At The Odd Life of Timothy Green press junket, I was fortunate enough to get a chance to conduct a one-on-one interview with the film’s titular star, the very talented and awesome CJ Adams. Below, you will find the transcription of this interview, and let me tell you, it was an absolute joy to interview CJ Adams. He already behaves like an experienced interviewee, but is still a lovable kid at heart who answers each question with total honesty. He even colors his responses with wit and humor. Just like in the movie, it’s hard not to find CJ Adams the coolest, most amazing kid you’re ever likely to meet. He’s got a great career ahead of him if he continues his path of acting. Check out what “Timothy Green” himself has to say to The Awards Circuit:
Awardscircuit.com: Thank you for joining us today, CJ! I first just wanted to ask if you could briefly tell us the story of how you got involved in the project of The Odd Life of Timothy Green.
CJ Adams: Well, it all started from Dan in Real Life because Peter Hedges, the director of my movie, [directed] Dan in Real Life, and that was my first movie. I got in that because they were just doing a screen trial. [My parents and I] thought it was as an extra, but we found out it was as a cast member. Then I tried out for this movie…because I knew the director — and I wasn’t in the [movie] business then and I got the part for [Dan in Real Life]. That’s really how I got into the whole business of movies, and now with The Odd Life of Timothy Green.
Awardscircuit.com: Very cool! I’ve got to say, your instincts as an actor are spot on. Does that come naturally to you or do you really have to work at it? You played really well toward the camera, and your reactions to what the actors were saying seemed so natural and effortless to me.
CJ Adams: Well, what really made me act so well was because Jennifer [Garner] and Joel [Edgerton]…they would go with the flow, and that made me feel so comfortable whenever I was acting with them. They felt comfortable, which made me feel comfortable acting.
Awardscircuit.com: Awesome, that’s good to hear! I know this is your second time working with director Peter Hedges, so I was wondering if you had any pressure going in or was it easier knowing you were working with the same director a second time around?
CJ Adams: I noticed that it was a lot easier working with the director, because of course I knew him and he just made me feel so comfortable. I know how [Peter Hedges] directs and I know how great of a director he is. It made me feel really good that I was getting directed by him.
Awardscircuit.com: Okay, excellent! So how many kids did Peter Hedges actually audition for the role of “Timothy Green”?
CJ Adams: He said around 2,000 for my part.
Awardscircuit.com: And you got how many call backs before you landed the role?
CJ Adams: I think three…four…four or five maybe?
Awardscircuit.com: Was there one moment you knew you got the part or that you could tell on Peter Hedges’ face that you were the one he wanted as “Timothy Green”?
CJ Adams: Probably at the screen test, because at the screen test after the line [I read], everyone would smile and I was like…oh this seems good (laughs).
Awardscircuit.com: (Laughs) Excellent! So tell me, how was it like working with Jennifer Garner and Joel Edgerton as your parents? Your chemistry was amazing. It was obvious to everyone watching that you guys seemed like a real family.
CJ Adams: Yeah. [The Greens] seemed like a family to me. I mean, it just seemed so natural working with [Jennifer Garner and Joel Edgerton]. I became great friends with them off the set and around the set and stuff. Anywhere I was, I always knew them. Like here, I’m still talking to them when I’m going down the hallway or just chilling in the hallway just waiting for something. They’re always there and I know them really well.
Awardscircuit.com: Did Peter Hedges have the three of you spend time together before shooting The Odd Life of Timothy Green?
CJ Adams: I didn’t see Joel until the film [was about to begin shooting], but I met Jennifer during the screen test, and that’s when we talked the most and really had the chemistry.
Awardscircuit.com: That’s really nice to hear. I know years from now people will be associating you with the role of “Timothy Green” because it’s a pretty big role. I was just wondering how similar you are to “Timothy Green,” and what are some differences between you two, besides the obvious fact that you don’t have leaves growing from your legs (laughs)?
CJ Adams: What I noticed — what I thought was really weird — was that me and Timothy looked a lot alike (laughs from us both). Well Timothy…he did all he could to make people like him, and that’s what I try to do. Say that I have someone jealous of me around school, I would do the best I can to become friends with them. And the differences between me and Timothy is that Timothy did a lot of chores, like always working around the house. And, you know, I do chores sometimes… *stares at his mother, who is in the room with us*… Don’t say I don‘t (laughs ensue from me and his mom). You know, I do a couple but I don’t do them nearly as much as Timothy does.
Awardscircuit.com: (Laughs) Well that’s good. There’s so many messages contained within The Odd Life of Timothy Green and his story. What are some of the messages you want people to take away from the film once they leave the screening?
