KJ Apa is sharing the life lessons he learned from his Riverdale dad, Luke Perry, as he continues to reel from losing the man he calls “a role model.”
The hunky actor was at the premiere for his new Netflix movie, The Last Summer which is streaming now, when he was, of course, asked about Perry’s sudden passing. Apa spoke to US Weekly to remember the great man and the lessons his on-screen father taught him.
“I think Luke had an amazing ability to make every single person in the room feel very welcome and feel really comfortable. He would do anything you can to make everyone feel comfortable. And I think, for me, that was something that I was always in awe about,” the 21-year-old shared with the magazine.
It has taken the New Zealand native a while to be able to speak out about his friend, and even now it makes him uncomfortable. Once news of the Beverly Hills 90210 alum’s death broke, Apa was plagued by people looking for a response, especially on social media. However, the young actor took time to process the loss, before sharing a tribute to his friend.
Perry’s death is still “fresh” for the cast of Riverdale. Apa admitted he finds it very difficult to talk about the late Hollywood heartthrob. When he is asked about Perry, Apa tries to pay homage in a way that is worthy of Perry, including sharing the lessons he learned from him and what he admired most about the 52-year-old.
“He never forgot about people from day one. He remembered everyone’s names. He kept in touch with high school friends from, like, 30 years ago, to, like, right up until the day that he passed away. So yeah, I mean, he’s my role model. And he always will be,” Apa shared with US Weekly regarding what he admired about Perry the most was his ability to stay humble, despite his successful career.
KJ Apa learned a lot from working with the iconic Luke Perry before his death. The two men may have only worked together for a couple of years, but the young star learned valuable lessons that he will last him a lifetime.
Perry’s last episode of Riverdale aired on April 24th. The show has not yet revealed plans of how they will deal with the loss of the actor onscreen. Fred Andrews was sent out of town in the first episode filmed following the late actor’s death.