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“I’m looking for a couch right now for my apartment,” Joe Keery says as he sits down onto a rather worn-in L-shape, giving it a once over. The sectional at hand is not in the running — it belongs to the Brooklyn photo studio where Keery has just wrapped shooting — but when you’re living in a “barren” New York apartment, some seven months into having moved to the city, couch hunting can consume your thoughts. 

Though he admits to liking living in his empty space, Keery has every intention of properly settling into his new home — he’s just been a teensy bit busy. The 31-year-old, who became globally known at the age of 23 when “Stranger Things” premiered on Netflix, has only just now stopped a whirlwind year of shooting a string of new projects back to back, the first of which debuts this fall. It’s a new stage in the actor’s life, as he prepares for “Stranger Things” to end with its next and final season (whenever that may film, Hollywood strikes depending) and ushers in a new chapter of his career. The whole moment felt like the right time for him to leave Los Angeles, where he’d been living when not in Georgia for the show, and make the move back east. (He’s originally from Boston.) 

“I was looking for a change in my life,” Keery says, stretching into the sofa. “I had been working [nonstop] for around a year: starting last June pretty much up to this June, I was on the road. I kind of felt like my time in L.A. was coming to a close, and I just wanted to change it up for various reasons. And New York has always been a place that I wanted to live. I really missed a walking town. I love to just put my headphones in and walk around.”

The anonymity that indulgence requires might not stick with the laid-back actor for long. In November he’ll be seen in the fifth installment of “Fargo” on FX, alongside Jon Hamm and Juno Temple. He stars in the indie movie “Finalmente L’alba” with Lily James and Willem Dafoe, which will premiere at the Venice Film Festival in a few short weeks, and later will be seen alongside Liam Neeson in the sci-fi movie “Cold Storage.” 

He was drawn to “Fargo” by his respect for its creator, Noah Hawley, as well as the way its ties dark comedy with, well, darkness. The new “Fargo” world is set in 2019 and introduces viewers to Dot, played by Juno Temple, a North Dakota housewife with a secret past that leads her to become a wanted person. Keery plays Gator Tillman, the son of the local sheriff, played by Jon Hamm. 

“It was clear that he’s a pretty deeply conflicted character. Right away. And at the core there are major daddy issues,” Keery says of Gator.

To create a father-son bond, Hamm and Keery leaned on hockey, going to several Calgary Flames games together over the six months they spent shooting in the Canadian town.

“We had a lot of downtime, we watched a bunch of football, we went to dinner and stuff,” he says. “It was just a real, real pleasure to be around him. [Jon,] Sam Spruell and I had a lot of scenes together, and to have those two guys, who between them have years and years of experience, that’s the best part about this whole job. Meeting the other actors, meeting people and talking and hearing their story and what their experience has been. I love that. I feel like I can learn so much from other people. So I  just tried to keep my eyes peeled and learn from them.”

Keery’s motivations for choosing each of the projects came out of a desire to try something new and different from “Stranger Things,” but now that he’s on the other side of his year on the go and settling into his new home, he’s reexamining things. 

“It has changed the way that I feel like I will approach choosing things or pursuing things in the future,” he says. “I’m just really focusing in on the things that are exciting and challenging and putting 100 percent of myself into one thing at a time.” Not that it wasn’t his approach before, but rather now, “I feel like I’ve learned a lot about how to do that. To travel and be on the road and be away from friends and family and still remain focused. It’s been a good year of transformation.”

“Stranger Things” is promised for one more final season, which will presumably be filmed once the strikes end. For Keery, it’s a bittersweet moment, but one he’s ready for.  

“It does feel like it’s time. It won’t be easy for it to end. I mean, I owe my whole career to being on that show and all the opportunities that I had since are because of that show,” he says. “So it’s very convoluted. There’s a sense of relief, there’s a sense of sadness. I guess my goal is to just really soak it up as much as I can while we’re doing it, and not take any of it for granted because it’s been an amazing ride with such great people. And then once it’s done, move forward and try to just hold on to the joy that we had when we were making it….Everything has a beginning and the middle and an end. It’ll be nice to have the end of this too.”

In the midst of his marathon year of shooting, Keery also released his album, “Decide,” last September. He’s back at work on new material these days, spending time at Electric Lady Studios in Greenwich Village and hopes to have something released soon. 

“I love being able to be in whatever setting and create something from start to finish right there on the day. The process of making a movie is long and arduous and there is a certain amount of joy to be taken from doing a scene very well, but to be able to create a song and immediately hear the results of how it went, having something that has been created that didn’t exist at the beginning of the day, that is so cool,” he says of the creative differences between music and acting. “It makes you think about any day that you go in or you don’t go in, I think about, ‘man, what could have happened, what could have been created?’”

Lately, he’s interested in trying something new and putting less pressure on himself when it comes to music

“I was on vacation with my family and I was just talking to my sister about this at breakfast, how I guess the goal is ‘something is better than nothing.’ To just do the practice of going in and putting in the work, and not being too precious with any specific idea. And to just be productive and to put in the time, put the reps in. Because that’s how the people who are great at things do it. So I’m trying to do that.”

If it’s all sounding a bit go-with-the-flow, it’s a state Keery, like many actors, has had to become adjusted to, given the natural schedule of the profession. 

“It’s a little anxiety-inducing. You can pull your hair out sometimes, not knowing if you’re going to be at your house in a couple days, but that’s also the fun of it,” Keery says. “Generally the best things in life are also the worst things in life. It’s just like how people’s best qualities are always their worst qualities. I generally find that with life though, and it’s the great thing about the job. It’s also a little hard, too, but I’ll take it. In terms of hard things, the opportunities are worth it.”

This interview was conducted before the SAG-AFTRA strike.