For Mystic Inscho’s first regular screen character, he stars in the Disney+ series The Mysterious Benedict Society as one of the lead characters Reynie Muldoon. Series 2 of the screen adaptation of Trenton Lee Stewart’s children’s books has been announced for a release later this year, with Mystic reprising his role alongside a cast including Tony Hale, Emmy DeOliveira, Marta Kessler and Seth Carr. As an actor, Mystic has worked on a number of short films and, on stage, he played Zack Mooneyham in the Broadway National Tour of School of Rock, visiting cities such as Toronto and Ontario, and he is now working on his own music. Mystic chats to us about being in the cast of The Mysterious Benedict Society for Disney+, playing Reynie Muldoon in the series and his time touring with School of Rock.
You play Reynie Muldoon in the Disney+ series The Mysterious Benedict Society, can you tell us about your character and what is he like to play?
Reynie is my better self. He is kind, intuitive, thoughtful and a good role model for my personal life. Playing him alongside the other cast members was a bunch of fun.
The series is based on the children’s books by Trenton Lee Stewart, how much did you know about the novels before auditioning and was there anything that drew you to the screen adaptation?
I read the books after getting the part. They were a great read and I loved the story about how different abilities needed to work together.
Do you remember how you felt finding out you’d booked the role and how is it having Reynie as your first regular character on screen?
It is an honour to play Reynie, and I was terribly excited to get the part. I remember jumping up and down in disbelief and hugging my parents.
How is it reading the scripts and what’s it like getting into character for filming?
I love reading the scripts! They are one of my favourite parts of being an actor because they tell the story in a very personal way. I always try to act out the lines as I read. I always have the scripts well memorised before filming. Reynie is very similar to me, so getting into character is pretty easy.
What do you enjoy most about being on set of a Disney series and what’s it like watching the completed episodes for the first time?
My favourite part about being on set is probably having a sense of importance. When you are on set, it makes you feel like you have a purpose and have work to do. When I watch the completed episodes, I try to reflect and see where I can improve, but it is hard not to be critical when you watch your own performance.
Do you have any stand-out highlights from playing Reynie and working with the rest of the cast so far that you can tell us about?
My work has required homeschooling so I never could maintain very many friendships. Working with the cast has been a great opportunity to make new friends and have fun. There are a lot of scenes I am excited for viewers to watch.
It’s been announced that Series 2 of The Mysterious Benedict Society will be released later this year, what are you looking forward to for the upcoming series?
Season 2 is another big step for me and I hope we will get lots of new viewers. People can binge-watch Season 1 while waiting for the weekly releases. I am also excited to watch my own acting and see what I can improve on!
You’ve worked on a number of short films, can you tell us about some of them and what are short films like to work on?
Short films were an important experience. Each character you play is unique, so I got some valuable experience and made connections. It was also super fun meeting aspiring directors and actors like me.
On stage, you played Zack Mooneyham in the Broadway National Tour of School of Rock, what are some of your favourite memories from being part of the show?
Some of my favourite memories on the show were playing with the cast backstage, decorating our dressing room doors on Christmas, and just hanging out with the other kids in general. There were 16 kids and we spent a lot of time together so we formed a close bond.
What was Zack like to perform as and how did you find the experience touring for the first time?
Touring was fun but hard. We had eight shows a week, so we were busy. We moved cities almost every week. Each city had interesting new experiences, and my favourite cities we visited were probably Toronto and Ontario.
Had you seen the show before joining the cast and what do you remember from your first and last performances as Zack?
I saw the movie before joining the cast and then saw the show in San Francisco with the previous Zack. My first performance was riddled with nerves, but as time went on, performing became sort of a daily routine.
How did you get into acting and is it something you always wanted to do?
My parents say that I liked to perform before I can remember. I started with dancing. Then I learned guitar and played on Broadway. I acted in short films in LA and got lots of positive feedback. When I got my role in The Mysterious Benedict Society, I started focusing more on acting. I loved all of these experiences, but acting is the best.
What are some of your favourite films, TV and theatre shows to watch?
I love superhero movies and shows such as The Umbrella Academy, Man of Steel and all the Spider-Man movies. I also like action in general including shows and films like Cobra Kai, Ready Player One and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. My favourite theatre show is obviously School of Rock, and another one is the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory musical.
How do you like to spend your time away from acting?
I love playing lots of sports including soccer, basketball, volleyball, football, dancing, and water polo. I also love playing video games, playing music, reading, singing, writing songs and martial arts.
Have you been given any advice over your career so far that has stuck with you and what advice would you give a new actor starting out?
As my middle school principal once said, “Discipline beats talent when talent has no discipline”. Also, even if you try your hardest and do everything you can, sometimes you’re just not right for the role. The casting directors could be looking for someone taller or shorter than you, someone with a different hair colour, and a variety of other different things, so don’t stress about it too much.
What are you hoping the rest of 2022 brings for your career?
I am focusing more on my music at the moment, but I would love to have a new project to work on. Meanwhile, starting high school is exciting. I hope I can make lots of new friends.
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