KJ Apa Somberly Discusses His 'Close Relationship' With TV Dad Luke Perry
KJ Apa is opening up about Luke Perry's death.
During his Friday appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, the Riverdale star somberly discussed Perry's "shocking" death, and the effect their "close relationship" had on him. Perry tragically died in March after suffering a stroke. He was 52.
"It's not every day you come across a guy like Luke," Apa told Fallon. "Luke is the kind of person who did everything he can to make whoever you are, no matter how big or small you are, feel comfortable and feel welcome. It's hard to kind of put into words how that makes me feel."
Perry played Apa's father, Fred Andrews, on the CW series, but according to the young actor, he also acted like his dad in real life.
"He would call my parents every week and keep them updated on how I'm doing," Apa explained. "If I had a cold or something, he'd be like, 'I got him. I brought some Gatorade to his apartment the other day.'... Him and my dad were always texting each other."
"He made such a huge effort from the very beginning," Apa remembered. "I wish I could be like that."
While tributes from the Riverdale and Beverly Hills, 90210 casts and other celebrities flooded in following Perry's death, Apa shared a close-up pic of the actor boating with the simple caption, "Rest in Love bro."
"That’s my favorite photo of Luke," Apa shared on Friday. "I just think he’s in complete and utter peace in that photo, you know what I mean? He's living the dream."
Perry's last episode of Riverdale aired on Wednesday. His last scene was one in which he sweetly offered some fatherly advice to Archie (Apa). It's unclear how the Riverdale team will address Fred's absence from the rest of season three (three new episodes have yet to air) or the series as a whole.
While speaking with ET last month, Riverdale showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa said he was still trying to process Perry's death.
"You know, honestly, we are I think all still in shock and are all still processing and grieving," he shared. "We know that we have to address it in some way, but we're giving ourselves a little bit of time and space before we figure out the best way to honor him."
See more in the video below.
Luke Perry's Final 'Riverdale' Episode: Fred's Last Scene With Archie
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'Riverdale' Creator Opens Up About How Luke Perry's Death Will Be Addressed On Screen