By Samantha Highfill
May 16, 2019 at 03:24 PM EDT
Shane Harvey/The CW; Warner Bros. Pictures

Daniel Bae and Reggie Mantle don’t have much in common. Reggie likes sports; Daniel likes writing. Reggie loves his car; Daniel takes the subway. But for Charles Melton, both characters allow him to pull from different aspects of himself. “With the more work I get, I’m learning to draw from certain periods of my life and amplify it or bring it to light,” Melton says.

For Reggie, Riverdale‘s favorite wingman, that means channeling some past experiences. “I was a football player,” Melton says. “I can relate to the athlete’s mentality and the short temper. That’s not to say that I’m short-tempered, but I can really get into that with Reggie Mantle.”

But for Melton, playing Daniel Bae, the male lead in The Sun Is Also a Star, offers him a new, exciting opportunity. “I’ll tell you what, Reggie Mantle’s special but Daniel Bae? There’s something very, very special about playing this character,” he says. “There’s a lot more similarities that I have with Daniel Bae than I have with Reggie Mantle. There’s something vulnerable and loving about Daniel. I’m a hopeless romantic and he’s a hopeless romantic, and he’s got this fearlessness of telling someone that he loves them and it’s fate that we’ve met and there’s a reason why. Those are things I’ve felt in my real life that I haven’t said because I didn’t want to scare anybody away. But still, there’s truth behind it.”

Let’s hope Daniel has better luck with his love life than Reggie (who — SPOILER ALERT! — lost Veronica to Archie in Riverdale‘s season 3 finale).

The Sun Is Also a Star hits theaters Friday.

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