He currently stars in Moxie, directed by Amy Poehler, and chats to MiNDFOOD about his multi-pronged career, growing up Schwarzenegger and what he’s learned from his famous folks.
At what point did you realise your parents were famous?
I definitely realised I came from a well-known family probably pretty early on (laughs). I definitely had a different kind of upbringing highlighted by things like visiting my dad at the Capitol or going on set on ‘bring your son to work day’.
Did you ever feel that you had to come out from their shadow?
No. People always ask me, ‘Do you ever think you are going to be as successful as your dad or as your mum?’ Well, that’s not my goal in life. My goal is not to try to out-succeed my parents or anything like that so I don’t necessarily feel or see a shadow that I am trying to get out of, but of course, I am trying to carve out my own name and my own path and my own passions in life.
What important lesson have you taken from your parents into adulthood?
I’ve learned from my mum’s side and my dad’s side the idea of giving back. Obviously, they both have very large philanthropic backgrounds. And you know my dad – one of his rules of success is that you never do it on your own. You’re never really a self-made man, there’s always people that help you along the way. So, when you do find ways to make it in life, you must find ways to always give back.
Do you ever go through your dad’s wardrobe to find interesting or unexpected things about him?
(Laughs) I do like to raid my dad’s closet, maybe for some watches or jewellery, but his clothes are all way, way bigger than what I am, so they don’t fit. I’ve always loved going through photo albums or talking to my dad about his upbringing and his life. He didn’t have kids until he was over in America, I believe he was 50, 48 years old when he had me. So, he had a full life before even having me. He definitely lives every day to the fullest so he has a lot of stories and a lot of things that I continue to learn about from his past.
Tell me about your other interests. You’re involved in a pizza franchise as well as a coffee and ice-cream company with your mum?
Yes, she was involved with me on the pizza company, Blaze Pizza, too, which was a company we started about eight years ago now which grew from inception point to about 366 stores. And at which point I sold my stake in it and created my own ‘Better for You’ alternative venture fund. We invest into anything that’s better for you in alternative health and wellness. We have about 16 companies under my company, like the coffee company called Super Coffee or our hydration company, Liquid IV. We’ve got a bunch of different products under that company, and that’s run by me.
What are you like with cooking?
I’ve definitely improved during COVID because we’ve been home so much, and I haven’t had much else to do for food, so I’ve definitely cooked more at home.
It sounds like you have a head for business. I imagine you must enjoy it given that you could easily just exist off your acting and modelling?
I love business. It’s a day-to-day job for me, and I continue to find ways to learn from other individuals and business continues to shift. You know, the idea of entrepreneurialism and people jumping out of school to start companies so it’s really fun for me to continue to learn and grow on the business side.
You come across as someone who’s comfortable in their skin. Is that an accurate assumption?
Well, I’m still learning things about myself and trying to find ways to be comfortable and not worry about what other people think. Truthfully, it’s probably a never-ending cycle of trying to be comfortable with yourself and finding ways to evolve and change over time. I’m getting there!