14-year-old Josh Hutcherson has kept himself busy with roles in Polar Express, Kicking & Screaming, Little Manhattan, Zathura, and RV. Now Josh is starring with AnnaSophia Robb in Bridge to Terabithia, the movie based on the beloved book by Katherine Patterson. But that's not all: He will soon be seen in Firehouse Dog, and in 2008, will be in the action adventure Journey 3-D with Brendan Fraser. With such a busy schedule it's a wonder he had time to sit down for an interview with Scholastic News Online. Read on to find out what Josh had to say about Bridge to Terabithia, his favorite childhood book, and much more!
Q & A
Tell us about your character Jesse, in Bridge to Terabithia.
Josh Hutcherson: Jesse is kind of a small town kid. His family's not very well-to-do. He's an artist. He likes to draw. He's somewhat of an outcast at school and kids tend to make fun of him. There's this big race at school coming up and he's been training all summer long so he can win it, but this girl comes in and she beats all of the boys. Jesse is embarrassed and has a little bit of a grudge against her. But throughout the journey of the movie, they become good friends and they create an imaginary world called Terabithia behind their houses.
If your character Jesse were a real person, would he be one of your friends?
Josh: I think he would because I'm an artist and he's an artist. He's athletic and I'm athletic. I enjoy running, and hanging out, playing sports, and stuff like that.
Why do you think kids will like Bridge to Terabithia?
Josh: I think kids will like it because there are a few different storylines in it that they can really relate to. Bridge to Terabithia is required reading in most schools, so they'll want to see how the book was made into the movie.
Do you remember your favorite childhood book?
Josh: Where the Wild Things Are. I think I liked it because my Dad used to read it to me when I was little, and I read it to my little brother when I finally learned how to read.
Do you have any really embarrassing moments?
Josh: Well, when I was in third grade, we had to do the musical, Grease, and dress up like we were in the 1950s and dance. It's funny because I was so opposed to that. I was really mad at my teacher for making me do it. I got up there and I refused to sing, so the only thing I did was mumble, "watermelon," because the teacher said if you don't want to do it, mumble "watermelon" and it looks like you're singing. No one noticed it except my Grandma. She came up to me afterwards and said, "Were you singing watermelon the whole time?" It was embarrassing because a couple of my friends were there.
Brad Pitt is one of your favorite actors. What appeals to you about him?
Josh: He's the kind of actor who doesn't choose his roles to be the ones in the biggest blockbuster films, but they end up being that way because he's in them. But the fact that he chooses roles based on whether they're challenging or not and trying to play different charactersthat's how I want to go about my career. That's why he's someone I want to work with and look up to.
Do you have an all-time favorite movie?
Josh: I like Pirates of the Caribbean a lot.
If you could invite three people to dinner, who would they be and what would you serve?
Josh: Abraham Lincoln, because I think I could learn a lot from him, because he's so smart. Probably someone from the future like some alien leader or some future President so I could learn about future technology. I don't know who the third one would be, but I would serve Subway. That's my absolute favorite food. I get the same thing every time I go there: honey nut bread with turkey, pepperoni, pepper jack cheese and lettuce.
What would you like your fans to know about you that they might not already know?
Josh: Contrary to what you see in the papers about child actors, that's not how we all are. It's not always negative. I'm a normal kid. Besides the fact that I film movies, I'm a normal kid who does normal kid things. That's probably the biggest thing that I want everybody to know. I still get grounded. I still have to do chores.
Interview by Marie Morreale
(Photo: Courtesy Weta Digital Ltd./Walden Media, LLC)
February 16, 2007
Bridge To Terabithia opens in theaters
April 4, 2007
Firehouse Dog opens in theaters
Name: Joshua Ryan Hutcherson
Birthday: October 12, 1992
Birthplace: Union, Kentucky
Eyes: hazel with a "bit of blue"
Sibling: younger brother, Connor
Pets: a boxer dog named Diesel, two cats named Jell-O and Paws
Gadgets: iPod and Sidekick
Actors: Brad Pitt, Jake Gyllenhaal, Jennifer Garner, Dakota Fanning
Football Team: Cincinnati Bengals
Fast Food: Subway