At only thirteen years old, actor Cole Allen stars on Showtime’s Golden Globe-nominated comedy-drama, Kidding, starring alongside Jim Carrey. The series follows iconic children’s television host Mr. Pickles (Carrey), as he works to get through a major family crisis and heartbreak. Cole shines as Will and Phil Pickles, twin boys of Mr. Pickles, one of which (Phil) passed away in a tragic car crash. Cole’s work on the show earned him a spot on TV Guide’s “Freshman 15” list of the top 15 breakout stars of fall TV. Season two of Kidding is set to premiere this Sunday! YEM spoke to Cole ahead of the premiere to see what’s ahead for the show’s new season.
Young Entertainment Mag: How did you first get started in acting?
Cole Allen: My sister Amalia started acting when she was little and I would tag along to many of her auditions. One time the casting director asked me if I wanted to audition too–I was nervous at first but soon learned I loved to act.
YEM: You star in the Showtime series Kidding alongside Jim Carrey. What is it like to work with an icon like Jim?
Cole: Jim is just as funny and talented in real life as he is on the screen. And he is incredibly kind. I’ve learned so much from working with him, like how to reset in a scene if I want to try it a different way and how to express emotion through movement and mannerisms.
YEM: The show has elements of both comedy and drama. Do you prefer one over the other?
Cole: I prefer watching comedy over drama because I love to laugh, but when it comes to performing I like dramatic roles because I find them easier to do.
YEM: You play twins, Will and Phil Pickles. What is it like to play two characters at once?
Cole: Playing two characters isn’t that different from playing one character. Each role is a different person so they have different thoughts and feelings; I just have to focus on which of the characters I’m playing in a specific scene and go from there.
YEM: The character Phil was tragically killed at a young age. Was it difficult to film that scene in the first season?
Cole: I didn’t find it too difficult to film but it was a little complicated. I had a photo double sit next to me in the backseat of the car and we would change outfits and swap seats as they filmed so I could act both roles. When I saw the scene for the first time, I thought it looked really cool but was definitely sad to watch what happened to Phil.
YEM: In the series, Will struggles with the loss of his twin and a difficult relationship with his father. How do you get into character when playing someone who is struggling with a dark past?
Cole: I read the scenes through and put the emotions behind the lines the way I think the character would feel in the moment. With Will he was a really good, nice kid before the accident, but after his twin dies he starts to take on more of Phil’s bad behaviors–almost like a coping mechanism to try and keep a little bit of Phil alive.
YEM: Season 2 of Kidding is premiering soon. What can fans expect from the new season?
Cole: Season 2 of Kidding has a lot of amazing surprises. Really cool sets and locations and celebrity guest stars like Ariana Grande and Tyler the Creator. It also has a lot of action and you learn more about each character and their lives.
YEM: Has your character grown or changed compared to the previous season?
Cole: Yes–in the first season Will was struggling after Phil’s death and his parents’ break up. In the second season Will is starting to reconcile with the loss of his twin, and his focus shifts to his relationship with his dad.
YEM: Ariana Grande will guest star on the show this season! Did you get to meet her?
Cole: Unfortunately I did not get to meet Ariana Grande–yet!
YEM: Finally, what do you like to do when you are not filming?
Cole: I like to skateboard, play video games like Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order, and I love to read action adventure books.