Jake Short is Fletcher Quimby on A.N.T. Farm
By: Lynn Barker
We are on the cell with Jake talking the new season of A.N.T. Farm and what's up for him personally.
14-year-old cutie Jake Short’s character on Disney Channel’s “A.N.T. Farm” series is a talented artist always crushin’ on Chyna [played by China Anne McClain] , another super talented student who happens to excel in music. Jake tells us there will be more of that and some new female students for Fletcher to glom onto in the new season.
The cute and popular young actor tells us that, when he was a kid back home in Indiana, nobody liked him so he knows what it’s like to be a goofy reject. He grew out of it and if you feel “goofy” and out of place, you can too! Picture Jake kickin’ back at his grandma’s in L.A. where he lives when he’s working in Hollywood.
Kidzworld: Hi. Congrats on the show being picked up for another season. Are you shooting now or…?
- Jake: Right now we’re waiting to go back. On Feb. 13th we start shooting again. I’m really excited. I haven’t read any of the scripts yet.
Kidzworld: This new season will Fletcher still be crushin’ on Chyna?
- Jake: Oh definitely. I think he’ll still be crushin’ on her probably in a more intense way I guess.
Kidzworld: We see Fletcher’s artwork on the show so who actually created it? Are you personally artistic like that?
- Jake: Some of it is a guy they have do drawings and stuff but the guy who does props on the set Rob Z. is an amazing artist. He’s really talented. In one episode I was a superhero/hairstylist and he actually did all the artwork in that episode. I think the best drawing I’ve ever done was this amazing stick figure [he laughs].
Kidzworld: Okay, so you aren’t an artist, are you personally more musically talented than Fletcher?
Jake: Probably. I know China [Anne McClain]’s character plays all these instruments but I’m learning guitar. I used to take piano and now I’m doing a little bit of singing as well. I’m taking singing lessons so I can have that experience if a role ever comes up where I have to sing. My friends and I are always talking about starting a band. But, wherever the wind takes me.
Kidzworld: Do you think you’ll be a writer/director some day? Do you shoot videos and put them on YouTube?
- Jake: I do. I write a lot of things and want to direct a lot of things. Right now I have a few videos up on YouTube. I did some that take you and show you what I do in my daily life. One video was about what we do on set. It’s really fun. I like doing that. Stephanie on the set showed me how to edit and I’m getting better at it so now it looks great.
Kidzworld: What bands or artists are you into musically?
- Jake: I’m really into “Blink 182” and really like alternative rock. That’s sort of my thing. I’m always up for that. Recently I got a “Death Cab for Cutie” album. I love them.
Kidzworld: I’ve interviewed China and she seems nice. How do you like working with her?
- Jake: Yeah. We’re always playing games on the set like rock/paper/scissors and thumb wars and on a lunch break, we’ll eat lunch together and do Nerf wars and go visit other sets.
Kidzworld: Talk about how you first got into showbiz.
- Jake: I was nine or nine and a half and my brother started to act and was like “This is kinda fun” and I wanted to do everything my brother did so I was like “Okay, I’ll do this too”. I started and really liked it and my brother said “I don’t know if this is my thing”. He was more focused on cars and he wants to be an engineer someday I think. I was like “Well, I really like this. This is cool” so I decided I might as well try this. They had a little meeting where they chose kids to come out to California [Jake is from Indianapolis, Indiana] and I ended up getting picked so I came out here and started acting.
Kidzworld: What actor are you dying to work with?
Jake: I’d say Jeff Bridges. He’s a really good actor and I like his style. He’s still married and stays out of the bad parts of the tabloids. He’s never done anything bad. I’d love to work with him.
Kidzworld: Are you a sporty guy and, if so, do you wish they would let you do more physical stuff on the show?
- Jake: Yes. I love doing my own stunts on the show. Most of the time I actually do. Right now, I’m not playing on any teams but I love playing basketball and soccer and I like snowboarding and skiing. I learned all that stuff when I was a kid and Disney’s like “Got to make sure you’ll be safe” so I cut back.
Kidzworld: What’s your favorite sport?
- Jake: Probably soccer. I’ve always loved soccer but I guess I haven’t gotten to get much better because I’ve been doing so much school and going to set so much that I kind of dropped out but I was playing a lot of basketball with my friends too.
Kidzworld: Describe an average day for you when you aren’t working.
- Jake: If I’m not working and not doing school, I try to hang out with as many friends as I can. Most of the time I’m doing something every day of the week and doing school every waking minute. So, on the weekends when I get a break I’m like “Hey, guys. Want to hang out, go down to the park, go to a movie or the mall?” I do all kinds of things.
- Back home, when I lived in Indiana before I started acting nobody liked me.
Kidzworld: Really but you are cool!
Jake. Nope. Nobody. No kids liked me and I was having a rough time. There were just a couple of kids in my neighborhood I hung out with and when I came out here, I still had that “Is everyone going to hate me?” so I still had that goofy kid feeling the first couple of years I was out here but I got over that and now I have a couple of friends that I hang out with a lot.
Kidzworld: Cool. Do the showrunners on “A.N.T. Farm” let you contribute ideas for stories or for your character?
- Jake: We can’t give story ideas because there is a law that says you can’t just take [random] ideas from people because when the episode airs they can say “Hey! That was my idea” but sometimes we can suggest lines like “Wouldn’t it be better if I said that or did this instead of that?” and sometimes they’ll say “Yeah. That would work”. They do that every so often.
Kidzworld: What does the cast do between scenes.. go online, play video games or what?
- Jake: During the Spring we’re always in school [on set] Wah waaaa. But, I do enjoy school. I try hard to do well. I really like Science but not biology. But, we go do lunch together and get on our computers and use photo booths and take pictures and sometimes we go out and play basketball or we run around to other sets and go say “Hi! Wazzup guys? Gotta go now, Bye!” We shoot at Hollywood Center Studios.
Kidzworld: What is more fun for you as an actor; the TV show or doing a feature film like Shorts?
- Jake: I really like the TV show right now but, in the future, after the show I plan on doing maybe other network shows or sometimes movies. Movies, the main difference is one camera [his show is three] and shooting one scene over and over and I’d probably say a lot of movies are more realistic than Disney TV but they are pretty similar and I enjoy both of them.
Kidzworld: Is there a person in history or a character in a book that you would love to play someday?
- Jake: There is a book out right now called “The Lost Hero” by Rick Riordan. I’ve only read part of it but I’d like to play the son of Zeus. It’s a new book series. [note: this is by the same author as “Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief” which was made into a feature film].
Kidzworld: What are the changes in the show this new season and why will fans love it?
- Jake: All we know now is the tentative schedule but we shot 26 episodes last season which is more than usual and I’d say the last few episodes had some great ideas and great twists and there’s a lot of awkward interactions with Fletcher and various girls.