Earlier this year, Tyler Wladis started his role as Roy in the The Fairly OddParents: Fairly Odder – the Paramount+ live-action reboot of the Nickelodeon animated series The Fairly OddParents – with the comedy premiering in March. In the Broadway production of Mrs. Doubtfire, Tyler made his Broadway debut at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre playing Christopher Hillard, alongside a cast including Rob McClure and Jenn Gambatese, and he stayed in his role until the musical closed earlier this year. Amongst Tyler’s projects, he had his first series regular character in Single Parents as Graham D’Amato, and in 2017, for his first major role, he played Randy in A Christmas Story Live!. Tyler answered our questions about playing Roy in The Fairly OddParents: Fairly Odder, making his Broadway debut in Mrs. Doubtfire as Christopher Hillard and his first series regular role in Single Parents.
Can you tell us about The Fairly OddParents: Fairly Odder, in which you play Roy, and what did you know about the Nickelodeon animated series before booking your role in the Paramount+ live-action reboot?
I wasn’t really familiar with the original The Fairly OddParents animated series before I got the audition, but I started watching it as soon as my older siblings (who grew up with FOP and were HUGE fans of the show) told me I HAD to audition for it. Our new live-action reboot is similar in style and humour to the original show, except now there are two kids – Roy and Viv – who share the Fairies and we take turns making wishes. It’s the same Cosmo and Wanda as cartoons in the now real-life cartoon world of Dimmsdale. It’s just crazy fun!!!!
What is Roy like to play and how was it reading the script for the first time?
From the first side I read, I knew Roy would be the perfect role for me to play – I was like LET’S GOOOOOO! He does all the things I love to do: play sports, hang out with his friends and sing and dance. My favourite part of playing Roy are all the comedic bits – I love being a goofball on set! And I got to do a ton of stunts, which is probably my favourite part!
Is there anything you enjoy most about being on set of the series and working with the rest of the cast?
Set life is my jam. Everyone has been so welcoming and we all get along really well – like a family. My favourite part would probably be the creative energy and encouragement from everyone… or the breakfast burritos from Crafty.
Why would you recommend watching The Fairly OddParents: Fairly Odder and who do you think it will appeal to?
There really is a little something for everyone. It is written for the pre-teen set, but the subtle humour of the original series that always had a broad appeal is captured so well. Also, Roy and Viv’s parents – Rachel and Ty – were 90s kids, so there is a lot of 90s humour sprinkled in there.
What was it like seeing the series released and the fans’ response to the reboot earlier this year?
It was crazy to see it all come together, especially the way Wanda and Cosmo were layered in. As much as I love working with a cardboard cutout on set, getting to see them illustrated into the scene made it finally feel real. It was also so exciting to see how funny my older siblings, the hardcore OG fans of the original series, thought it was.
How was it watching the completed episodes and do you have any stand-out highlights from playing Roy so far?
I loved watching it almost as much as I loved creating it. The stunts were my favourite things to film – one of my first days on set, we filmed the scene where I fall through the skylight in Viv’s room! Watching the show, I think my favourite episode to see was Back to the Scooter, which was a play on my favourite Michael J. Fox movie!
You made your Broadway debut this year in Mrs. Doubtfire as Christopher Hillard, how was it having the musical as your debut?
There was so much emotion in this moment. Broadway was my dream and the whole reason I got started in the first place. I’m so lucky to realise my ultimate dream at 12!
What was the musical like to work on and can you tell us about your time in the show at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre?
Every moment was incredible. I loved my role and even more the people I got to work with. I learned so much watching the ridiculously talented people around me S L A Y night after night!
What did you enjoy most about playing Christopher and working with the rest of the cast, which included Rob McClure and Jenn Gambatese, and is there anything you miss most about the role?
Christopher was so funny, but most of all, I loved the opportunity to show off my dance skills. I am a classically trained ballet dancer so getting to be in big Broadway dance numbers night after night was such a thrill. Rob McClure and Jenn Gambatese are two of the nicest and most talented people I have ever worked with. They were the perfect mom and dad and I miss them both every day.
You had your first series regular character as Graham D’Amato in Single Parents, what was this like?
Being cast in my first series regular role was a huge thrill. It was such a comedy masterclass getting to work alongside Brad Garrett, Taran Killam, Leighton Meester and the rest of the amazing cast. Plus, I got a built-in set of besties to work with in the rest of the kids. It was really magical. I still love binging the series on Hulu. It’s like watching old family movies!
How was it being part of the Single Parents cast and what do you remember from your first and last days on set of the project?
First days were a dream and I kept pinching myself. The last days we didn’t know were the last days. We left believing we would be coming back for Season 3. We were all so in love with the show and each other that it was true heartbreak when we got the news that ABC pulled the plug. But that’s showbiz… kid.
What are some of your favourite memories from your time playing Graham in the show?
We had some really fantastic guest stars. I think a highlight for me was when Leighton Meester’s real-life husband, Adam Brody, was cast as my character Graham’s father and we got to do a bunch of scenes together. It was so sweet and so much fun.
In the 2017 release of TV movie A Christmas Story Live!, you played Randy, can you tell us about this?
This was my first big booking! Wanting to do Broadway and TV and then being cast in a TV musical was like all the best things happening to me at once. I was seven and the very youngest cast member so everyone was super nice and caring. I still love them all!
How was it performing the musical numbers and what do you remember most from filming?
The big musical numbers were so much fun and I loved our whole cast but I think the most memorable moments were with the Parker family. Maya Rudolph, Chris Diamantopoulos and Matthew Broderick were such professionals and taught me so much about live performance. Plus, getting to work with Ferris Bueller? COME ON! What a dream come true!
Where does your love of acting come from and how did you start?
It all started when I was three years old and I just wanted to dance. At my first recital, I found my love of performing. My mom then signed me up for theatre camp at the Ogunquit Playhouse in Maine and they cast me in my first professional musical when I was six. Everything snowballed from there.
Do you have any favourite films, TV and theatre shows to watch and how do you like to spend your time away from your career?
I am a huge SNL fan and I have watched every sketch from every episode on YouTube. (My dream is to be a cast member one day! Lorne! Call me! I’ll do my own stunts!) I also love Trey Parker, Matt Stone and the South Park franchise, especially their musical, The Book of Mormon. When I’m not working and not at the dance studio, I am playing or watching sports. I am a huge sports fan! I cheer for the all the New York teams but basketball is my favourite sport to play.
Can you tell us about some of the other screen and stage projects you’ve been involved with during your career so far and do you have any upcoming projects that you can tell us about?
I’ve done a bunch of workshops and readings for NYC theatre. I also did a feature film called After Class with Justin Long, Richard Schiff and Fran Dresher, which was pretty cool. As far as upcoming, Nickelodeon is going to be releasing The Fairly OddParents: Fairly Odder on their network this fall. Fingers and toes crossed for Season 2! In the meantime, I’m just enjoying being a regular kid! I’m getting ready to head back to school, prepping for the modified soccer and basketball season and fitting in my dance training sessions.
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