From Film Student to Netflix Star — 'Elite' Actor Omar Ayuso Burns Up Instagram

Tuesday September 15, 2020

Last March, when Netflix released the third season of "Elite," The Cut critic Kerensa Cadenas wrote "there's no better time than now to binge this incredibly addictive Spanish teen drama about three working-class friends who receive scholarships to a luxe private school after their school physically collapses under mysterious circumstances."

Much like "Gossip Girl," the show depicts a world of upper class louche life amongst the pampered young rich but the show's hook is more than just all-night parties and lots of sex - in the first episode, there is a murder and one of these privileged students committed the crime.

"The murder reverberates throughout the show's later seasons, which ends up being one of the most surprising things about 'Elite,'" writes Cadenas. "A show like this, with this premise, could easily be completely vacuous (which I would still obviously watch), but 'Elite' takes care with its capital-I issues, from cancer to class warfare."

One breakout actor from the series is Omar Ayuso, who plays Omar Shanaa, described by Interview as a tender and tenacious closeted Muslim. The role "gave the actor, who is openly gay, plenty to chew on, both on and off the screen," writes Interview Magazine in an interview with the film student-turned-actor.

"Ultimately, everything you put into a character is yours," he tells Interview. "You can change the context, change the name, change the people you interact with, but in the end, all the love, all the hate, and all the fear you put into a character, it's the hatred and fear that you have inside."

On the show he develops a relationship with Ander Muñoz who is played by Arón Piper, and Ayuso's relationship with his co-star both on-and-off the screen has led to the meme "Omander" to be coined by their fans.

"Ayuso will still be in the 'Elite' cast for the upcoming fourth season of the series," to his Wiki page, Ayuso lives in Madrid, considers himself a social activist, has a tattoo of a flame and an eye on his hand inspired by artist Ricardo Cavolo, and is in a relationship with artist Alonso Díaz as of last March.

There's little wonder why the 22-year old actor has nearly 4.5 million followers on Instagram, where he may share too much: a screengrab of a shirtless Ayuso videoconferencing with another nude male that was censored by the social media platform.

But, he told Interview, "In the end, a social network is nothing more than an expression of the version of ourselves that we wish to be," he says. "It's a showcase for what I want to talk about."

Check out some of Instagram posts below: