Often times, the best way to prepare for success is by going through some struggle first. Actor Owen Joyner may be 17 and only at the start of his career, but he knows that feeling more than most. Joyner is acting in his second Nickelodeon show in four years, but in that time he’s learned how difficult the rigors of Hollywood are and how easily a few moments of prosperity can change quickly.
Joyner got his first Nickelodeon role in “100 Things to do Before High School” in one of his first ever auditions since moving from Oklahoma. But when the show did not get picked up for a second season, the young actor spent a few years and dozens of auditions looking for a role that fit. So as he prepares for his new show, Joyner carries with him plenty of perspective.
“This is super cliche, but it’s important to stay humble,” Joyner said. “Just understand everything you are given is a gift. There’s always someone out there who is better than you, that can act or look better than you, so it is never something completely deserved.”
This time, Joyner stars in “Knight Squad”, in which he plays one of the two lead roles. The show, about a group of young students attending a school for knights, was not originally on Joyner’s radar.
But once his acting coach insisted he read the script for the pilot, his feeling for the show quickly changed.
“I remember in the first draft of the pilot, there’s a scene where I’m driving in a cart with an ogre and I’m talking to three chickens,” Joyner said. “I don’t know why, but as soon as I read that I started cracking up and knew I had to audition.”
In the show, he plays a character named Arc who handles most of his situations with a quick wit and a flair for the mischievous. It’s a bit of a breakaway from the character Joyner played in “100 Things”, but he considers that a good thing and he hopes to break away from being typecast in one role.
“A lot of the times my look will put me in this ‘dumb jock’ type of role,” Joyner said. “In my first Nickelodeon show I played a kind of comedic relief character. He wasn’t overtly dumb or anything, but he was not the brightest guy either. So it is exciting to be in this quick wit, a little bit smarter type of role.”
When it comes to fashion or style, Joyner admits he’s not the biggest expert. He describes his everyday style as whatever he might find in his closet that’s clean and looks the best to him.
And if Joyner’s friends or colleagues have opinions on his unique attire, then so be it.
“I’ve had a pair of khaki shorts that my friends have been making fun of me for all the time, but I think they are perfectly fine,” Joyner said. “I’m not the type of person who spends money on clothes because I would rather spend money on a car, or some new camera equipment or something.”
Joyner has noticed plenty of differences since moving from Oklahoma, but one of the most distinct is the fashion. While both places care about how one looks, he said he’s more likely to see “Frathouse” type brands like Southern Marsh and Vineyard Vines back in his home state.
And while he finds nothing wrong with that look, Joyner prefers California, where he feels people dress in a more individual sense.
As “Knight Squad” continues through it’s first season, Joyner remains humble about the opportunities he presently has. But when looking toward the future, Joyner has big plans, and he sees another actor known for his quick wit as some guidance.
“The biggest role model for me is Steve Carell. That man is a genius when it comes to comedic timing and anything comedy, but then you flip him over to dramatic stuff and he is just as good,” Joyner said. “So I want to be an all-around actor, and I want to crush all the genres and I want a kid to look at me and say, ‘I want to be him when I grow up.’ That’s my goal.”
Nickelodeon Knight Squad: http://www.nick.com/knight-squad/