Riverdale was easily one the this year's most buzzed about new shows. Surprising everyone, the murder mystery show based off Archie comics became an instant hit for the CW and Netflix. Not only did it make Archie characters newly relevant and weirdly sexy, it also made everyone remember former Disney Channel star Cole Sprouse.
Currently filming in Vancouver (love that BC tax credit!), it's not uncommon for fans to surround locations to catch a glimpse of the cast. Yesterday, one fan video showed the former Suite Life of Zack and Cody star, who plays Jughead, and Lili Reinhart, who plays Betty, confronting a busker.
The video shows Sprouse and Reinhart surrounded by an adoring crowd loudly explaining the "secrets of filming production." Telling the crowd that their location is given to the city before filming begins he also called the busker a "scam artist" and though much of what he says is inaudible, he's clearly pretty pissed off.
The busker didn't seem to relent to Sprouse's wishes explaining she's been performing at the location daily telling Sprouse, "So you guys came into where I perform? So you can't call me a scam artist because you guys came into where I perform." While it's uncertain how the situation was resolved (in the video Sprouse also asserts he was only asking her to stop playing for an hour). He awkwardly walked away, and it's not clear if the busker relented to the production's wishes.
Taking to social media, the busker (whose name was revealed to be Babe Coal) claimed Sprouse bullied her with his popularity. According to Global News Coal was asking for compensation from the crew if they wanted her to leave. Police arrived to the scene and made no arrests, though Coal allegedly "chose not to compromise"—whatever that means.
In a separate fan video posted on Twitter Sprouse—now out of Jughead costume—is seen breaking the busker's CD in half in front of another crowd of adoring fans. Yikes.
Of course, there's no way to know exactly what happened based on two videos. Filming a television show seems gruelling and shoots can go on for full days with very few breaks. Being interrupted when you're so close to being done work would probably drive most people up the wall, regardless of the power dynamic. Still, the optics of a famous actor talking down to a busker then later breaking their CD in front of a cheering crowd is arguably not the greatest PR move. It's like yelling at server—even if they've messed up, you just don't want to go that far.
At least he didn't get to Christian Bale levels of outrage, although seeing Jughead scream about someone messing up his scenes would have been something.
The Sprouse camp has yet to comment on the matter.
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