Interview with Madeline Sunshine as Maxine in Flunk



How did you get into acting? What led to you joining the cast of Flunk?

Performing has been in my bones since childhood! From filming home videos to writing, rehearsing, staging, directing and starring in shows for my family; I’ve been drawn to the stage and screen for as long as I can remember. After honing my skills at 16th Street Actors Studio, I received an email from the studio about auditions for the new season of Flunk. I jumped at the opportunity to join the cast! Madeline Sunshine as Maxine

What unique insights do you bring to your character?

Much like Maxine, I sometimes find myself overly focused on routine and structures, convinced they’re the key to success. But now I’ve come to appreciate (and love) the value of spontaneity and adaptability. Some of my most memorable experiences and opportunities have come from taking a risk, putting myself out there and moving in the direction life is pushing me (not the direction I think is right). Finding a balance between structure and flexibility has been a rewarding journey for me, one that I hope Maxine will embark on as well.

Have you ever experienced similar situations to your character in real life?

Maxine’s wholehearted dedication to supporting her loved ones deeply resonates with me. I’m so fortunate to be surrounded by amazing friends and family, and there’s nothing more fulfilling than seeing them thrive and achieve their goals. Just as Maxine helps Astrid with her business, I strive to uplift and empower my friends; it brings me so much joy.


How would you have responded in your character’s situation?

Throughout the season, Maxine faced numerous difficult and uncomfortable situations and did so with grace and honesty (for the most part!). I admire her ability to communicate openly, a trait I continually strive to embody. While honesty can feel daunting and vulnerable, I’ve learned that expressing yourself authentically fosters deeper connections and mutual respect in all my relationships.


What’s a fun behind the scenes story you remember from filming Flunk season 5?

Emily and I were filming a scene on the beach and it was freeezzzinggggg. Between takes we would huddle together in our robes to stay warm, sharing giggles to fend off the chill. Despite the cold, it was moments like these that fostered such a special friendship between us.


What do you think the future holds for your character? What would you like to see happen to them, and why?

I envision Maxine channelling her love for helping others and her passion for fitness into a wellness venture, perhaps launching her own fitness club, brand or blog. Her dedication to empowering those around her, combined with her love for fitness makes this an exciting progression for her character.


What advice would you give to other actors starting out?

Surround yourself with a supportive community that uplifts and inspires you. It’s a tough industry to pursue but we do it because we love it, having an amazing circle of people is so important. Remind yourself why you love the craft and why you are pursuing it, and cherish the privilege we have getting to work in the arts, it’s a blessing that not everyone has access to, and I feel so grateful. Approach every interaction you have in life, on set, in audition rooms, with the barista at your coffee shops, with kindness and grace. Every single person you meet. And especially with yourself.


Outside of acting, what are your other hobbies and activities?

Beyond acting, I love yoga (just like Maxine!), snowboarding, reading and getting lost in a flea or farmers market. I love going to the theatre, art galleries, cafes, parks; anywhere that ignites my creativity and inspires me to embrace life fully. I moved to New York last year to study acting, and putting a podcast or some music on and exploring the city never gets old. People-watching is one of my favourite pastimes, which ties into my love of getting to play so many different ones when I’m acting.


What are your plans for the next 12 months?

I’m still living in New York and have truly fallen in love with the city, art and culture here. I’ve been so fortunate to work on a few acting projects over here and I plan to continue pursuing my craft whether it’s in the United States or back home in Australia.


How can the audience follow your career in the future?

My Instagram is @madelinesunshine_ and my website coming soon 😉

Binge watch the full Flunk season 5 now (including exclusive behind the scenes videos) on Vimeo.

Last modified: May 19, 2024

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