INTERVIEW: ‘Maturing Youth’s Joshua St. Leger On Being On A Film Set, His Dream Role, And Future Aspirations
Here at JUMPCUT we’ve been keeping a close eye on the success of RNF’s Maturing Youth since we were offered the opportunity to review it last year. Since our review went live we’ve been lucky enough to share the short’s many successes and also chat with the cast and crew. You can find all our interviews and the latest news about the film on this page.
Today we’re excited to share with you our interview with child actor, Joshua St. Leger, who absolutely steals the scenes he shares with the older actors. We wanted to chat with Joshua about his experience being on a film set, his dream role, and his future aspirations.
At the bottom of our interview, you’ll also find a short video of Joshua being interviewed on the red carpet of the film’s New York premiere which is well worth a watch!
Hi Joshua, thank you for taking the time to answer our questions. Would you like to introduce yourself to our readers…
Thank you for the questions and Hi! Jumpcut Readers! I’m Joshua Saint Leger, Brooklyn born, 18 October. I love swimming, running, karate, gymnastics, acrobatics, drawing, exercise, watching movies and cartoons, acting, practising scripts and learning monologues. I also love to learn new things. I understand German, Russian, French & Creole and of course, speak fluent English. Not quite the Queen’s English though, but I’m young and it is on my things to do list and I will get around to learning it as well.
What did you find most enjoyable about filming Maturing Youth?
Well, I got a chance to act on a real set and I have to say it was way more than what I expected and had a lot of fun filming the project, I can honestly say I really love acting. I also got to see what happens behind the scene which made me love acting even more. Mr Simon, the director, was the best with his direction and I just felt comfortable with his guidance where he had me just fall into my character. I also really liked sitting in the make-up chair and getting makeup on for the scene. On top of that, I really found the whole experience of filming and movie making way more than what you see on the screen. It’s a tamed beast! Great respect to actors, directors, producers and those in the filming trade and movie Industry.
What was it like walking onto the film set on day one?
Well, when I walked on the film set, I was a little bit nervous but when you’re nervous, I quickly learned to use that nervous energy to help me do my thing. See, when you’re nervous, if you know how to use it, it will make you better at doing your thing. So I just did it and rolled with the whole gang of moving parts and believe you me, I wanted to play my role and not fall out of step with everyone. They all knew their role and played it super well. When it all came down to it and the director said action… the whole machine just moved in sync, like a domino line falling on each other after a whole week of building and preparation. Just epic and I was a part of it. Fascinating to watch and an honor to be a part of it.
You seemed to have great chemistry with Sean Kaufman and Kim Paris – what was it like working with them both?
Working with them, it was so much fun…like doing a front flip fun. They were great leads for me to work with and I think they had just as much fun as I did. Although they had much more experience in acting then I did, they didn’t make me feel that way on or off the screen. I think we hit it off from day one rehearsal at R&F Studios and it carried over and got even better on shooting day on the set. I am just too lucky of a guy to have started my professional acting career with two super professional lead actors. I learned from watching both of them and being a part of the instructions and direction from Mr Simon. Class was in session and I was a student and it was life changing and I have the acting bug now because of it. I know I still have a lot to learn about it, but I am ready and willing and able to learn as much as the art is willing to teach and show me.
What did you like to do when you were taking a break on-set?
Well, what I liked to do was watch my tablet sometimes, but more times than others I wanted to act more with lesser breaks. I was so ready to get on set and make like a SpongeBob…soak up as much knowledge as I could from lights, camera, and action. I don’t think you really get where I was coming from. I thought about acting as I watched TV and movies at home when it was explained to me by my parents that the people on the screen are actors and the characters they are playing are not real. I didn’t think that could be possible, but I said to myself, my parents said it is so, then that’s what I would like to do. I wanted to act and like a dream come true, it came true! Now I ask you…Who do you know would want to “sleep” or “take a break” from a “Dream Come True?”
Are there any actors you’d really like to work with in the future?
WOW! So many great actors to choose from, I am not sure where to start…I would like to work with Sean and Kim again on another project if possible. Together or individually, they are great professionals with a lot to bring to the table. I’d like to work with Michael B. Jordan, Chadwick Bosman, Daniel Kaluuya, and the rest of the Black Panther cast. Dwayne Johnson is one I have my eye on and Kevin Hart. Jackie Chan, I love his movies, I would find it an honor and a great learning experience to be on set with him. My mom loves Friends and Jennifer Aniston reminds me so much of my mom…I would love to be on set with her. Julia Roberts is another skilled actress I would love to be on set with. Her and Melissa McCarthy. They are both incredible. Johnny Depp also incredible, I would adore to be on set with him. Samuel Jackson, I would love to be on set with him and the cast of the Avengers… any one of them, if not them all.
Do you have any more films in the pipeline that we should be looking out for?
I did do a PBS Kids Monkey music video for Thanksgiving that should air this November and I have a few projects I am working on but I can’t speak on any of them right now.
What’s your dream role?
I would have to say Flash or Spiderman. I say Flash because I like to run all the time. Matter of fact I run so much, I can say it gets me in trouble sort of like Flash, so Flash would be right up my alley. Come to think of it, I may even say that I like to run BECAUSE of watching Flash on the screen. In fact, I think I’m just as fast, if not faster.
Now, on the other hand, to play Spiderman would be the ultimate epic role for this young guy. I got a thing for the NY web-slinger. He’s from NY, I’m from NY, has a great sense of humor and an easy way about handling problems, sort of a lot like me. I am easy going, mellow kind of fellow, and face life with a smile that will stop you on a dime. Not a million dollars, but I’m working on it! Wouldn’t it be cool if they could combine the two…”Spider-Flash?” EPIC!
We like to end our interviews with the most important question of all – do you like pineapple on pizzas?
Well, I don’t like pineapple so no pineapple on my pizza, please. Great questions. Thank you for the interview. I look forward to doing this again in the future.
You can watch Joshua being interviewed on the red carpet at the film’s New York premiere from the film’s official Instagram account below:
View this post on Instagram
Be sure to check out our review for Maturing Youth in which I talk about Joshua’s performance (and even had a quote pulled by RNF!)
View this post on Instagram
Audiences can see Joshua St. Leger in Maturing Youth at the next screening of the film at the ‘Hang Onto Your Shorts’ Film Festival in Asbury Park, New Jersey on Sunday, May 5. The film is nominated for three top honor awards for Best Film, Best Actor (Sean A. Kaufman) and Best Actress (Kim Paris).
Tickets are available now at www.MaturingYouth.com