For some creatives, their extensive list of talents knows no bounds. In the case of the multi-faceted artist, Larsen Thompson, she is the epitome of exactly that. Having entered the public eye when she was a teenager as a dancer, her career since has seen her traverse the professions of modeling, content creation on YouTube, and now she’s ready to take the acting world by storm. All by the age of just twenty-one. It’s an eye-watering portfolio that is only just beginning, with 2022 set to see Larsen feature in the Netflix series The Midnight Club, as well as the feature film American Cherry. Along the way she’s built a huge following, thanks to a truly loveable personality, and humble nature, who’s clearly appreciative for every opportunity that comes her way. Ahead of what is going to be a monumental year for the artist, we spoke to Larsen about her upcoming roles, her compelling journey to date, and her vast ambitions for the future.
Larsen wears a full look by Red Valentino.
Larsen wears a full look by Christian Dior
Larsen wears a full look by Salvatore Ferragamo
Larsen wears a full look by Annakiki
For Larsen, the origins of her career stemmed from a hobby she started at the age of 4 – dance. It was an activity she absolutely loved, and through years of dedication, became supremely good at. At just 12 years old she was assisting some of the best choreographers in the business, and soon the door opened for a potential career opportunity, and the rest is history. “I started working in the TV space, dancing behind artists, like Christina Aguilera, Pitbull, and French Montana.” Larsen explains, “As I kind of started furthering my dance career, I started working with choreographers like Brian Friedman, and some of the top choreographers. I then started transferring into music videos. I played Pink in her music video Beautiful Trauma, I did Chained To The Rhythm with Katy Perry, The Greatest, Sia. And then I most recently did a new video with The Weeknd and Maluma called Hawái Remix.”
It was the perfect first step into the creative world and one that offered an ideal stepping-stone for future opportunities. The next of which was a venture into the world of modeling. Unbeknown to Larsen at the time, such a career would take the artist traveling across the world throughout her teens. “I was doing commercials at the time through dance.” Larsen states, “And they'd always ask me, “Hey, do you want to be a part of our print campaign?” And I'd be like, “What was print?” They’d say, “Oh, you know, for the magazines, billboards, all that kind of stuff. We'd love to have you.”
The world of modeling was the dream environment for Larsen who had been surrounded by fashion her whole life. Her mother owned a clothing store, so a vast array of unique outfits was always close at hand. Working so closely with clothes only made her passion for the subject burn even stronger, and soon she wanted to explore the upper echelons of the fashion world. “Then at 14 years old, I wanted to take this more seriously, I wanted to get more into the high fashion space.” Larsen proclaims, “So, I signed with Next, and then from there, it's been a journey. I've been able to work for incredible brands like Givenchy, Tommy Hilfiger, and Pandora. It's been a super fun experience.” As Larsen has spent more time in the industry, she’s seen many changes, most notably around the theme of sustainability, a subject she’s deeply passionate about. Ever the advocate, the artist uses her social media platforms to search out independent brands that represent the future. “As I've gotten older and evolved in the last couple of years, I'm really more into sustainable fashion.” Larsen explains, “Finding these small, women-owned businesses over Instagram that are making these one-of-a-kind pieces that are handmade, and I've just been super intrigued by that.”
Larsen wears Rodarte with Marcell Von Berlin leather Gloves
When the pandemic hit the world in 2019, every corner of the creative world was affected. For models, the integration of travel restrictions caused quite the shockwave and a total rethink of how content creation could be implemented. Soon, models were given more creative control within their living rooms, void of any physical support. It was an experience that opened Larsen’s eyes to some unforeseen talents, whilst learning about the complex operation that goes on behind the lens. “Over the pandemic, it's been really cool to kind of curate my own content for the brands. Working with brands like Ferragamo, where they'll send me the clothes and then I get to create my own content has been super fun, and definitely a different part of my brain I didn't know I had as far as creativity.” Larsen states, “Not only that but then shooting a campaign at home for Pandora, for example, we had to set up the backdrops and I had to be the cameraman and the prop guy. Then you realize after that, how much work goes into just a shoot, and all the people that make it happen.
