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Kidsday chats with Jack Griffo of “The Thundermans”

Actor Jack Griffo, center, from Nickelodeon's

Actor Jack Griffo, center, from Nickelodeon's "The Thundermans," with Kidsday reporters, from left, Farah-Marie Khan, Mehmet Kayku, Nicholas Bracco and Christian Mieles. Photo Credit: Newsday / Pat Mullooly

We met actor Jack Griffo when he visited Manhattan recently. He stars as Max on the Nickelodeon show “The Thundermans.”

You have a pet on the show named Dr. Colosso. Do you have any pets in real life?

I did when I was your age. I had two dogs. [Their names were] Chewy, as in Chewbacca from “Star Wars,” and Bella. I have a bearded dragon as well.

What is your worst blooper?

Well, I forget lines sometimes. Forgetting lines is pretty normal. Other than that, once I came out with my zipper undone.

If you could be a superhero, what kind of powers would you want?

There are so many. I’d say teleporting, like Chloe, my little sister on the show. That’s a pretty good one; you can go anywhere, anytime.

Out of the rest of the Thundermans who do you think is the strongest?

Well, my dad has the super strength, but I guess the next in line would be me.

What was your first reaction when you found out you were picked to play Max Thunderman?

I was really happy. I really wanted to get the role. I had a couple of auditions for other Disney shows, but I wanted “The Thundermans,” and that’s what I ended up getting. I was extremely happy.

What do you like more: acting or singing?

I like acting more. Acting has been my main thing, but I was not really working that much when I was like 14 and 15, when I was doing my YouTube and singing and stuff. I was kind of waiting for the ball to start rolling for acting.

How do you make your heat breath look real on the show?

Basically we do the motions. So we do that and then they take it and post it and after we shoot it the editors kind of mess around with it on their computers. On the day when we shoot it we have to shoot it a couple different ways. If Kira and I are in a scene and you freeze one another, say like I freeze Kira, we’ll do it once. I’ll make the motion and she’ll freeze and then we’ll do it again with Kira not even in the shot. They’ll just do it with me. Like I’ll be looking in thin air as if she’s there. They’ll do it again without me and with Kira and she’ll say her lines without me. Basically they do all the possible ways so they can put it together after and use different shots.

What are your hobbies when you’re not acting or singing?

Well I lived in Florida, so I was kind of a lake kid. My friends and I used to go to the lake all the time. I like to play basketball with my friends.

Did you choose your super power?

No. It was chosen for me. The powers were already written in the script before I was even attached to the project.

What makes acting fun?

You have to love it. You have to have a knack for it, an idea of how to do it, why you like doing it. For me, being yourself is the best thing you can do and I tell you guys that and you don’t really understand what that is. Being yourself is easier said than done. I like kind of getting a break from that. I like to take different parts from different people and create something else, create a character.

Before “The Thundermans” was produced, did you know about any of the other characters on the show?

I went to school with Kira [Kosarin] and I had known that she booked the pilot. Basically a pilot is just a single episode of a show before it becomes a show. I knew she was doing that. I knew what “The Thundermans” was about because I wasn’t in the original pilot of the show. I knew all of [the characters] so going into the show they were already kind of like a unit. They were already on the show, so I kind of had to go in head first and get to know everyone kind of quickly.

Do you ever play Minecraft?

I was never actually a Minecraft player. A lot of my friends know the game.

Are you always surrounded by the media and fans?

No, not always. It hasn’t really gotten to a place that it takes over my life. But there are times when it gets to be a lot. But it’s not something that’s too much right now that I would be willing to I wish I was never an actor. It’s definitely not like that.

On the show, does the talking pet freak you out?

If there was a real talking rabbit, that is pretty creepy, but it’s also pretty cool. Imagine if you had a pet that talked. It depends on what he says, I guess, whether it’s creepy or not.

When you were very young did you ever think you would become what you are today?

I definitely pictured myself doing something creative, whether it would be singing or acting. I wanted to perform. I always kind of thought that was my task.


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