Mauricio Lara stars and heals in the Netflix hit The Healing Powers of Dude. This young star has advice ... and helps dreams come true.
The Netflix Star opens up about tackling life’s biggest challenges (on and off camera).
I love making people laugh and entertaining people. Because when I see joy on people’s faces, it brings joy to me. And I think acting was the best way to pursue that.
Starring as one of the leads in Netflix’s most popular feel-super-good (binge-worthy) family comedy series, The Healing Powers of Dude, teenage actor Mauricio Lara took a break to chat with one of CATALINA’s youngest journalists for some real talk. Mauricio plays the role of the comforting, best friend in the groundbreaking Netflix series that tackles social anxiety disorder and other teen issues. Mauricio is a must-see, must-know, next generation kind of Latinx actor, who is one of the most inspirational souls we’ve come across. Mauricio’s story — on and off screen — will inspire and make you happy!
Cristina Areu: What is the show The Healing Powers of Dude about?
Mauricio Lara: The Healing Powers of Dude is about an eleven-year-old boy, named Noah, who has social anxiety disorder. And he’s been home-schooled for the past two years, and now he’s finally ready to go back to school, for middle school, and his parents decide to get him an emotional support dog, Dude, to help him get through middle school with ... calmness ... so to say. And at the school, Noah meets me, Simon; Amara, played by Sophie Kim; and we kind of become best friends. We, along with Dude, help him out. We help him navigate the maze that is middle school. The show is about family, friends, and all the stuff in between.
CA: Are you in middle school?
ML: I am in middle school! I’m in eighth grade currently.
CA: Do you do middle school and acting? Like, do you juggle them both?
ML: Yeah, I go to a school where it’s very OK with actors having to leave if they have to film or if they have to audition or do interviews. It’s very amazing because they give all of us an opportunity to do what we want to do and pursue our careers, ... So I think that’s the special part of my school, but obviously with a lot of other actors, you know, they go to regular schools — public schools — and you know it’s difficult to juggle school and acting. You know, because you have to do homework, tests, and then you have to go act on top of it. It gets a little hard at first, but once you do it for a while, you get the hang of it.
CA: Are you tired sometimes? Do you ever feel like falling asleep on the set?
ML: Oh my god! Thankfully I’ve never fallen asleep on set, but yeah, I’ve been tired on set a few times on set. But not on The Healing Powers of Dude. As soon as I saw Dude, I was wide awake. Playing with the little puppies ... it was the best alarm clock — best morning wakeup. So I was never really tired for a moment on Healing Powers.
CA: Can you tell us a little bit about the show from your/Simon’s point of view?
ML: I think from Simon, or Turbo’s, point of view, it’s like he’s trying to help his friend, but he doesn’t know how to. At least at the beginning because he’s such an outgoing person and Noah is such a … non-outgoing person — a non-sociable person. And trying to find that balance between still being himself but also accommodating to Noah’s needs and what Simon needs to do as a friend. And at least that’s what you see in the first episode. But toward the end of the episode, he really just becomes more mellowed out and learns how to accommodate Noah’s needs.
CA: Is the show meant to help people with social anxiety?
ML: I’d like to think so. I think it’s there to add to the conversation. It’s to show that not everybody’s the same. We all go through our struggles — some more than others — but it also shows that having the right support system around you can really help you. With the friends that you have and the family that you have, it could really make or break your journey. And I really hope that this show shows perfectly that if you have the best support system around you, then your journey is going to be amazing!
CA: Is it a serious show?
ML: It’s a dramety. It has parts where it’s serious, it has parts where it’s very camedic; but from all sides, it’s serious things. It was a lot of fun to see Jace tap into those moments when he needed to be really serious, and it was really emotional too because I know that some people go through this. It’s insane and amazing to have both sides of drama and comedy all in one show — especially a kid’s show.
CA: Do you ever get nervous on the show? Do you ever get social anxiety?
ML: I wouldn’t say I have social anxiety, but yeah. The first few weeks or so, I kind of had a little bit of stage fright because I was kind of adapting to a new role and adapting to a new environment. Most of these people I’ve never met in my life, and trying to have that relationship with them on screen and off screen was interesting on and off the set.
CA: Do you have your own trailer? And a green room that’s not green?
ML: Yeah I did have my own trailer, most of us had trailers. We had a green room in all of our locations and sometimes it would change. Sometimes it would change in the middle of the day. We would be done filming a scene, we would come back to where we thought our green room was, but it moved to a new location! It was kind of like a little scavenger hunt as to where our trailers were.
CA: Anything else you wanna add before we
ML: Yes, one more thing. Watch The Healing Powers of Dude on Netflix!
We all go through our struggles — some more than others ...