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PopWrapped | Television

Xolo Maridueña Talks 'Parenthood' And Life As A Rising Star

Kelly Sinkavitch | PopWrapped Author

Kelly Sinkavitch

Updated 03/11/2015 11:05pm
This Thursday marks the series finale of Parenthood, which debuted in 2010 to critical acclaim, and soon became the “must watch” show for NBC. It tackled many issues that families dealt with, and not only that, it did it well. I was given the chance to interview Xolo Maridueña, who plays Victor Graham, the adopted son of Julia Braverman-Graham (Erika Christensen) and Joel Graham (Sam Jaeger). Xolo is already considered a rising star in the child actor community and was recently nominated for an Imagen Award in the “Best Young Actor/Television” category. In addition, he has had much recognition in the Latino community (he is of Mexican, Cuban, and Ecuadorian descent), such as his acknowledgment for “Channeling Latino Talent” during the 2013 ALMA Awards. Xolo took some time out of being a 13-year-old rock star to tell me about his experience on the show and what’s next for his future.

Kelly Sinkavitch:

Where did you get your start in acting?

Xolo Maridueña:

Other than a Sears commercial, I pretty much started acting with Parenthood. It was the first TV audition I ever did!

KS:

What do you like most about acting? Do you ever get nervous?

XM

I didn’t really get nervous acting while on Parenthood because that’s my family. But I think when I get out there a bit more I may experience that feeling, we will see. The best thing about acting is the food…and the best food ever was on set of Parenthood. Parenthood

KS

: I see you’re in school! What is your favorite subject? What’s your least favorite?

XM

: My favorite subject is Algebra, and my least…hmm…it is a toss up between History and Spanish, not because I don’t like the subjects, but those are the hardest to catch up on when I am out of class filming for days.

KS

: How do you balance school with your career?

XM

: I’m not a straight “A” student, but I keep a steady 3.5-3.7 GPA, so I think so far I am doing pretty good. Our on-set teacher Miss Pam cracks the whip, there’s no messing around when we have to finish our homework.

KS

Parenthood has become one of my family’s all-time favorite TV shows. What was your audition for the show like?

XM

I didn’t know what to expect, I had never done an audition before. When I got the script there were some curse words in there and I refused to say them. I told my mom that, and she thought that they probably weren’t going to call me back, but they did, so I guess I did okay.

KS

What was the BEST part of working on the set?

XM

There were so many BEST parts working on set. I love my TV family and I will miss them so much. As a young person, I can tell you that filming on the backlot of Universal Studios was amazing. Tyree (Jabbar Trussell), Savannah (Sydney Graham), and I would sneak around sets and go up to Whoville between takes. They had never explored much of the backlot before I got there, so I guess I have a little bit of “Victor” in me, a troublemaker. Parenthood

KS

: What has been your favorite episode to film so far?

XM

: The episode where I get to drive the car with Grandpa Zeek was so much fun. I got to really work with Craig T. Nelson that episode. He is just the coolest, he’s Mr. Incredible, how can he not be? Of course, I almost crashed the car when I pushed on the gas too hard…but that’s just a bit of what makes it one of my favorite episodes.

KS

Your character Victor has been through a lot on the show. What have you learned the most while playing him?

XM

: Victor is a fighter, I think that’s great about him. You can put Victor in the middle of the world, with no map, and he is going to find his way back. The character was really well written. I can’t thank the writers enough for not just making him a one-dimensional person. Victor taught me that it isn’t about the falling, it’s about the getting back up.

KS

: Can you give us any hints towards what we can expect from the series finale?

XM

: I can tell you that the only part I will like about the series finale is I don’t have to avoid that question anymore!

KS

: What can we expect from you in the near future? Whatever it is, sky’s definitely the limit for you!

XM

: I want to really explore roles outside of the box, especially if they are based on Science-Fiction/Comics (Nova and Michael Vey). I would really like to play a funny role to get my comedy chops up. In the pretty near future, I start high school next year.

Catch Xolo Maridueña on the final episode of Parenthood this Thursday, Jan. 29, at 10pm EST on NBC. Be sure to follow Xolo on Twitter @Xolo_Mariduena so you can keep up with this rising star!

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