Press Pass LA had the rare opportunity to sit down with a leading actor at the studio backlot for an exclusive Q & A just days before the release of his next big film! We chatted with Jonathan Morgan Heit about playing Kip Supernova in “Escape from Planet Earth” releasing nationwide February 15th, and about about how he became a child star and what his plans are for a long-lasting Hollywood acting career.
“Escape from Planet Earth: 3D” is the first animated feature from the Weinstein company, but this is not Heit’s first foray into voice-over work. In fact, he plays the lead character Chubby in Disney’s animated Series Jake and the Neverland Pirates and has worked on nearly twenty episodes of Family Guy voicing a variety of characters. In this 3D animated comedy, Heit works with stars including Jane Lynch, Jessica Alba, Craig Robinson, Brendan Fraser, and Sarah Jessica Parker among other industry heavyweights.
But it is not only Heit’s voice that has put him on the map. You may recognize him from his 2008 breakout role as Adam Sandler’s son in Bedtime Stories, and he has since worked in high profile projects including Gary Marshall’s Valentine’s Day and Date Night opposite Steve Carrell and Tina Fey.
The story of Escape from Planet Earth takes place on planet Baab where admired astronaut Scorch Supernova (Brendan Fraser) is a national hero to the blue alien population. A master of daring rescues, Scorch pulls off astonishing feats with the help of his nerdy brother, Gary (Rob Corddry), head of mission control at BASA, and is a hero to his admiring nephew Kip Supernova (Jonathan Morgan Heit). But when, Scorch gets in over his head and is captured by crazy U.S. General Shanker (William Shatner) and kept hostage with a slew of other fun-loving aliens in Area 51 (Io played by Jane Lynch, Doc played by Craig Robinson, and Thurman played by George Lopes and more), only Kip and his mother Kira (Sarah Jessica Parker) can save the day.
The movie, like many recent animated successes, is as tailored to kids as it is adults, making it an enjoyable film for audiences of all ages. Press Pass LA was lucky enough to also attend the premiere and advance screening of this heartfelt film whose message is about the importance of family and following one’s heart.
To that effect, the Weinstein company could not have picked a better lead in Jonathan Morgan Heit, who in this video interview attributes his continued success to the support of his family and talks at length about his philanthropy work with groups like Kids for Kenya, Soles4Souls, BookPaland Kiva.
It was no surprise when he told us post-interview that he has recently been invited to join the US Fund for UNICEF’s Young Ambassadors to help provide a voice and be an advocate for children. The ambassadors will support and promote UNICEF’s mission to do whatever it takes to save a child through health, nutrition, clean water, education, and protection.
So the question isn’t when will you see Heit next, as he is clearly a young actor with a plan for his career and his passions, but where? The answer is his next project Granite Flats. He leaves this week to film the project for three months in Salt Lake City where he hopes to also learn snowboarding!
Learn more about this original series and watch the trailer forGranite Flats.
Watch the trailer for Escape from Planet Earth.
Follow Jonathan on Twitter @JJHeit