TEEN BEAT FEBRUARY 1993

 

CAMP OUT WITH JERRY O'CONNELL

"Camp Wilder is not your basic sitcom," says Jerry O'Connell. And he's right! Camp Wilder is all about a family and its interaction with neighbors, but there aren't any parents in this hilarious sitcom. "It's basically like a teenage utopia," says Jerry. You can bet that when you have a house full of kids who "camp out" and behave like, well, kids, there's bound to be trouble! If you think Jerry looks kind of familiar as Brody Wilder, that's probably because you recognize his adorable mug from the flick Stand By Me and the syndicated series My Secret Identity. When he's not acting, Jerry lives in New York with his brother and parents. Both he and his brother, Charlie, are attending New York University, where Jerry is studying film. Read on and find out what it would be like to "Camp out" with this sweet guy who loves the outdoors, fencing and surfing!


TEEN BEAT: What's it like working on the set of Camp Wilder?

Jerry O'Connell: Jay Mohr is really funny. He's a standup comic. So, he's got a line for everything. He's my best friend in the show and out in L.A., he's pretty much my best friend. It's a fun cast. There's never a dull moment.

TEEN BEAT: Do you prefer working on a TV series or in film?

Jerry: They both have their amenities. I like working on this show because it offers some things that working on a movie set doesn't offer. So they both have their pros.

TEEN BEAT: Do you live in New York City?

Jerry: Yes. I live at home in New York. It's homebase. I'm just out in L.A. temporarily.

TEEN BEAT: When did you know that you wanted to be an actor?

Jerry: I was always a pretty outgoing child. I was always putting on shows at home during Thanksgiving or Christmas. In school and in summer camp, I was always in plays. It's just something I've always been doing.

TEEN BEAT: What was your first acting job?

Jerry: I did a Duncan Hines chocolate chip cookie commercial saying, "Crispy-chewy-crispy-chewy" in the early '80s.

TEEN BEAT: Who haven't you met that you want to meet?

Jerry: David Mamet. [A writer whose work includes the Broadway play Speed The Plough, which starred Madonna.]

TEEN BEAT: You and your brother are both on the fencing team at NYU. What do you like about fencing?

Jerry: I don't know. It's just something I've done for a long time. My brother and I really got involved with it early in life and it got us into college. We've always liked watching those old Errol Flynn movies and just wanted to do it. He's really good. My brother is, like, Olympic level. He was in the Junior Olympics three years in a row.

TEEN BEAT: What kind of music do yo listen to?

Jerry: Everything from blues like Ray Charles to rap to classical. I like Black Sheep.

TEEN BEAT: What's your greatest strength?

Jerry: My family.

TEEN BEAT: What about your greatest weakness?

Jerry: Food. Desserts.

TEEN BEAT: Where do you see yourself in five years?

Jerry: I guess working in the industry, with a college diploma.

TEEN BEAT: Which actors do you admire?

Jerry: Tom Hanks and Jerry Seinfeld.

TEEN BEAT: Which movie have you seen recently and liked?

Jerry: I saw Honeymoon In Vegas. That was pretty good.

TEEN BEAT: Do you have a girlfriend?

Jerry: No, I don't.

TEEN BEAT: What's your idea of the perfect date?

Jerry: A Yankee game.

TEEN BEAT: If you could travel through time, what era would you visit?

Jerry: The '40s. It seems like a fun time - cool cars and zoot suits.

TEEN BEAT: Share a secret about yourself.

Jerry: I sing in the car - very loudly - to what ever's on the radio.

 

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