Hands-on producing! Selena Gomez didn’t just create a hit song for season 2 of 13 Reasons Why. The “Back to You” singer is also an executive producer on the Netflix drama and is a large part in the second season, star Justin Prentice, who plays villain Bryce Walker on the show, told Us Weekly.
“She’s fantastic. She’s the reason that this got made in the first place,” Prentice, 24, told Us at Nylon magazine and Popular TV’s UROK Foundation Charity event on Thursday, May 10. “She pops by set a lot. She comes up and will do dinners and talk about kind of character development, and story development, and that type of thing. She and her mother, Mandy Teefey, are both EPs on it. So they’re still very much involved.”
Gomez released a new song, “Back To You,” on Thursday that will be part of the season 2 soundtrack. “With this song, it’s a very special record. I want it to be a beautiful message in a really complicated way but really fun. But I think that ‘Back To You’ is more of my special project that I wanted to give to Season 2,” she said in an interview with Apple Music. “I just think that what I learned more than anything is just how making an impact can look differently. I think what we’re doing and what we’ve always wanted to talk about was genuinely just to care about people and to get it out in that certain way. Where nobody is trying to desensitize it. I think I just learned to be bold, to stand by what you believe in.”
Prentice also spoke to Us about playing the most hated character in the show. In season 1, Bryce raped both Hannah (Katherine Langford) and Jessica (Alisha Boe). To get in that mindset, he had to do a ton of research. “We had a really good team. A lot of good resources. I talked to several psychiatrists and sexual assault advocate experts for preventing sexual assault and kind of went back and forth to sort of piece it all together to make it as accurate as possible,” he said. “But yeah, he’s kind of an asshole, and I’m not usually. So it was a stretch.”
Dylan Minnette, Brandon Flynn, Miles Heizer and Kate Walsh also star in the drama.
Season 2 of 13 Reasons Why hits Netflix on Friday, May 18. Season 1 is currently streaming.