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elcome to I Heart Madelyn, a fansite dedicated to actress Madelyn Cline. You might know Madelyn from her breakout role as Sarah Cameron in Netflix's series Outer Banks. Madelyn can next be seen in Rian Johnson's Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery. This fansite aims to update you with the latest news and photos on Madelyn's career. Be sure to look around the site and enjoy your stay! Thank you for visiting and come back soon!
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Mar 10 | 2024 Vanity Fair Oscar Party (Inside)
24 Feb 2023

Madelyn Cline for InStyle Australia

Written by Emily

Madelyn is featured on the digital cover of InStyle Australia with a brand new shoot! Check out the photos in the gallery and her interview below!

Sitting alone in her Los Angeles apartment one night, Madelyn Cline started to cry. It was 2020 (so, well, you know what that means) and her Netflix series, Outer Banks, was set to premiere the next day. It was Cline’s first lead role and she was “hoping for the best but expecting the worst”. Which naturally, meant crying at home by herself. “I was just thinking like, ‘dang, we just shot this thing and we had the best time doing it, and what if it comes out and nobody likes it and we never get to do it again?” the 25-year-old remembers. “So I kind of let myself feel all the sad emotions about it. And I just came to a place of acceptance where I was like, ‘You know what, I’ve had this wonderful experience, I’ve learned so much, I’ve met some great people, and if I never get to do it again, at least I have the memory of it.’”

As fate would have it, Cline’s worst case scenario remained a figment of her imagination. Outer Banks was one of Netflix’s biggest series in 2020 (saying something for a year where everyone treated watching television like a competitive sport), got picked up for a second season and when that dropped in 2021, it joined an elite club of series that hit over 2 billion minutes of viewing in a single week across its 20 episodes. The series follows a group of teens from a small South Carolina town where people are organised in a caste-like system which separates the upper class (“Kooks”) from the working-class (“Pogues”). Cline plays Sarah Cameron, who is a Kook with a rebellious streak who invariably gets caught up with the Pogues when they decide to hunt for lost treasure and falls in love with one, too. Almost overnight, it delivered Cline a sizable and very passionate young fanbase: to-date, she has over 20 million followers across Instagram, Twitter and TikTok who hang off her every word.

When we speak, Cline is Zooming me from inside her car, on the way to get ready for the Outer Banks season 3 premiere — their first for the show due to the pandemic circumstances in which it originally aired. “It’s funny because like, I don’t know, it felt a little like a pipe dream, you know?” she tells me, sounding a bit giddy about the prospect. “We were just like, ‘are we ever gonna have a chance to properly have a party to celebrate this show? We recently had a really nice dinner with [Netflix CEO] Ted Sarandos and he was explaining all the activations we’re doing for this season, which are just so fun and so cool and so engaging. You know, I’ve seen stuff for Stranger Things and other shows for Netflix, and I’ve always been like, that’s so cool. And now we get it for our show, I can’t shut up about it.”

At the premiere, she’ll walk the carpet in a shimmering baby blue Stella McCartney dress— a designer who Cline says is one of her favourites. “Stella is so cool and so rock ‘n’ roll,” she tells me, explaining that the glamour of the red carpet is still something she’s adjusting to. “Me, in my daily life, I walk into my closet and I get really overwhelmed, so I end up wearing the same five outfits,” — a uniform of black or neutrals that she describes self-deprecatingly as “couch potato chic, if you will.” Nonetheless, working with celebrity stylist Mimi Cuttrell is always going to put you in good stead. Also counting the Hadid sisters, Iris Law and Ariana Grande among her clientele, Cuttrell is something of a go-to for the fashion girls who get it. Cline says working with her has been formative for her sense of self in the spotlight. “She’s really good at reading situations and putting me in something that doesn’t wear me,” she explains. “And I really appreciate that.”

Growing up in South Carolina with her estate agent mum and engineer dad, Cline’s upbringing was quiet and imbued her with an independent streak. An only child, she spent her childhood balancing homeschooling with lessons at the local college, working at a barn (she’s a self-confessed horse girl) and dance classes. “I learned from a young age how to manage my own time,” she explains. “I’d work at the barn in the mornings, then I had dance classes at night and I would do my schoolwork in the meantime. It was very nice and it taught me independence from a young age, which I always really valued.”

