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Inside Rising Star Jaden Michael’s Colin in Black & White Premiere

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Inside Rising Star Jaden Michael’s Colin in Black & White Premiere

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Just a few days after attending the Los Angeles premiere of his new Netflix series, Colin in Black & White, actor Jaden Michael is back to his regular life as an 18-year-old high school senior. “I’m trying to balance school and college applications,” Michael tells Vogue on the phone earlier today. “I applied to Harvard last night, and I still have to do my Yale application.”

Despite his college plans still being up in the air, the rising star has a bright future ahead of him, acting-wise. Michael is currently gaining buzz for his performance in Colin in Black & White, which premiered on October 29th. In it, he portrays former NFL player Colin Kaepernick during his high school years, following him through the experiences that led him to become an activist today. 

As a fan of Kaepernick, Michael was drawn to shedding light on his backstory. “When I was younger, I had a not-as-great understanding of Black Lives Matter and the political conversations he was having, but I did recognize how important it was for someone to use their platform for change,” says Michael. “The stories that hurt the most to tell, and the ones with the hardest conversations, are always the most powerful. It’s important to tell those stories to give others a different understanding of the situation.” 

Jaden Michael, right, with Colin Kaepernick and Ava DuVernay Photo: Getty Images

Considering he’s relatively new to red carpets—though he has starred in other acting projects, such as Vampires vs. the Bronx and The Get Down—Michael knew he wanted to bring a stellar fashion moment to the show’s premiere. “I love fashion, and I love putting together really weird pieces that might not work and just seeing how far I could push the needle,” he says. For the event, Michael opted for an all-white Issey Miyake suit that he was instantly drawn to. “[The texture] reminded me of a Pringles can,” says Michael. “I also liked the idea of wearing all-white. I knew Colin was wearing black, so it was a nice contrast.” He accessorized the look with Aporro jewelry and chunky Prada shoes. “I needed to not look as short next to Colin, so I was like, get me the highest platforms you can find,” says Michael. For the after-party, he then changed into a cream Ermenegildo Zegna knit sweater and wide-leg trousers. “I have extremely skinny legs, so I try to stray away from skinny jeans and accentuate my lack of calves,” he laughs. 

Overall, his favorite part of the experience was working with Kapernick and Ava DuVernay, who created the series together, and learning more about the athlete. “I didn’t know the trials and tribulations that it took to create someone who was brave enough and had the courage to put everything on the line,” says Michael of the activist. “I also didn’t realize how similar his experiences were to mine, growing up as a biracial teen in America.” As for premiere night? He enjoyed watching the audience. “It was really fun watching people’s reactions to the show,” says Michael. “But I don’t like watching myself on film, so I sat for the first episode—and then I left.”

Below, see how Michael got ready for his premiere. 

Photo: Matt Sayles/Netflix1/4

Going up, please.

Photo: Matt Sayles/Netflix2/4

Champagne problems: Off-White shoes vs. Prada shoes.

Photo: Matt Sayles/Netflix3/4

Photo: Matt Sayles/Netflix4/4

Key to my heart? Sushi.

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