Brendan Meyer: Whiz-Kid Teen Teaches Disney XD Viewers Across US
Brendan Meyer plays 14 year-old science teacher, Adam Young, in the internationally-acclaimed Disney XD series Mr. Young.
What would it be like to be 14 years old and be a science teacher at your high school? What would it be like to be your best friend’s teacher?
That’s part of the premise behind Mr.Young, the Disney XD series that’s quickly making international headlines, as revealed by Canada Newswire, and taking 17 year-old actor Brendan Meyer along for the ride of a lifetime.
Meyer Makes It Look So Easy
I recently spoke with Meyer about his new series. Of course, one of the first questions I asked him was about being an actor on such a popular television show so young in life. I wondered what experiences he could possibly draw from that might help him in the situation in which he now finds himself.
Meyer didn’t hesitate. “You know, acting is tough. It is something that requires a lot of mental energy, and a lot of understanding of not being too big or too broad, so I think I am just drawing on all my past experiences, because when you first start out, it is very difficult. You are constantly getting more comfortable. Whenever you go into anything, you have to draw on your own experiences and the techniques and work ethics you have learned in the past…before Mr. Young I did a series regular role on the show Dinosapien on Discovery Kids, and I wasn’t the lead on it, but I had a part in every episode, so I think I do draw from my experiences on that show. And then I had experience working on a TV show and keeping up the pace over the course of 16 or 20 episodes, or however many episodes we were working on.”
An average day for Meyer is 11 hours, sometimes more. And, now that he is 17, he told me he is legally cleared to work as long as he is needed on the set.
Meyer Takes on a Tough Assignment
I asked about the challenges of such a long day’s work and whether Meyer can relate to his character. In the series, he’s a 14 year-old teacher doing an adult job, but still dealing with kid problems. “It’s a lot like being an actor, doing an adult job on a TV show, yet still being a kid, with kid issues, doing the best you can at an adult job and being on a TV show full time. It is a full-time job.”
Comedy vs. Drama As an Art Form
“What about comedy?” I asked. I wanted to know what challenges he faced doing comedy as an art form.
“For me, the most challenging aspect is doing a multi-camera sitcom. Sitcoms have their own distinct rhythm, and they have their own rules. It’s a very different thing, you know. Comedy and drama are two very different things. Drama, you’ve gotta come in and you kind of have to be small and real. Comedy, you still have to be truthful and honest, but there’s all these different rules that you have to play by, and that’s been the most challenging for me, is just hooking up on rules and understanding the lingo and really just getting to the point where I understand, you know, what all the different, what is involved in being a success in a sitcom.”
He went on, “I’ve done a lot of comedy before, different comedy movies, a small bit of sitcom, but never really done full-on comedy for a long period of time. Even sitcom comedy is different than various other types of comedy…I am just loving learning it all”
The Role That Almost Wasn’t
The lead role in Mr. Young almost slipped away from Meyer. At the time of auditions for the role, he was locked into a contract, filming another project. Mr. Young was coming down to final auditions. Says Meyer, “I wound up coming in at the last minute. I did like an audition and, a week later, I had gone to a screen test. It worked out, and I’m really happy that it did.”
Apparently, so are Mr. Young’s viewers.
Meyer’s Work Keeps Coming
Meyer can also be seen in Walt Disney Home Entertainment’s Spooky Buddies, where he has “a nice little cameo” and Twentieth Century Fox’s This Means War, where he “has a scene with Reese Witherspoon and Chris Pine that’s really, really cool.”
Mr. Young airs on YTV in Canada and in the U.S. on Disney XD.
Cheryl has been a freelance TV/film writer for more than 10 years. Simultaneously, she has worked in PR for Bon Jovi Productions in NYC, PolyGram Records (also in NYC), and Rogers & Cowan Public Relations. Cheryl has published articles at suite101.com, “Sci-Fi Entertainment” magazine, and “Soap Opera Weekly.” She was also a credited researcher for English author Denis Meikle’s JOHNNY DEPP: A KIND OF ILLUSION. Cheryl enjoys writing for the entertainment industry and meeting new people. She is also an animal lover.
Article originally posted at Suite101.