Now, Larsen is making her first steps into the acting world. With a couple of films already under her belt, 2022 sees her portfolio expand with two stellar roles that’ll display her array of talents across tv screens worldwide. For the creative, this transition has felt her most natural, as she explains: “I feel like dancing and modeling kind of led me into acting because on music videos I did have to play the part in a character and I feel like that kind of introduced me to acting in a way. So, two years ago, I started acting. I've done a few feature films. And then most recently, I just booked a recurring role on the Midnight Club. So that's directed by Mike Flanagan, and it's going to be airing on Netflix, which is very exciting.”
The Midnight Club marks Larsen’s first step into the world of TV, having previously only featured in films. Named after, and based upon Christopher Pike’s novel, originally written in 1994. The Netflix series sees a group of terminally ill teenagers come together in a hospice, united by their suffering. With each character fighting their own battle, the storyline is touching, emotional, whilst containing an aspect of horror to it. “The turns and the route that the storyline goes is really interesting. I'm just so excited for everyone to see it.” Larsen proclaims. The role she played in the series was one that took a lot of emotional investment, putting herself in the shoes of someone facing such a difficult journey, but one that was truly fulfilling. “It's definitely challenging, but I pull from different emotions that have gone into my actual life. Whether it be losing somebody close to me in my life and taking on those feelings of what they felt like.” Larsen explains, “And kind of just working with my own experiences, and then bringing that into the role was really helpful for me to kind of tap into those emotions and the vulnerability of really playing somebody who is dying, That's the challenge and acting is all about vulnerability. I'm a very emotional person, so it kind of works out for me.”
Larsen wears a full look by Moschino
Larsen is then set to venture back into the world of film later in 2022, with the arrival of American Cherry. Set in middle America, and described as a romance-thriller, the storyline follows a poverty-stricken town and the families that reside there. In her role, the actor states, “I play this mean girl character, which was so challenging for me because I felt like, “Oh my gosh, I never said any of these things to people and I feel so terrible”. But that's what's so cool about it's playing something that's so out of your comfort zone. We filmed in Arkansas. We were in the middle of nowhere. Which was fun, but also very boring.” Written and directed by Marcella Cytrynowicz, the film offered a new experience for Larsen, given the entire production was shot on film. With the extra costs the medium entails, the option for repeated takes was lost, creating a completely different creative experience. “Marcella is a very, very talented director. It was super interesting that we really only had one to three takes for each shot.” Larsen explains, “So, it puts that pressure of like, okay, wow, I only get two takes on this. So, I can't mess it up. There's really strong pressure. But it also makes it more real at the same time. Because I feel like the more you do it over, and over, and over again, it loses the rawness to it.”
As far as Larsen’s acting ambitions go, she’s keen to just take it one step at a time, enjoying every opportunity that comes her way. She’s in the lucky position of truly loving every creative outlet she hones throughout her career, no matter which aspect has her full attention at the time, she’ll be happy and creatively fulfilled. “I'm auditioning and continuing to pursue that, and just trying to grow in my craft.” Larsen states, “We'll see where it takes me, I am just happy for the next project that comes, and I love working hard. It's something I want to pursue and hope to be doing for a very long time. I feel like acting has a lot of longevity. It's like dance, you can really only dance till you're about 26, and your body feels broken. That's definitely not the path that I want to go down.”
However, if it didn’t quite sound as though Larsen was busy enough, she’s set to take yet another creative avenue by storm – the music world. Already working with accomplished writers, the artist is hoping to release a single early in the year. Spurred on by a will to spread a message of body positivity to her young, female following, and be the voice she wishes she had when she was a teenager. “I'm working on music right now, and kind of just tapping into that space.” Larsen proclaims, “I said if I'm ever going to get into music, it's going to be to send out a message to young girls that follow me to just encourage them and inspire them. To lift them up - me with red hair, and freckles, which is something that I've always been so insecure about and never talk about. I want to lift other girls up who may feel insecure about the way they look, or not being the right shape that they think they need to be.”
Larsen has done a fantastic job of maneuvering around the creative world, never being pigeonholed to one specific corner. It’s a testament to her vast array of talents, that no matter what she puts her hand to, she quickly masters it. Despite everything that she’s accomplished already, perhaps what’s most astonishing is her remarkable level of potential, still just 21 years old, Larsen still has so much more to give. 2022 looks set to be the year she takes the acting and music world by storm, and we can’t wait to see her progress.