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Cole Sprouse is reflecting on growing up as a child actor – and the “trauma” that came with it.
Sprouse revealed he has a “complicated relationship” with celebrity culture in a recent interview with The New York Times while promoting his upcoming movie “Moonshot.” Sprouse began acting as an infant alongside his brother Dylan Sprouse.
Sprouse played the role of Ross Geller’s son on “Friends” before he and Dylan gained fame for their roles in “The Suite Life of Zack and Cody.” After their Disney Channel careers, the two took a break from acting, with Sprouse returning to performing with a role in “Riverdale.”
“I started acting when I was so young that I hadn’t actually attempted, as an adult, to think about if I really enjoyed performance,” Sprouse told The New York Times. “When I returned, I reminded myself that I do very much love the art of acting. But I still have a very complicated relationship to celebrity culture.”
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Sprouse has stayed out of the spotlight this time around, keeping his relationships private.
The actor further explained why his childhood acting career went differently than the young women in the industry.
“My brother and I used to get quite a bit of, ‘Oh, you made it out! Oh, you’re unscathed!’ No. The young women on the channel we were on [Disney Channel] were so heavily sexualized from such an earlier age than my brother and I that there’s absolutely no way that we could compare our experiences. And every single person going through that trauma has a unique experience.”
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Sprouse is defensive of his fellow childhood actors, especially the women, because of the “unique” experiences.
“When we talk about child stars going nuts, what we’re not actually talking about is how fame is a trauma,” he continued. “So I’m violently defensive against people who mock some of the young women who were on the channel when I was younger because I don’t feel like it adequately understands the humanity of that experience and what it takes to recover.”
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“And, to be quite honest, as I have now gone through a second big round of this fame game as an adult, I’ve noticed the same psychological effects that fame yields upon a group of young adults as I did when I was a child. I just think people have an easier time hiding it when they’re older.”