Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Behind Every Great Man....

You know the saying....
"Behind every great man is a great woman." In this case, that woman is Mom.

Hi there, it's Sheila.
The first time I met Michelle Hutcherson, the Northern Kentucky mother was accompanying her nine or ten year old son Josh to the Fox 19 studios for an interview about his first big Hollywood role: he was the model for the animated boy in the major motion picture, Polar Express. As she describes it, "you and Rob were there when Josh was just a human interest story." We saw something special in Josh, and it's thrilling for us to see that we were right!

Over the years, Josh grew up, not just in age, but in on-screen presence, acting ability, and popularity, but one thing didn't change. Michelle has always been right there with her son, stressing how important it is to be yourself and keep some normalcy in life. Josh's dad Chris and brother Conner are a big part of that too, and I would think the Northern Kentucky community they call home must be as well. Michelle gave up her job as Josh's acting career accelerated. Now that he's 19, and Conner is almost halfway through high school, she is thinking about the next phase.

When Josh and Michelle visited the Fox 19 studios this week, I asked her if she would mind a quick Q & A with me. She's not one to take the spotlight, but she agreed.

What did you do this weekend (while the rest of us were watching Hunger Games)?
"We had nice family time - bowling at Star Lanes, private dinner at Jimmy G's. Josh was really tired, so he had a lot of time to relax and catch up on sleep."

What's a typical day like for you?
"During a movie shoot or when I'm home?"
How about we start with during a movie shoot?
If he's on a shoot, I'll go to the set with him (then some funny banter ensues about when Michelle shows up on the set.)
Josh says, "you totally sleep in, since you don't have to come with me anymore!"
Until Josh turned 16, child labor laws required Michelle to always be present on the movie sets with him. Now that he's 19, (Michelle admits) "I can sleep in, then I'll go watch for a couple of hours, go shopping, do some sight seeing and act like a tourist, mostly shopping. It's actually really boring on a movie set."

Watching him acting in movies for all of those years, have you ever had even an inkling of desire to do a walk-on or do some acting yourself?
"No, I don't like to be in front of the camera. I love the business side. That's why we started a production company (Jet Lag Productions). I am interested in making movies. The goal now is the turn it into a legitimate profitable company."

"A typical day when I'm home is going to the gym, meeting friends for lunch, and then I wrap up whatever I'm doing by 2:30 because then I am running Conner home from school or to soccer practice, academic team practice, and then we go out to dinner somewhere because I don't cook." (Conner is a sophomore at Ryle High School and recently won a big debate competition. He was part of the Ryle soccer team which competed for the state title last fall).

When Josh talked you into letting him try an acting career, did you ever envision girls screaming and crying for your son?
"That was the furthest thing from our minds. That didn't even enter our thoughts."
Not you or your husband Chris?
"No. We didn't think any further ahead than "let's let him try." We've always been the type of people to just go for it, see what happens. everything works out - that's my philosophy."

Does the fame worry you?
"No, because I know him. Seeing him and knowing him as well as I do, I don't see him changing who he is."

Do you ever think Josh missed out on anything that Conner is getting to do, like playing on the soccer team, dances?
"He went to elementary school and a little bit of high school. He didn't go to middle school because he was working. So he did experience a lot of it. Also because he knows everyone here, he participates with Conner. He's gone to high school dances even if he wasn't in school. Everything is a choice. He didn't get to letter in a sport, but he went to Iceland. One is not better than the other, just different."

Will you ever move to Hollywood?
"Yes, when Conner is done with high school we will move to work with our company. It's a family company, and we have to be there for it to work. Conner is interested in a Cal Tech (and a possible major in the field of Physics), so he wants to be out there too."

When that time comes, Boone County will lose some truly nice neighbors. Michelle's been so kind in sharing her family with us, and I can't think of anyone who deserves the good fortune more.

No comments:

Post a Comment