Back in 2015, DAMAN chatted with Robbie Amell and since then, he’s added plenty of notches to his belt, including as a producer.
Robbie Amell started modeling and acting when he was six years old. He later fell in love with acting, which prompted him to delve further into the art at the Canadian Studios Acting Academy. But even before enrolling himself into the academy, Amell already made his silver screen debut as Daniel Murtaugh, one of the kids in “Cheaper by the Dozen 2.”
Throughout his career, the Toronto-native is best known as the heartthrob of various teen movies through roles in Nickelodeon’s “True Jackson, VP” and CW’s “The Tomorrow People.” He also landed a recurring role in DC’s “The Flash” and appeared in “How I Met Your Mother,” “Revenge,” “CSI: NY,” “Hawaii Five-O,” “Modern Family,” and “The X Files.” On the big screen, you may have also seen Robbie as the football jock on “The DUFF.” And recently, he played as the boyfriend of the lead character who turns out to be in a satanic cult in Netflix’s “The Babysitter.”
Beyond acting, however, Robbie has also ventured into the role of producer. In 2016, he produced and also acted in the short sci-fi movie “Code 8.” If that title sounds familiar, that’s because it was adapted into a feature-length movie a year later.
DA MAN: Last time we featured you on DAMAN was all the way back in 2015. What are some of the highlights of your career between then and now?
Robbie Amell: Oh, man; it’s been a while. I’ve had a lot of fun with the people I’ve worked with and been very lucky with the projects I’ve been a part of. A couple of highlights would be working with Adam Devine and King Bach on Netflix’ “When We First Met.” Bach and I have worked together three times now on that and both Netflix’s “The Babysitter” movies. “Code 8” was a big part of the last few years for me. Seeing a project from short film to feature film with some of my closest friends and family was unbelievable. My new show “Upload” for Amazon will be premiering soon as well. That’s with Greg Daniels, who created “The Office” and “Parks and Recreation.” He’s a genius and it was incredible to get to work with and learn from him.
DA: Speaking of which, can you tell us how “Code 8” eventually became a feature film?
RA: It was a big swing for myself, Jeff Chan—the director—and my cousin Stephen Amell. We decided to shoot a short film and see if we could use it to launch an Indiegogo campaign. Luckily, people liked it and we raised over 2.4 million dollars. We used that to shoot a feature film. We just released in December and became the top movie on iTunes when we premiered. It was an incredible journey from start to finish with some amazing people. We’re looking forward to keeping it going.
DA: We also heard about an untitled spinoff of “Code 8.” Is there anything that you can tell us about this project?
RA: We are in preproduction on “Code 8” for Quibi, a new streaming platform coming out in April. I can’t tell you much about it, but it will pick up a few years after the movie ends.
DA: What was the biggest challenge of producing a movie?
RA: Everything. It’s a huge ordeal. But we had amazing people who really cared about what we were making. It never felt like work. But it wasn’t easy.
DA: You have so many upcoming projects that’s soon to be released. One of them is “Upload” which you mentioned earlier and looks like a very cool sci-fi series. Can you tell us about Nathan, the character you’ll be playing?
RA: “Upload” takes place in a world where if you know you’re going to die, you can upload your consciousness to a digital heaven. But heaven is run by different corporations. My character Nathan is a coder whose self-driving car crashes and he gets uploaded to his girlfriend’s account. She now essentially owns him in the afterlife. The show is so weird and out there yet feels like it could happen any day now.
DA: And we also heard you’re set to appear in the sequel for “The Babysitter 2.” Considering your character’s fate from the previous movie, what can you tell us about the sequel?
RA: I just wrapped some additional shooting on “The Babysitter 2.” I can’t tell you much, but it’s just as wild and fun as the first one—and I still don’t have a shirt.
DA: By the way, how do you think would you fare against a real-life attack from a satanic cult?
RA: Very well. I’ve spent my life playing video games, working out and I love to shoot guns. I feel like I’m ready.
DA: There’s also “The Hating Game.” Can you give us a brief intro to the film and your role in it?
RA: We are still hoping to shoot that later this year. It’s based on a book of the same name. I don’t want to spoil anything. but it’s a romcom where the two lead characters drive each other crazy.
DA: And then there’s also “Desperados” and “Eat Wheaties.” Do you think 2020 will be the year for you?
RA: That would be nice! [Laughs] I’ve been very lucky to get to keep working over the last couple of years. The projects just all seem to be coming out this year. I’m just excited to share them with the world.
DA: Last question: In the past, you starred in quite a few teen movies and TV series, most notably Nickelodeon’s “True Jackson, VP” and “The DUFF.” What do you miss most about playing in teen flicks like those two?
RA: I guess I just miss being that young. It was a fun time in my life and I loved working on those projects. But I’m a dad now and I’m at another stage in my life. I’m enjoying it more but it’s different. I’m excited for what’s ahead.
PHOTOGRAPHY Kit Tran
STYLING Michelle Wu
U.S.-BASED CREATIVE DIRECTOR Mitchell Nguyen McCormack
GROOMING Frank Bozonelos
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