Amandla Stenberg on the most romantic thing anyone's ever done for her

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Photo credit: Hearst Owned
Photo credit: Hearst Owned

"Always make your own tea on set," Amandla Stenberg tells us, of the best piece of career advice she was ever given. "It's not necessarily just about the tea, you know. It's about ensuring that you're remaining an autonomous person who is taking care of your own needs."

When we meet, the 23-year-old is in London to promote her latest cinematic project, Dear Evan Hansen - the film adaptation of the hit Broadway and West End musical. Stenberg plays high-achieving student Alana in the movie, which features an all-star cast including Amy Adams, Julianne Moore, Ben Platt and Kaitlyn Dever.

In a change from the original, her character gets a new song, The Anonymous Ones, which Stenberg co-wrote specially for the film. The ballad deals with themes of empathy and understanding, and the idea that you might not realise if someone is silently struggling.

"It's cathartic," she tells us, of the film. "I think that audiences, and particularly young people, resonate with Dear Evan Hansen because it's about our universal vulnerabilities and fallibilities and the mental illness that we struggle with - that so many of us struggle with - but that it's hard to be open about."

Photo credit: Rich Fury - Getty Images
Photo credit: Rich Fury - Getty Images

She recommends seeing the film "especially if you're going through something, or you have kids who are going through something. It's a great space to have a conversation about mental health and hopefully feel seen and heard."

Watch our full interview with Stenberg above, in which she tells us what makes her happiest, her party trick, the most romantic thing anyone's ever done for her, and how The Hunger Games changed her life.

Dear Evan Hansen is in UK cinemas now.

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