5 Things to Know About Breakout 13 Reasons Why Star Dylan Minnette (He's in a Band!)
Minnette's social media following has ballooned since the new series hit Netflix
If you’ve browsed the internet at all lately, you’ve definitely heard about 13 Reasons Why — in fact, you may have binge-watched the entire thing in one weekend. (It’s okay. That’s what Netflix is for.)
In the month since its release, Netflix’s brand new series, adapted from Jay Asher’s novel of the same name about a high school rocked by a girl’s suicide, has taken social media by storm — and, as a result, catapulted many of its young actors into fame. The show’s biggest breakout star thus far? Dylan Minnette.
Minnette plays Clay Jensen, a junior at Liberty High School who takes us through the story of Hannah Baker, a fellow student who recorded a series of cassettes about her decision to commit suicide — each tied to a specific individual at the school. Whether you’re hungry for more information about the show or just started watching, here are five things to know about Minnette, the 20-year-old actor captivating viewers on screens everywhere.
1. You’ve definitely seem him before.
Jensen made his on-screen debut in a 2005 episode of Drake & Josh, and in the years that followed made appearances on Two and a Half Men, Grey’s Anatomy and Prison Break, in which he played a young version of Michael Scofield.
He also played Jack and Juliet’s son David Shephard on Lost, and First Son Jerry Grant Jr. on Scandal. Most recently, he starred in the 2015 movie Goosebumps and 2016 thriller Don’t Breathe.
2. He has a very passionate fanbase.
Since 13 Reasons Why hit Netflix, Minnette’s social media following has ballooned — particularly on Instagram, where he now has 2.6 million followers. As it turns out, people have a real soft spot for little old Clay. See for yourself:
3. Sorry to disappoint, but he has girlfriend.
Minnette has been dating 19-year-old actress Kerris Dorsey for quite some time now. The two costarred as siblings in the 2014 film Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day and regularly post pictures together on social media. Long story short, they’re adorable.
4. He’s in a band.
Yup, he does it all. Minnette is in a four-person band called Wallows with three friends: Braeden Lemasters, Cole Preston and Zack Mendenhall. Previously known as The Narwhals, the band dropped their first-ever single this month, “Pleaser,” available on Spotify and other streaming services.
5. He sees a lot of himself in Clay.
While filming the show, Minnette began to develop a true connection to his character.
“I would go home and sleep for a few hours, wake up and go to work and learn the material again,” Minnette told PEOPLE at a Netflix junket in February. “So my life wasn’t escaping the character — you can’t really escape it. At the same time, I started to see so much of myself in Clay, and see so much of Clay in me that sometimes I’d be on set and it would affect me a lot more.”
“It was really interesting to see the difference of everyone involved in the cast and on the show from the beginning to the end,” he added. “At the first couple of table reads, everyone was just kind of laughing, or others were a little nervous and doing their thing. By the end, everyone was in tears. They were so attached at that point. It was really amazing to see.”
13 Reasons Why is currently streaming on Netflix.
If you or someone you know is struggling with depression, please call 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or visit the National Institute of Mental Health online at nimh.nih.gov. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is open 24 hours a day. Call 1-800-273-8255.