Excitedly talking over one another as I wrangle them for our interview, Netflix's Outer Banks cast seems like a fun bunch. Chase Stokes, who stars as rugged teen heartthrob John B., lies on the floor while answering my questions. Madelyn Cline, who plays Sarah, is barefoot after a long day of wearing heels. The five actors who make up the series' lead cast — Stokes, Cline, Madison Bailey, Jonathan Daviss, and Rudy Pankow — have worked together for less than a year, but playing close friends has clearly rubbed off on them.
The latest addition to Netflix’s slate of teen dramas, Outer Banks (available on the streamer April 15) tells the story of a tight-knit group of locals in the titular beach town of North Carolina. What they hope to be a fun summer turns out to be the most dangerous time of their lives when they uncover a mystery that leads them on a high-stakes treasure hunt — all taking place before, during, and in the aftermath of a major hurricane.
From the sound of it, the cast had just as much fun filming the show as fans will watching it. "It's like a traveling circus," Stokes says about the on-set vibe.
Bailey, who plays Kiara, elaborates: "We had a lot of say in what we got to do; we didn’t have marks. It was like, wherever we go, cameras go."
Off-camera, the cast grew close over weekend trips, late-night hangouts, and an IRL natural disaster: While filming in Charleston, South Carolina, (about a seven-hour drive from the Outer Banks) last summer, they were all forced to evacuate the city when Hurricane Dorian loomed toward them. "We dipped and went to Asheville, North Carolina," Bailey recalls of the very on-brand bonding experience.
While Outer Banks promises (and delivers on) tons of adventure, it’s the dynamic between the characters the cast is most excited for fans to see.
“These kids have this unrelenting ability to go to the end of the world for each other and do whatever is necessary to make sure that somebody that they love and care about is taken care of,” Stokes says.
Cline adds on: “That’s the thing I think none of us really wanted to falsify — like, the real emotions you’re going through, what it feels like to be a teenager. We didn’t want to bullsh*t,” she says. “The chemistry between everyone was so incredible, like, the casting was amazing and so we really bonded as a group.”
Pankow (JJ on the show) sums it up pretty well: “You can say we’re method."
Outer Banks is available on Netflix beginning April 15.