BOLD IN HIS PURSUIT
ACTOR FEATURED IN ICONIC | VOL.2 | ISSUE.22
Rob Raco is best known for playing ‘Joaquin DeSantos’ on CW’s “Riverdale”. Rob is currently Fendi Eyewear’s ambassador for the F/W collection alongside Kiernan Shipka. Along with acting, Rob also enjoys playing the drums. He currently plays drums in the band Legend with KJ Apa. Born and raised in Windsor, Ontario, Canada, he has recorded and toured professionally under various Canadian musical groups. He currently resides in Los Angeles.
Q. When did you start realizing you wanted to be an actor?
I honestly never wanted to be an actor. I’m very focused and have always been as a musician. This past year, I’ve really dug into the art and craft of acting. I pursue projects that mean something.
Q. Pursing acting can be incredibly challenging and a hard industry to break into, how did you first get your foot in the door when starting out?
I come from a music background. I fell into acting by accident by being with the right people. Our “industry” is so small. Whether a musician, actor, creator, you’re all in the mix. Once introduced to the right people, I gave it a big consideration and worked my ass off to get projects. It started with some great short films that worked me into the right mix of acting agencies, etc.
Q. In the beginning, was it you reaching out for work or your agency?
I was my own agent when I began this. I would message indie directors and try to be self-submitting on online casting sites. From there I reached out to a larger agency and was scouted by a manager.
Q. You starred in the popular tv series Riverdale, what was that experience like for you?
It was a really special experience. It taught me what I want and don’t want from a career and how I want to focus my energy professionally. It’s a very high paced production, so it was nice to work consistent hours and learn how to balance relationships in and out of the show.
Q. When you are filming on set, how do you fully immerse yourself into the character?
I find all the similarities that the character would have with me, Rob. It makes no sense to “act” anything so I do my research on what characteristics I’m unfamiliar with and try to orchestrate the perfect qualities for that role. It’s a constant learning process.
Q. Is there a role in a movie you would have loved to play in the past or current movies/shows?
II would love to have played Travis Bickle in Taxi Driver. There are so many layers to build and a fun project to fully immerse into. I absolutely love unapologetic acting. Unapologetic art, in general, is just genius and slowly disappearing in this generation. It’s great to see actors like Shia LaBeouf & Joaquin Phoenix go through a personal and professional journey and use it all to create art.
Q. What do you love spending your time doing when you do have downtime?
I need to be creative. I read, I build things, I work on my car, I model, I write music. I try to challenge myself and not focus on a result. It’s all useful to my acting career and it’s all really, really fun.
Q. What advice could you give to beginner performers to help them excel in the industry?
Read books. Watch people. Listen. Study. Love. Write. And when it’s hard and you have nothing left, you’ve only just begun. Keep going.
Q. What’s the biggest challenge now that you have built up your career?
The biggest challenge would be how to never get stuck in a role. I’m really focused on creating a plethora of characters in my career. I like to wear many masks and it’s all about timing and how to wear them at the right time. I’m not a one –trick-pony, so my biggest challenge is how and when to take the right jobs while also paying my bills.
Q. You are also a musician and are a part of your own band “Legend”! Tell us more about your band and the type of music you produce?
Legend is a result of KJ and I want more from just filming Riverdale together. KJ is such an incredible musician and although we both met while acting, the creative balance wasn’t met while filming. Our musical endeavors began years ago during season one and have continued until we decided to make it an official, living project. The music is rock and roll and really exciting.
Q. What is next for Rob Raco?
I’m excited for new acting projects in the wings. Legend will be releasing music and I started my journey in the fashion world at the beginning of this year. I’m only just getting started on some really great things ahead.
Q. Describe your personality in 3 words!
Focused. Creative. Sensitive.
Photographer: Shavonne Wong @shavonne.wong
Model: Rob Raco @robraco @platformprteam
MUA: Emily Zempel @exclusiveartists using Hanz De Fuko
Fashion Stylist:Adam Ballheim for the Only Agency
Photo Assistant: Zachary Lee Witt
📍Los Angeles, California