Get to know Australian actor, Jayden McGinlay! The talented star has a role in the latest Disney Movie, The Curious Case of Dolphin Bay, out June 11!
Jayden McGinlay is a versatile actor with experience on both stage and screen! Having most recently played the lead role of “Cecil” in Stephen King’s short story Children of the Corn, he can also be seen in the Netflix Original mystery thriller, Sweet River.
For his next big project, Jayden now stars in the new Disney movie, The Curious Case of Dolphin Bay. The actor plays the lead role of Teddy opposite Izabela Rose (Upside-Down Magic), with the film officially dropping on June 11th (tomorrow!) on Disney Channel.
Check out our conversation with Jayden below, as he gives us the inside scoop on his career to date, his latest role in the much-anticiapted Disney film, and more!
Can you tell us about how your acting career started at the young age of 6, in which you were the youngest person ever nominated for a Gold Palm Theatre Award for your first lead role as “Oliver Twist” in Oliver! The Musical.
When I was a toddler, I discovered my dad’s DVD collection and one of them was Cats on Broadway. I loved it and most of my childhood home videos consist of me dancing and singing in my underwear to that and other musicals, and reenacting scenes from films. So, my mum enrolled me in a local theatre school when I was 6, I started auditioning for roles in community theatre productions, and I was in Music Man and Oliver before landing my first professional role when I was 8, which was Jeremy Potts in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.
Your new lead role as “Teddy” in the latest Disney movie, The Curious Case of Dolphin Bay (2022), is airing on Disney Channel on June 11th at 8 PM. Tell us about this exciting new role and what we can expect to see from the movie.
In the film, four teens participate in a summer internship for marine biology. After Quinn and Daniela have a little fallout, my character, Teddy, convinces Quinn to join him on an adventure. It was so much fun to play Teddy and I really love his character traits. He’s funny, kind, and caring, and he’s also extremely determined and dedicated. He’s a bit dorky but still has integrity! He begins this incredible adventure with no worries, he can just see this end goal. As the story progresses, we get to see different sides to his personality, his showmanship, his vulnerability, his confidence, and his doubt. Audiences are in for a really fun, exciting adventure with many twists and turn along the way.
You most recently played the lead male role of American teen, “Cecil” in the re-imagining of Stephen King’s short story Children of the Corn. In terms of your career to date, do you have any favourite roles or characters you’ve portrayed? If so, what did you love about them?
Playing Cecil was an amazing experience. The film was the only film in the world shot entirely during the lockdown in 2020 and the producers were absolutely incredible, putting in place tons of safety measures to keep us all safe. I felt so honored and grateful to be able to work through those early days of the pandemic, in our bubble! It’s a horror of course, which is one of my favourite genres, so I loved it and Lucas Foster and Kurt Wimmer were brilliant and so awesome to work with.
Teddy in ‘The Curious Case of Dolphin Bay’, was so much fun. I was able to inject a lot of my own personality into him and have a lot of fun with the role. Our Director Christine Luby was amazing and allowed us to play around a lot with the characters and gave us quite a bit of artistic freedom, even though we only had 15 days to shoot the movie. We were able to try out the scenes in different ways and ad-lib. We all just clicked instantly on set and had the best time together- we all became like a family. I also got to swim with sharks, which was epic!!
In addition to being awarded three scholarships through the American Arts, Film, and Television Academy in recognition of your talent, what are some of your other proudest accomplishments to date?
My proudest accomplishments are the two most recent films I’ve been in – Curious Case of Dolphin Bay and Children of the Corn. I feel really grateful for those roles and being on set working is the most rewarding experience in the world for me.
Talk to us about your passion for supporting wildlife charities, of which include World Animal Protection and Currumbin Wildlife Hospital, as well as how those interested can help support the initiatives.
Well, I’ve always loved helping animals and raising awareness for different issues around that.
When I was 8, there was a WSPA (now called World Animal Protection) charity stand at our local shopping center. I went over to the guy and asked him for more information and he talked a little bit about the bear bile industry. That really affected me as I had no idea things like that happened and was really horrified. I asked ‘How much do you need? I have 42 dollars in my piggy bank.’ And the guy said when he was a kid he made and sold bracelets to raise money, so I came up with the idea of making hand-painted animal bookmarks and drawings and I bought the supplies with my $42, made my own website for people to order them, and ended up getting donations from all over the world. I raised about $1,500 and that started a passion for me of helping wildlife. I realized that it doesn’t take much to make a bit of a difference.
Those interested in supporting World Animal Protection can go to their websites and donate, or they can start their own fundraisers.
What’s next for you?
I’m currently finishing my final year of high school and then who knows where things will take me!
Published by HOLR Magazine.