CJ Adams: I just want them to think that they just saw the greatest movie they ever saw. Like, you can do anything you want if you think you can do it. If someone tells you: “you can’t become a movie star,” don’t believe that, because I’m sure if you put [your mind to it], you will become one.
Awardscircuit.com: Nice! I think my personal favorite scene in the film was when you, Jennifer and Joel all came together to sing War’s “Low Rider.” How did you guys prepare for that scene?
CJ Adams: Well, we had all the extras sitting [on set] and there would be all these instruments there, and I’d pick [one] from them. I went there and I picked the cow bell, and started banging on it and I made a beat out of it. Then after that, Joel jumped in and then Jennifer jumped in, and we had this huge long song. We all danced and played together…it actually made me think different…you know…that’s what really built our chemistry…was [because of] us playing together.
Awardscircuit.com: Yeah, that scene felt like “us against the world.” You three were kind of in your own bubble, and you celebrated that. I really appreciated that moment. Was there a particular scene or moment that was your absolute favorite in The Odd Life of Timothy Green?
CJ Adams: What I liked the most was the underwater scene [with Odeya Rush]. In a wide view, it looked like the water was my own little world. I was on my own and it was all peaceful. I liked it because in between the scenes, I had to learn how to scuba dive because we’d be under [the water] for three hours, just hanging out underwater and talking and stuff. Every once in awhile I’d have to breathe air, so now when I grow up I’ll know how to scuba dive. Say with my family, I can scuba dive with them and look at fishes and stuff.
Awardscircuit.com: It wasn’t mentioned in the film, but was one of “Timothy Green’s” powers the ability to breathe underwater? Was that something you and Peter Hedges talked about?
CJ Adams: I think so…I’m pretty sure. I’m not 100% [sure], but I think he could breathe underwater because plants love water and they absorb it, so I was thinking that maybe his leaves were absorbing the water or something.
Awardscircuit.com: Okay, cool. I think a lot of people will interpret Timothy’s action of outstretching his arms to the side in a variety of ways. How would you personally interpret what Timothy does with that famous stance in the film?
CJ Adams: I think that since he has leaves on his legs, it makes him kind of half-tree, half-human. Whenever the sun would come up, he would just be absorbing the sun and somehow it would give him some signal to do something…inheriting the ability to help [the town’s community].
Awardscircuit.com: Very cool. I’m sure that after The Odd Life of Timothy Green premieres, you are going to be getting a bunch of offers left and right from different producers and directors. Is there any one particular actor or director you’re looking forward to working with in the future?
CJ Adams: I’m looking forward to working with…the guy who played “Iron Man,” Robert Downey Jr…I’d want to work with him, and the director I’d probably want to work with is…Jennifer [Garner’s] husband, Ben Affleck. That’s who I’d want to work with!
Awardscircuit.com: Very nice choices! So what’s next for you? Are there any projects coming your way?
CJ Adams: I’ve actually had to [turn down] two films so far because of this junket, because it’s so important to me right now.
Awardscircuit.com: Well then, thank you especially for taking the time to come to the junket.
CJ Adams: Yeah…*CJ’s mother then informs me that CJ got an offer for Darren Aronofksy’s upcoming film, Noah*. Yeah, I got a part in there, but I had to [turn] it down.
Awardscircuit.com: Still, the fact that you got an offer for Darren Aronofsky’s Noah is pretty impressive. Do you see yourself still acting in the future? Where do you want your career to go from here?
CJ Adams: Well once I’m…in a lot of movies, as an actor I want to help others out there. I don’t want to be known as an actor; I want to be known as someone who helps people, who changes other people’s lives.
Awardscircuit.com: Kind of like Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie and George Clooney, how they go out and do their outreach programs?
CJ Adams: Yeah.
Awardscircuit.com: That is really nice, CJ! That’s all for now, but thank you so much, CJ, for speaking with us at The Awards Circuit. It was a pleasure, and so very nice to meet you. Good luck!
CJ Adams: Thanks! Yeah, you too.
-End of Interview-
I hope this transcribed interview helped reveal what a cool kid CJ Adams is. We wish him all the best, and are looking forward to seeing what other roles he’ll choose and films he’ll participate in. If CJ Adams is already being offered parts in such high profile projects like Noah, the sky’s the limit for him!
Please be sure to check out The Odd Life of Timothy Green, currently in theaters across the nation as of today, August 15th! Make sure to bring your trusty pocket Kleenex as well — you’ll need it!