'To All the Boys' Star Lana Condor on Moving Beyond "Blonde, Blue-Eyed" Love Stories

Jordan Fisher Lana Condor Noah Centineo Netflix Premiere To All the Boys - Getty - H 2020
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Condor, Noah Centineo and Jordan Fisher star in a love triangle in the Netflix sequel 'To All The Boys: P.S. I Still Love You.'

To All The Boys: P.S. I Still Love You, the sequel to Netflix high school romance hit To All The Boys I've Loved Before, is back and continuing the love story of Lara Jean Covey (played by Lana Condor) and Peter Kavinsky (Noah Centineo) — until her past love John Ambrose McClaren (Jordan Fisher) re-enters the picture. 

With Condor at the forefront, the film — the second in the trilogy — aims to bring a fresh take to the rom-com, particularly with its diverse cast. 

"We have an Asian-American lead, which is awesome and gives us the opportunity to see that anybody can fall in love; it's not just your specific white, blonde, blue-eyed female" historically portrayed in love stories, Condor told The Hollywood Reporter at the sequel's Los Angeles premiere at the Egyptian Theatre on Monday. 

Fisher added that with characters of a variety of races and sexual orientations "being so beautifully represented across the board" in a way that more accurately reflects the make-up of America, "as a young person watching a rom-com, to be able to look at your main protagonist and antagonist and everyone in between, and find somebody in there where you can go 'Oh, me too' is so necessary."

Centineo, returning to his breakout role, also highlighted how the franchise focuses on teen love rather than 20-somethings like most rom-coms, remembering how he "grew up with 13 Going on 30, Failure to Launch and How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days and those were older, this is definitely a younger generational rom-com." 

The film follows up the 2018 hit — based on Jenny Han's trio of teen novels of the same name — which focuses on high schooler Lara Jean as she writes letters professing love to her crushes until they are accidentally mailed to those boys, culminating in a relationship with her ultimate crush, Peter. 

Han, who serves as an executive producer on the trilogy, said that her story modernizes young relationships with "spending time to talk about consent and open conversations — that conversation has evolved a lot over time, even 10 years ago you were seeing less of that and young people are at the forefront of those conversations."

The romantic flick also comes at a time when rom-coms are making a comeback on streamers as they've been largely phased out of theatrical release. Han said that having the movies on Netflix means "people being able to take off their makeup at night and turn on the movie and keep themselves company with it," as well as easier watching with friends and repeat views. 

Fisher, who said he's already witnessed the power of streaming by the continual new generations of kids watching his past Disney Channel show Liv and Maddie, celebrates Netflix's "ease of access, the algorithm pushing things back in front of other people's faces that maybe they missed out on when it first came out — the fact that a film that's been out for four or five months can be brand new to you in an instant is huge."

To All The Boys: P.S. I Still Love You, which also stars Holland Taylor, Ross Butler, John Corbett and Sarayu Blue, starts streaming Feb. 12.