Celebrity Jabber’s Christina Giuseppe was all giddy with excitement this week when she sat down with actor Ryan Francis for an exclusive interview!
Francis, who still doesn’t look a day over twenty-something, is probably best known to film fans for playing the role of young Peter Pan to Robin Williams’ grown version in Steven Spielberg’s Hook– a huge hit and still a cult favorite among movie audiences the world round.
But movie, TV and celeb buffs everywhere might be interested to know Francis got his start in 1987! As a child actor, he appeared on such hit shows like the much beloved Wonder Years and Blossom before finally catching his big break in 1991 playing Peter Pan in Spielberg’s Hook.
Being a young actor was quite a memorable experience for the young star.
“It was very exciting, he’s obviously an amazing director and producer,” gushed Francis regarding working with the legendary director, Steven Spielberg. It was such a great cast and to work with other talented actors such as, Robin Williams and Dustin Hoffman was an amazing experience.
Francis even dished to us about how some of those epic Never-Never Land sequences were shot!
“Literally, the ship you see in the movie was floating in a soundstage they built, as well as Never-Never Land. It was all right there!”
Getting such a young start in the biz, Francis wasn’t so much inspired directly into his craft by specific actors, rather he was just dying to be part of such an exciting industry. Though he did admit to eventually being influenced by an unlikely star…
“The first actor I really liked a lot and that touched me was Sidney Poitier! I felt really moved by his performances,” Francis admitted. As far as career path influence goes, he picked one of the big screen’s current reigning kings. ”Johnny Depp’s got a pretty stellar career going. The freedom, the choices he’s made, getting to work with a really talented director who really gets him and shares the same vision. Pretty cool!”
Francis has been a working actor ever since the success of Hook, and has now moved on to entrepreneurship AND writing and directing! He made his foray into working behind the camera in 2010′s short film Open 24 Hours, which he wrote and directed.
That whole experience provided some valuable insight for Francis on the challenges of being a filmmaker.
“It’s a lot more stressful,” Francis said. ”The acting job is pretty easy compared to what everyone else has to do. I was doing hair and make up, designing sets, props, everything!”