Rising star Charlie Heaton opens up about the controversy that had him detained and denied entry to the country for drug possession.
Heaton's Fame, Controversy
Like most of the Stranger Things cast, Heaton was a relative unknown when the first season aired in 2016. He was propelled to stardom, but stayed largely in the shadow of the show's beloved veterans and charming kids.
Just before the second season of the show premiered, his name garnered headlines in the most alarming way as Heaton was blocked from getting into Los Angeles due to alleged cocaine possession. While he wasn't charged with anything, the actor missed the premiere and was sent back to the United Kingdom, leading many to speculate whether he'll be back for the next season.
In an interview with Flaunt, Heaton, 23, assures fans he'll still be part of Stranger Things moving forward.
"It was f**king awful. It was just awful," he admits to Flaunt, adding that the incident is all sorted out and he can resume filming with the rest of the cast in April.
The Yorkshire-born actor says that the experience was difficult, especially when the press hounded his home and his parents' residence.
"When something steps in from the work you are doing and breaks into your personal life ... you feel kind of vulnerable," Heaton describes. "All of a sudden it becomes a very big story and it gets really blown out of proportion ... At the end of the day I just wanted to go back. I want to work and continue to work - that's all I've ever done."
Now that the controversy is behind him, Heaton is focusing on exactly that: acting.
Along with Stranger Things, he recently starred in the 2017 film Marrowbone and will be part of the new crop of X-Men in The New Mutants. Like his role as Jonathan Byers in the Netflix show, his X-Men character is an outsider who's not the typical superhero.
"X-Men is a very cool franchise because it has these people who are flawed, they go a bit into that outside vacuum ... it has a very human story to it," Heaton explains.
The rising star is also eager to continue exploring his craft, saying stepping onstage may be a possibility in the future. With his background in music, it's a natural step for Heaton who points out theater's similarities to performing live music.