‘Parenthood’s’ New Young Star Xolo Mariduena Talks Nabbing the Part, What to Expect for Victor (Q&A)

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At the end of NBC drama Parenthood’s Season 3, viewers found Julia (Erika Christensen) and Joel (Sam Jaeger) finally getting the adopted child they were hoping for – with a twist. Enter Victor, an older kid who suddenly found himself a part of the show’s Braverman brood.

“Well, the cast is really nice. So, it’s easy to fit in when everyone’s nice,” Xolo Mariduena, who plays Victor, tells Celebuzz.

After just two auditions, the producers cast Mariduena in the role. But, he did have to make one concession.

“They liked how I read the lines,” the 11-year-old says. “The only thing they didn’t like was my hair. So, they had to cut my hair for the season finale. But, then they let me grow it back for the fourth season.”

Celebuzz spoke with the young Los Angeles native about nabbing the role, what we can expect from his character and which actor on the show he’d like to work with more.

Celebuzz: How did you feel after your last audition and when you found out that you got the role?
XM: I felt good. There were only a few kids, like three or four. So, I knew I had a 20, 30 percent chance that I would book it. When I found out I did book it, I was over-the-top excited. I was so happy.

CB: But, how did you feel about having to cut your hair?
XM: I was a little sad about it. But, I would totally cut my hair for a TV show like this.

CB: How tough was it to get comfortable working with the cast?
XM: Well, the cast is really nice. So, it’s easy to fit in when everyone’s nice.

CB: It seems things are changing for Victor. What can we expect for him over the next couple episodes?
XM: Over the next couple of episodes, things will get better. They won’t be perfect, but they’ll get pretty good. He’s gets a little bit more attention from what happens in the last episode and something in the next episode. And he gets a lot more comfortable.

CB: Your TV dad, Sam Jaeger, directed the last couple episodes. What’s he like as a director?
XM: It was fun. He’s a great director, because he likes to let you do some ad-libbing. I like that, because it makes me have to think about stuff… We shot for a couple days when we did that last episode and there wasn’t too much trouble. He’s a nice guy and doesn’t get stressed when he’s directing.

CB: Is directing something you would want to do someday?
XM: I think directing’s cool. I don’t know if I’d like to be a director or a producer or someone like that. It seems like a difficult job. It might not be a fit for me, but it seems like a cool job.

CB: There’s some heavy things going down with Kristina’s cancer diagnosis. How do the kids in the family handle it?
XM: My character doesn’t know anything about Monica Potter’s character having cancer. I know that none of the kids will find out, because it will be too much for them or they wouldn’t know how to take it… I remember that some of the crewmembers were crying after we shot that scene. So, it’s a lot more involved. It’s a lot of sadness, I guess. And it’s a lot to take in. And it’s also just heartbreaking to know that there are a lot of people in the world who do have cancer. So, it’s really something that people can relate to.

CB: What would you like to see for Victor’s storyline on the show?
XM: I don’t get to work with Jason Ritter very much. But, we talk often. He’s really cool. He’s very funny. And he’s also really great at doing dramatic roles. So, that’d be pretty cool.

Parenthood airs Tuesdays at 10 PM on NBC.

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