Dylan Sprouse is a man of many talents. You may know him as Zack from “The Suite Life of Zack and Cody”, but this Sprouse twin has come a long way from his days as a wildly famous Disney channel star. Just released today was Dylan’s latest film, Banana Split, where he plays the role of Nick alongside actor and author of the script, Hannah Marks (April). The movie tracks the complicated friendship of two high school girls who attempt to navigate the mess of a love triangle they’ve tangled themselves in with—you guessed it—Dylan’s heartthrob of a character.
I was lucky enough to get the opportunity to chat with Dylan on the phone this week about the film, his oblivion to his clout in the fashion world, the biggest style differences between him and his twin brother, Cole, and much more. Dylan is known for taking on a variety of projects from music videos to modeling, and today, we got to break down all of his facets and hear first-hand what he thinks about each.
I just watched Banana Split last night and loved it. How did you become involved in the project because I know you filmed it a little while ago, right?
Yeah, this was a while ago. It’s was almost three years ago and I became involved in it when the script was circulating around the agency and creating a little bit of buzz. Somehow it landed on my desk and when I read through it, it really bashed my expectations about what I thought this “rom-com” would be. It was super quick, fun, and a comedic leak, so I was intrigued by it. I expressed interest in playing Nick and we just all hit it off and the next thing I knew I was up in Syracuse with them filming. It was a really nice old school way of conducting business to go film a movie.
What was it like being in high school again for this film? Was this character anything like how you were in high school or not at all?
Well, I had a very unique high school experience being that it was pretty much just my brother and I in a room together. But I have had a lot of experience with public school and I’ve had a lot of experience with dorming and college life and all of that.
I think what’s most important though about that character (Nick) is that I had a lot of experience being an 18-year-old man and I feel like that is very important to Nick as he’s trying to find his place and deal with the heartbreak of April at the same time and trying to understand and identify what he needs and wants.
Acting clearly isn’t your only passion from what I know about you. You run a meadery, you grew up acting and clearly still are, you model, you’ve even been in music videos. So I’m curious what is it that initially attracts you to a project?
It sounds a little cliché, but I tend to just go where the fun is and really I just dissect it from a level of whether or not it would be a fun time to work with those people. I base a lot of this stuff on the initial conversation. But in terms of films, at least, it’s kind of dependent on the character, primarily—if it’s something different from what I’ve done before or if it seems like it would be interesting side-by-side to other work that I do. Then also it really comes down to a good script. If I like the script or I like the idea of the project that I’m working on, I’ll do it.
So are you aware that you’ve become a fashion icon these days?
No, I’m not.
How would you say that your style has evolved over the years as you’ve become more intertwined in the industry?
I’ve certainly become more comfortable in my own skin and I’ve leaned into a lot of what I like on first instinct. I realized that in terms of things that I wear and even brands that I’m wearing, I’ll usually go into the fitting room and when I come out the people styling will be like, “Oh really?” And I’ll say, “Yeah.” And they’ll be like, “Okay, I haven’t seen someone do that before.”
I’m trying to bring my own personality to it. I think what’s interesting—really at the heart of what’s interesting for style and fashion—is seeing what people can do with it and seeing how they bring their own selves into it. I think that’s what I really became comfortable with in the last few years.
Our readers really love you. I don’t know if you remember, but back when Barbara Palvin (Dylan’s girlfriend) walked in the Victoria’s Secret fashion show, we actually posted a video of your reaction to her on the runway and it went viral. Well, I’m actually the literal person who took that video.
Oh yeah—no way! It’s nice to meet the person behind the video of the VS show. It was awesome. I’m glad you took it. It was a sweet moment. I look back on it fondly because that was my first time seeing something like that and I was really proud. So I’m happy to have met you.
In addition to being your fan, our readers also happen to be fans of you and your brother. What would you say are some of the biggest differences between you and Cole’s style?
Cole’s style is anything that I wear six months later, that’s probably the biggest style difference. He’s going to kill me for saying that. I think Cole and I’s style is similar, and our father is responsible for this and our upbringing in Ojai, California. We do have a tendency to wear stuff that’s a little bit Western and we do try to incorporate that and so it’s a lot of workwear mixed in; alternative stuff.
Cole definitely is better at utilizing fabrics than I am, if we’re getting into the nitty-gritty. He’s got a real eye for thrifting too, which I don’t necessarily have. If I go for thrift, I’ll go for something that has a nostalgia to me, where Cole will find something that’s good, actually. But the main differences are probably colors, even. You can see, we just wear very different color palettes and that seems to be a trend. I tend to like stuff that almost looks a little bit medieval or gothic, or a little more rock and roll where Cole will go a little more like cozy boy and a little more workwear shit.
Do you have a favorite outfit you’ve worn either on the red carpet or to a show? One that really stood out to you?
Recently, we were dressed by Versace for a Vanity Fair party, both Barbara and I. And that was just a dream come true. These looks were fitted to us, one of a kind pieces, and then we got to not only meet but have a nice conversation with Donatella herself and that was really special. It was also special because Versace, in my mind, had formally been out of my comfort zone a little bit, just because of the way that they were utilizing shades and color and materials. And then when I wore it I was like, I feel like a fucking king. It made me get it. I was like, I get why and how skilled they are. Barbara just looked like a goddess, too. She looked like Venus or something, oh my God. It’s just how ethereal and special those pieces are, I was enamored.
Lastly, I’d love to ask you about All-Wise, your meadery, and if there’s anything that our readers can do to support you during this time? How are the state of things right now in light of what’s going on in the world?
That’s a good question. It’s an interesting time. We were currently in the midst of building out our bar when all of this hit. So we had heard that the virus was coming, both me and my business partner, Matt Kwan, and decided to, before any of it reached New York, brew a couple of batches so that we could put them in the fermentors and just let them ride out. And I’m glad that we did because now we’re still brewing and we’re still operating, but no one is going into the brewery.
It’s been particularly sad and kind of hard to see the operations on the bar come to a halt. Not because I want to see it get done, but because of seeing the effect that it’s had on our builders and our general contractor. It’s a tough time. And I think this is a major economical disaster, in truth.