Eli Baker Talks About Being a Kid, Acting, Bullying, and LifeCategory: Television
Eli Baker is only 12 years old yet he is captivating television audiences with his performance in Growing Up Fisher in which he stars alongside longtime actors Jenna Elfman and J.K. Simmons. In the tough world of acting, Eli landed his first role ten days after signing with an agent. One might wonder why it took so long!
In an exclusive interview, I asked Eli if working on a weekly series is easier or more difficult than he imagined. “It is much harder than I had expected,” he acknowledged. “The hours are long and I am constantly amazed by how hard the crew works to make the actors look good.” This little fellow sounds like a veteran already.
“I would love to make a career out of acting, but I am realistic and know that this can be a very tough business. This is why my education is so important to me,” he said. It’s obvious he has his feet planted firmly on the ground and doesn’t entertain illusions of grandeur. Yet, with his talent, he might just end up with a long career as a professional actor.
“If I am not an actor when I grow up, then I plan on being a cardiac surgeon. Playing a surgeon on TV or in a film would be perfect.” What a clever and insightful boy.
“I have loved entertaining people since the age of two, according to my family,” Eli confided. “I started out as a singer and dancer. Then I attended Camp Broadway in NYC and hosted my first show at BackBeat City Performing Arts School and realized that I also loved to act. I think it’s just in my blood.”
So, with acting “in his blood,” I asked him what are his favorite TV shows and movies, to which he replied, “My favorite TV show is obviously Growing Up Fisher, but The Walking Dead runs a close second. My favorite movie is Talladega Nights. I think I have memorized every line from it.”
Acting aside, it is important to remember Eli is a little boy, although after hearing him answer some questions it’s almost like he is an adult. Sports are another of his passions. “I love playing and watching sports. I play competitive soccer and lacrosse and I also love to play flag football, and to ski. Football and basketball, both professional and college, are probably my favorite sports to watch next to soccer.”
Besides his interest in sports, this young actor has a deeply sensitive side to him, lurking behind those beautiful green eyes. “I am a huge animal lover,” Eli proclaims, “and it rips me apart to see an animal abused or neglected. I wish that I had enough money to save all of them. I hope to raise continued awareness and funds.
“I am also the kid who stops every person I see bullying someone. I am not big, but I am not scared to stick up for kids. I am the one who makes sure that everyone has a place to sit at lunch and someone to walk with in the hallway. Bullying is just terrible. It destroys kids’ self esteem. It really takes an insecure person to have to put someone else down to make himself feel better.”
It’s obvious that Eli Baker has many facets to him, even at his young age. His dedication to stop bullying and animal abuse is heartening. Many young kids in his situation, just starting out in show business, would focus solely on themselves, but Eli is not one of them. He has deep and abiding convictions and will act on them in any way he can.
As a final question to this sensitive, mature yet young, talented boy, I wanted to know what his advice would be to other kids who desire to join the acting profession. His answer is something I would have expected from a longtime veteran. “My advice would be to stay true to who you are. Be real and be kind. Treat everyone around you with respect. And most importantly, never give up on your dreams. They really can come true.”
Eli Baker can be seen every week on Growing Up Fisher on NBC.
About the Author
Francine Brokaw has been covering all aspects of the entertainment business for 20 years. She also writes about technology and has been a travel writer for the past 12 years. She has been published in national and international newspapers and magazines as well as internet websites. She has written her own book, Beyond the Red Carpet The World of Entertainment Journalists, from Sourced Media Books.
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