Nickelodeon’s All That has recently been nominated for Favorite Kids TV Show for the Kids Choice Awards 2020 and extended for 10 more episodes. Lex Lumpkin, star of All That, is a multi-talented actor, writer and pianist. Lex can be seen doing several impressions of some of his favorite stars on the show. Nick Cannon, Jay-Z, Michael Strahan, President Barack Obama and Denzel Washington are just a few of his characters showcased on All That. Most notably, Lex Lumpkin’s parity of Travis Scott was recently viewed more than 1.5 million times on YouTube. YEM spoke with Lex Lumpkin about his rise to stardom and his journey to being on this iconic show.
Young Entertainment Magazine: At what age did you decide you wanted to be an actor? How did you get your start?
Lex Lumpkin: I was five years old when I asked my parents if they would put me in a movie or a commercial. I don’t think my parents took me seriously at first. I had to wear them down for years before my dad finally signed me up for a four week summer acting camp at the Indiana Repertory Theatre. Shortly after IRT’s summer camp I was invited to audition for the role of Stuart Little in their production of Stuart Little. I got the part and my start into the world of acting.
YEM: Executive Producers Kenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell were original cast members of All That from the 90’s. What is it like working with them?
Lex: It is an honor to work with them. They are super supportive, super funny and extremely talented. We get work with Kel Mitchell quite a bit and he is an awesome role model. If we have questions or even want to learn how to do something he will take the time to teach us.
YEM: You have played many characters on All That. Which character have you enjoyed emulating the most? Which character was the most difficult to impersonate and why?
Lex: It’s hard to select just one because there’s always that nuance of the person that just makes it funny and they are all so different. The most recent character would be Denzel Washington. It’s a spin on his Training Day character. I actually wrote a stand up joke about Training Day’s Denzel Washington as a Kindergarden teacher and I think one of the shows writers liked it and started writing a series of hilarious sketches from there.
YEM: What was your All That audition process like and what do you remember the most about it.
Lex: I totally bombed with one of my audition impressions. I think it might have been my third call back and casting ask me to come up with my own spin on a new script and gave me no direction or notes. They were looking to see what I could do with the character. I can laugh about it now but a year ago it was not so funny. Lets just say that my version of an over the top southern baptist preacher was not the best choice. I worked on it with my dad and we thought it was hilarious, casting, not so much. I gave it all I had during that audition and when I finished all I got back were blank stares from the casting directors.
Fortunately for me I had one person in the room that had a similar sense of humor (Jermain Fowler). I learned a valuable lesson that day. Don’t be afraid to take chances. They may not have liked my bold choice of a character it at least showed them that I was capable of taking big chances and bouncing back when it didn’t go as planned.
YEM: Football icon Peyton Manning, appeared on All That. What was it like working with Peyton?
Lex: Working with Peyton Manning was a dream come true. I’m from Indiana and of course I’m a Colts fan. I grew up cheering for the Indianapolis Colts. I used to have all sorts of Colts football figurines and a life size poster of Peyton Manning hanging in my room in Indiana. So imagine how excited I was when I found out that I was going to be in a skit with Peyton.
Many wouldn’t know this but I’d actually met Peyton two years prior when I appeared in a series of AT&T commercials with him. He introduced himself at the time, as if I didn’t know who he was (lol). Two years later he‘s on the All That show and in the Jay-Z Penny skit at that! I was super excited! I was worried that he wouldn’t remember me. But when he walked on set he said, “Hey Lex, nice to see you again.” I can’t tell you how awesome that was to get to work with one of my idols twice and have him remember me.
YEM: What would be your dream role to play in the future?
Lex: Miles Morales! Spider Man is one of my favorite superheroes and I loved to dress up and pretend I was spiderman as a kid. Then when I discovered Miles Morales I was so excited to see such an iconic franchise like Spider Man with a leading character that looked like me. At that point I was hooked. So Marvel if you are listening, if you ever decide to do a live action version of the character I’m ready.
YEM: What advice would you give young people interested in acting? Sketch comedy?
Lex: Don’t ever give up on your dreams. Only you can cultivate it and protect it. I know my parents love me but I don’t think they would have enrolled me in acting classes if I had not been persistent with them. Which brings me to my second piece of advice, take classes. Acting is tough field and it requires a lot of hard work. You will have to take the necessary steps to be prepared and practiced. Finally make sure you are having fun along the way. Ask yourself if you love it. When you are having fun everything else seems to fall into place.
YEM: When you are not on set or in school, what are some of your hobbies or other interests?
Lex: I am a big fan of football and basketball and have played both sports most of my life. I’m also taking a taekwondo class to learn the martial arts. I like to write and compose music and I play the piano. I started playing when I was three or four years old. Also I enjoy dancing and a really good storyline to just about all genres of movie.