Family Channel has recently announced that its new show, A.N.T FARM, has been renewed for a second season! For those who have never seen it, the series follows the life of Chyna Parks (China Anne McClain), a gifted 11-year-old who gets bumped to high school early as part of the “Advanced Natural Talent” program. With her new friends, Olive Doyle (Sierra McCormick) and Fletcher Quimby (Jake Short), Chyna does her best to adjust to her new school while trying to steer clear of the school’s queen bee, Lexi Reed (Stefanie Scott).
The Mag got the chance to chat with the actor who plays Fletcher, Jake Short! Here’s what he had to say about getting into Fletcher’s head, his new puppy, pies in the face and more:
A.N.T FARM has been renewed for a second season, are you excited?
J: I’m super excited for that. I’m really thrilled! We’re going back on the 13th to start the second season and, honestly, my favourite part is just reading the script and getting to do the episodes. The writers do such a great job and I’m so happy to be on the show.
What do you love about playing Fletcher?
J: I just think he’s a quirky character who’s interesting to other people. In future scripts, when he’s scared by somebody, he has a different attitude that reveals something about his character and also his interactions with that person. They’re amazingly accurate characters for high school but I guess I wouldn’t know ‘cause I didn’t go to high school.
You were homeschooled?
J: Yeah, that’s right.
That’s interesting! What was your favourite moment that you got to do in season one?
J: In the Christmas episode, I actually got pied in the face, which was—[laughs]—awesome! It may sound pretty bad, but it was my first experience getting hit in the face with a pie and it was pretty fun!
Was it with actual pie, or did they do something fancy on set and just add whipped cream?
J: It was actually shaving cream and graham cracker crust.
Aw, so you couldn’t even lick it!
J: I did afterwards…it did not taste good.
Since your character, Fletcher, seems to be really different from you—he’s in school, he’s all about art—how do you get into that mentality to play him?
J: I don’t know; I guess Fletcher and I are similar in a lot of ways, in the ways [we] talk to and interact with people. Fletcher definitely overreacts more than I do; he’s definitely a little bit over the top. But I think Fletcher has a quirky personality that I can relate to and he’s always cracking up China and making flirtatious comments, really in all fun and play when you think about it. I just kind of line up my thoughts with Fletcher’s. I just kind of get into it—it’s pretty easy, it’s not like I’m a serial killer or anything, so I’ll be fine.
So how do you guys get along—you, China, Sierra—when you’re filming?
J: Oh, we get along great! Between takes we’ll play games. We’ll play rock, paper, scissors or thumb wars and different stuff like that. I always have a great time.
So what do you do in your spare time when you’re not acting?
J: Well, right now, I’m involved with a lot of school because on the set it’s been so busy that I’ve had no time for homework. But other than that, I play sports, I run around the track a lot…I stopped playing video games when I started 9th grade because I didn’t have enough time for them. I guess I’ll have to get back into that sometime, but mainly now I just kind of hang around the house, sometimes play catch with my sister and stuff like that.
What’s your personal favourite subject in school? It’s clearly art on the show, but…
J: I’m terrible at art, so I would say my favourite subject is probably science. But not this year, I hate biology.
Really, you don’t like art?
J: No, I have complete and total respect for art and people who create amazing drawings, but I have no talent in art at all. [Laughs]
Did you just get a puppy?
J: Yes, we do have a little dog. His name is Skipper and it’s his feeding time…[he’s] a long-haired Chihuahua slash something they didn’t know because someone brought him into the pound and they didn’t really look at him and we adopted him a few days later.
Are you a big pet lover?
J: I am! I love dogs, and I love cats. I’ve always been playing with them, I’ve always been upset that I never had one when so many of my friends did. So, now it’s cool.
Other than the pie in the face, are there any other fun moments you’ve had on set?
J: Well, sometimes on the set, there’s a ball pit upstairs which we go in… It was actually from a show, it was from the set of another show and they had to buy this ball pit and then they were like, “Where do we put this?” So, they put it in the office.
Thank you, Jake Short! Catch A.N.T FARM Friday nights at 7:30pm and Mondays at 8pm on Family Channel.