She started going to auditions in school, but treated it as nothing more than a hobby and continued through college, which is when she booked small roles on Stranger Things and The Originals and landed at a crossroads. “I went to the dean’s office because I got my schedule for both of those and it completely conflicted with my class schedule,” she tells me. “So I sat down with him and I explained the situation and he was like, ‘well, I hate to do this because it’s really great what’s happening for you, but you can’t miss school.’ It was kind of an either-or situation. So I chose acting.” Cline dropped out of college and moved to Los Angeles only knowing three people (her agents). “I thought it was exciting, which, I think about it now and I’d be terrified if I did that again,” she laughs. “I wanted to take a gap year before college and my parents weren’t big fans of that, so when I left college, it kind of felt like the gap year that I wasn’t able to have. It just felt like a big adventure— a cool, big, expensive adventure.”

A few years later, she booked Outer Banks and I don’t need to tell you what came next. Now, when you go from being a relative unknown to having millions of followers in a matter of weeks, it comes with some steep learning curves. “I feel like nobody’s ever prepared to lose anonymity,” she reflects on her unique experience, pausing for a beat before continuing. “It’s really, really odd. But it is also, you know, it’s a funny double-edged sword. Like, on one hand it’s a sign that people love what you’re doing and that’s the most invigorating feeling ever because sometimes, part of putting a project out there, it’s like you’re putting your heart on screen. And so in a way, the loss of anonymity is like a great sign. But at the same time, it’s really like, all of a sudden it feels like there are a lot of cooks in the kitchen.”

For young women in the spotlight especially, there’s a specific kind of thirst for insight into every aspect of their lives. When they happen to be in a relationship with one of their co-stars, that’s cranked up to the nth degree. In Cline’s case, that meant people were fervently invested in her relationship with Chase Stokes, her co-star who she started dating during the first season. The couple, young and very much in love, were understandably happy to share their status with the world. “The crazy thing is, when you’re going through an experience like [Outer Banks’ huge premiere success] and you know, you’re in love, like, you want to shout it from the rooftop,” Cline says of how she felt during those early stages of fame.

It’s an understandable response to the situation; who among us hasn’t felt the rush of fresh love and wanted to yell about it? But eventually, they learnt the consequences of such transparency during their break up in 2021 when everyone wanted to know what was going on and crucially, how it would impact the future of Outer Banks. “What I’ve been learning is ultimately, what I do and don’t want to keep for myself,” she explains diplomatically. “That’s been a really big lesson because my life has become so public, you know. And that’s not just my love life. There’s so many other aspects to my life that I wanna keep from myself and that’s just one. But it’s about learning boundaries, for sure.”

It’s a lesson that’ll no doubt serve her as she continues her ascent as one of Hollywood’s most in-demand young actors. She got a taste for life beyond Banks recently, when she starred in Rian Johnson’s mega hit, Knives Out: Glass Onion. For a person who grew up watching films like Almost Famous on repeat, the experience of working alongside people such as Kate Hudson was a trip. “I really was just like, ‘okay, be cool, be cool, be cool. Don’t freak out. Don’t freak out,” she says of the first time she stepped onto the set in Greece. Continuing, Cline recalls a poignant moment from their third day of filming where the cast were hanging out between takes in one of the main cabins of the yacht they shot the film on. “Kate and Katherine [Hahn] had their feet propped up on the bed, talking and they both had their books,” she recalls. “Jess [Henwick] and I were sitting on the floor. Dave [Bautista] was sitting over in a corner, I think Daniel [Craig] was in and out and Janelle [Monae] was off somewhere very, very focused. And I just remember like, kind of looking around the room thinking, ‘how the hell did I get here?’

“Then one of the cabin crew comes in and they’re like, ‘Dolphins!’ And everybody perked up and we ran to the balconies on either side of the cabin and there were little screams, like this childlike joy of looking out onto the Grecian coastline and there are these dolphins that are playing alongside the boat. It was just all very thrilling. I remember looking at Katherine and she was like, ‘Can you believe this is our job?’ And I was like, ‘No.’”

Films like Glass Onion will become par for the course for Cline, who name checks Natalie Portman as someone whose career she most admires for her longevity, versatility and depth. “I think her choices are amazing,” she says. “She goes from a gritty indie-style film, to a blockbuster to rom-com. Her career has just been very colourful and she’s just so good.” If Cline stays on course, the same will be said of her one day.

Outer Banks Season 3 is streaming on Netflix from February 23.

InStyle Australia

24 Feb 2023