A star in the making
Aged 21, Ashton Sanders is nothing short of explosive in Barry Jenkins’ much acclaimed Moonlight as the brooding young Chiron, an Afro-American teenager misunderstood by his contemporaries in suburban Florida. Before that keen observers will have noticed his charisma, perfect physique and touching face in Chris Eska’s The Retrieval, presented at the influential indie festival South by Southwest in 2013. And he was also on the credits in the phenomenal movie about cult America rappers N.W.A. Straight Outta Compton of 2015. That’s how you carve out some serious street cred in Hollywood...
A bold fashion icon
At the Oscars after-party, he arrived with his own punk look complete with kilt, fur coat, white socks and his fetish old school Sk8-Hi Vans. He was the only man in a skirt that night, but he did sport a tie. Outside cinema Ashton’s other passion is for fashion. The young androgynous man who enjoys mixing it up (street versus lux) has posed on the cover of Wonderland magazine and for Calvin Klein. His perfectly zeitgeisty gender-fluid allure caught the eye of Raf Simons who seated him front row of his latest show and made the face of the latest Spring-Summer 2017 Calvin Klein campaign shot by Willy Vanderperre. Just take a look at his topless photos on Instagram and you’ll quickly understand why.
A black James Dean
Outside Hollywood, the young man has much in common with his character in Moonlight. While the film deals with the subject of a man discovering his sexuality in a tough Miami neighbourhood, Sanders admits to not having many friends in his own community. In an interview with Wonderland, he explained, “One of things that Moonlight taught me was to always be yourself and to like who that person is. Chiron’s character was a beautiful soul, so vulnerable. It’s scary being that vulnerable. When you wear a social mask to become someone else to fit into society and be accepted by certain people, it oppresses the soul.” A lesson that Sanders flamboyantly embodies himself every time he steps out on the red carpet...
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Instagram : @ashtonsanders
“Moonlight” directed by Barry Jenkins with Alex R. Hibbert, Ashton Sanders