Gam me on
Cameron Boyc ce is ready to prove than he’s more than just a Disney Channel star.
CAMERON Boyce e kept referring to himself as a “reg gular kid” throughout our 15- minut te phone interview from Los Angele es, California. But how many regul lar 16- year- olds do you know is the e star of Disney Channel’s Desce endants, TV series Jessie, and voicee of Jake in the award- winning g Jake And The Never Land Pira ates kids show?
Boyce, who h has been acting since he was eig ght years old when he made his mov vie debut in Mirrors opposite Kiefer Sut therland, insisted that nothing has c changed. He cited maintaining a clo ose relationship with the same gr roup of friends he had even before e the TV stuff happened as the r eason he still feels like a normal, , everyday guy.
“My friend ds are very present in my life. I s still have friends from dance c class and school that I talk to on a regular basis. That’s my regula ar kid stuff. I always try to find the time for the things I love,” he said.
Audiences started payingp attention to Boyce as the mischev vious, wisecracking Luke Ross in Jessie. WhenW the Disney Channel series conclu uded last year, Boyce upgraded to a leadingl role in the new show Gamer’s Gu uide To Pretty Much Everything. He shared d that getting the lead role offer is a hu uge validation for him.
“It feel really good to know that my hard work is recognis sed and appreciated. I thought it was re eally cool that they want me to stick arou und for another series. I also looked forwardf to playing a leadership role. Jessie e was previously led by Debby Ryan ( whow played the titular character). I’ve le earned so much from her so it was go ood to be able to use that knowledge for th his new experience.”
In Gamer’s Guide T To Pretty Much Everything - Boyce pl lays Connor, a professional video gam mer who is forced to take a break due a nasty thumb injury. However, his sp ponsors started cutting ties with him, so Connor can’t continue to compete e, and has to go back to school and b e a student again. While there, he mee ts a group of friends ( played by M Murray Wyatt Rundus, Felix Aviti ia and Sophie Reynolds), with w whom he forms a team and start to practice for the World Gaming Pr ro Championship.
Boyce laughed when we asked if he is actually the grown- up version of Luke.
“There are some similarities! But Connor is a bit more mature while Luke is carefree and silly. Connor has a set of goals he wants to accomplish. He is dedicated to his craft as a professional gamer. I don’t know if Luke has any goals to accomplish apart from pranking people and causing mischief.”
In the show, there’s an aspect called the Gamer’s Vision where the characters imagine themselves as players in a video game to get through various everyday situations. It gets a little bit chaotic on the show because of the different quirky personalities.
“Connor’s job is to wrangle his teammates all together and get them to focus on one task. Which actually never happens because then the show will just be about people sitting around playing video games all day.”
Growing up, Boyce enjoyed watching other Disney Channel shows like That’s So Raven and Hannah Montana. He said it means a lot to now be a part of Disney.
“It’s an iconic thing. Disney talents are put on a different class. They have also provided a lot of opportunities for me. I’ve been working for five to six years now. It’s been a heck of a ride. I’m very grateful to them.”
When the opportunity came for Boyce to prove himself as a serious actor, he didn’t hesitate. Boyce recently caused a stir online when he posted a photo of himself covered in bruises and burnt marks, which turned out to be just makeup for a character he’s playing on medical drama Code Black.
But it was a dramatically different image for a young actor who has made a name for himself as a Disney Channel star. A few websites described the image as “disturbing”. But Boyce has no problems sharing that image.
“People generally put Disney stars in a different category. We’re not exactly actors or comedians. There is a stereotype. I just want people to know that I’m an actor first, along with other Disney kids who will be breaking stereotypes as well. I’m willing to do gory stuff along with comedy and drama.”
He explained that sharing the photo was about showing his fans that kids on Disney Channel have the potential for bigger things.
“We’re pushing ourselves. We should be showing our fans and audience that we are versatile. For me, sharing that photo was about telling my fans that I’m going to be on Code Black.
“I was so excited about it because people get to see a different side of me and realise that I’m serious about being a respectful actor.”
airs Thusdays at 9pm on Disney XD ( Astro Ch 617/ 637).
Boyce is determined to prove himself as a serious actor.
Avitia, Boyce, reynolds and rundus are the stars of show about a team of professional video game athletes. — Photos: Disney XD