Eric Effiong has a big storyline for Netflix’s Sex Education. He’s been quite the piece for the all-star cast of the series, making him a big part of the show’s success.
Quite similarly, Ncuti Gatwa, who plays the role of Eric, has been on quite the journey himself to lead him to the show’s starring role. The Scottish lad play Eric brilliantly in the series about an overall awkward high school environment with friends like Otis (Asa Butterfield) and his sex therapist mother, Jean (Gillian Anderson).
Before landing the role, the Sex Education star Ncuti Gatwa was homeless.
At the age of 21, Gatwa moved from Scotland to London. There, he was unable to adjust to the finances he needed to live––including a home.
The Big Issue magazine asked questions about the topic to which Gatwa responded with a variety of answers.
“I am from Scotland and moved down to London when I was 21. I was working constantly – and at some good places – I spent a year at the Globe Theatre, I did a lot of work at Kneehigh, who are a physical theatre company.”
“But you have to feed yourself, you have to get to work, with rent, bills, travel, days off from temping to go to an audition. I couldn’t seem to handle it all financially.”
“I was supposed to move into a new place and it fell through. So for five months before Sex Education, I was couchsurfing among all my friends. I didn’t have a home. I was homeless.”
“The only thing stopping me from being on the streets was the fact I had friends. But you can use up that goodwill. Or you feel scared to ask people for help. Your pride kicks in.”
Even before his audition for Sex Education, Gatwa relied on his friends. His friend apparently transferred 10 quid just so he can top up his Oyster card. Thanks to Gatwa’s friends, we feel as though we’re also friends with the star.
Having experienced it himself, now Gatwa is an ambassador for youth homelessness charity Centrepoint. A true inspiration to all of us.
If that doesn’t push you to watch the upcoming season two of Sex Education on Netflix on January 17, I don’t know what will.