T.J. McGibbon has been a lot of your favorite shows and movies and we have gotten the opportunity to speak with this talented actress on her many roles, including her character of Emma in The War with Grandpa.
I wanted to introduce you to this young, powerhouse and Canadian actress, T.J. McGibbon. You might recognize her from her some of her very successful roles in film and TV, like NETFLIX’s, “The Umbrella Academy” as Young Vanya, X-Men: Apocalypse as Nina and currently The War with Grandpa, which stars her, as “Emma,” Robert DeNiro, Uma Thurman, Rob Riggle, Jane Seymour and a handful of others. Out on October 9th, this film has humor, charisma and will put a smile on your face. Robert De Nero’s character, a grandfather, is set to come live with his family, until he moves into his grandson’s room, which forces his grandson and some of his friends (T.J.) to declare war on Robert’s character to surrender their friends room, Grandpa decides to get even with the kids. This film is going to show you why this young lady has been a force in the film/tv industry since she was a young kid.
BSCKids: T.J. – Tell us a bit about your work on The War With Grandpa and a little bit about your character?
T.J. McGibbon: The War With Grandpa is about a Grandpa who has to move in with his daughter. He ends up moving into his grandson Peter’s room which means Peter has to move to the attic. So Peter and his friends decide that the best solution is to start a prank war to win his room back. My character’s name is Emma and I am one of the only voices of reason in the show. She is the only girl in a group of three boys which was pretty fun. She tries her best to keep her friends out of trouble, but of course, gets pulled into all of their shenanigans!
Do you have anything in common with your character? How did you get the role?
I think I have a lot in common with my character. I grew up with two older brothers and I got stuck in the middle of many prank wars and lots craziness. I got the audition for WWG about four years ago. I was on vacation at my family cottage when my agent got the breakdown for my character. She called me and told me about it and of course, I came back to the city right away. When I did the audition I loved it and loved the producers in the room but I didn’t hear back and I thought that I didn’t get it. I was disappointed but sometimes that’s how auditions go. That winter my family took a huge road trip from Hamilton, Ontario to LA. After almost two weeks in LA, I got a call from my agent asking if I could come home ASAP and fly out to New York for a table read because I got the role! I was home for a night and then flew straight to New York and met the cast.
Anything funny happen behind the scenes that you can tell us about?
I have lots of funny stories from the set. One of my favourites happened all the time! Sometimes when you are filming scenes, the jokes in the script can get old. They could be hilarious but after the 20th take, it doesn’t sound as funny anymore. On WWG the whole cast and crew would ruin dozens of takes every day from laughing. No matter how many times we filmed the scene we would all burst out laughing as soon as Tim Hill yelled cut.
How was it working with Robert De Nero? Did you learn anything new about acting working with him?
Who wouldn’t love working with Mr. De Niro? He is an industry legend and I am very grateful to have worked with him. One of the most important things that I learned from him is to treat everyone with the utmost kindness and respect. It has always been important to me to be kind no matter what but seeing someone at his level with the same values was wonderful. He learned everyone’s name on set which is very impressive since sometimes cast and crew lists can have hundreds of people. He always tried to make sure that he was making everyone’s day on set as easy as possible. One day he even moved his set chair to sit almost in a bush to be out of everyone’s way!
How was it working on Umbrella Academy, what would you say your favorite part of filming that series was?
I always had fun on set and I learned a lot from everyone. I think my favourite part would definitely the people I got to meet. We have such a talented cast that is super supportive of one another and we are honestly one big family. I am so grateful to have met them all and to have such great friendships.
If you could guest star on any show that is currently in production what show would it be and why?
That is such a great question. I think it would have to be Stranger Things. I am a huge fan of the show and the relationships between the characters. I love that it features such incredible young talent!
Current Favorite Book and Favorite Song?
That’s a hard question. Books and music are some of my favourite things so it is difficult to choose just one, especially for music. An all-time favourite book of mine would be Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. I listen to all different types of music from pop to musical theatre and my favourite song changes daily. Right now I am listening to Taylor Swift’s new album Folklore and my favourite song on that is “The Last Great American Dynasty.” Another two favourites of mine are Breaking Out by my brother Liam McGibbon and For You by my friend Aidan Gallagher.
What is something people would be surprised to learn about you?
Something that people would be surprised to learn about me is that I am an ambassador for Indwell, an affordable housing provider in my city. Affordable housing is a worldwide issue that affects so many people. It is something that we need to be talking about more.
Why should everyone watch The War With Grandpa?
Everyone should watch WWG because it will have you cracking up the whole time. It is a movie that all ages can enjoy!
Is there anything you have coming up that you can tell us about?
As the industry starts to open back up I am looking forward to getting back to work. If you want to keep up with me, go follow my socials. TJ McGibbon Official on Instagram and Facebook and @TJMcGibbon on Twitter.
Make sure to go watch some of the work of T.J. and also follow her on her socials so you can be informed of what she has coming up in the future!