk & @epkmedia - epkmedia.com)