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article imageWill Jason Be Able To Break Out Of The Boob Tube

By KJ Mullins     Sep 4, 2007 in Entertainment
Jason Bateman grew up on the TV. We watched him grow from the oldest kid on The Hogans to the lead on Arrested Development. He's ready to escape the box for the big screen. His new film The Kingdom will be a feature during the Toronto Film Festival.
Jason Kent Bateman was born in 1969. He came from acting stock, dad Kent Bateman is a film and television writer/director and founder of a repertory stage in Hollywood and big sis is Justine Bateman.
"But it was not completely atypical. Doing a television series, there's a very predictable schedule. You start in August and finish in February. And so come February you come back to school and leave the tutor behind.
"So I was in school, and I had friends and did stupid stuff like sports and drinking beer. But I also had this really cool job and could like fly to different places in the country and the world and I could bring a buddy with me.
"There were some difficult moments in junior high school when there was jealousy and animosity and difficulties mixing with certain cliques.
And there was plenty of pressure, in that you needed to maintain a C average to get your work permit. If you didn't get your work permit, you were written off the show. So my childhood was fun but filled with lots of pressure and conflict. But who's isn't?"
Somehow he got lucky and didn't appear in negative articles as he grew up. Bateman wasn't one of those lost kids who graduate from teenage stardom to hard drugs and a police record. Of course having serious goals at a young age may have helped. Having the title of youngest director in television may have helped him also. He directed three episodes of The Hogans when he was only eighteen.
"It was something I was going to go into full time if they would have me. Directing television is a small, lucrative community that one needs to be accepted into. As long as you kiss the right rings, you get to stay in," he says, suggesting he didn't.
"But if my goal is longevity, then why not graduate from television and become a freshman in this new medium?"
He grew up. Starred on a couple of failed television series. Got married. His wife is Amanda Anka, Paul's daughter. They have a daughter, Francesca Nora Bateman born October 28, 2006. His comeback with Arrested Development changed his career.
"I think for a while my name kind of got in the way a little bit, based on all the television I was lucky enough to get early on. After a while, you kind of wear out your welcome in that medium," says Bateman
Bateman has three movies coming out this fall. Not bad for the kid who once tried to bring out into movies with 1987's Teen Wolf Too.
"I was very surprised to get a reading for Arrested Development when I did, because it really seemed to be the opposite of what I was known for," he said in an interview promoting his role in the Jamie Foxx/Jennifer Garner war-on-terror action flick The Kingdom.
"But I guessed right that day in the audition room about what they wanted and I got the part. Not a lot of people in America were watching the show, but some people in L.A. were, and they were people in charge of giving out good jobs."
The Bluth character put him in the spotlight. He had grown up keeping a wry comedic edge to him.
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