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Wonderland Magazine


If the first things that come to mind when you hear the words “child star” are DUI charges, squabbles with the paparazzi and unusual works of performance art, then consider Joey King as a true exception to Hollywood’s stereotype — the young actor has been climbing the steady road to success for over 14 years and isn’t showing any signs of stumbling.

Perhaps the secret to the getting to the top in one piece lies in a solid starting point, which in King’s case takes the shape of a cereal commercial and a collection of home movies created with her sister and fellow actress, Hunter King. “One of my favourites that we made was called Revenge About Cheerleaders,” she tells me when I manage steal five minutes away from her busy schedule. “We shot it at our house and I was in charge of sound effects, wardrobe and playing a cheerleader’s father – clearly it was a legit production.”

Legit production or not, it already sounds like a film I’d like to see, and Revenge About Cheerleaders is now part of an impressive repertoire of movies. In fact, with roles in titles ranging from The Suite Life of Zack and Cody to Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises, The Conjuring to Fargo, you’ve probably seen the 18 year old grow up on screen before your very eyes, and in turn, King has witnessed the initial whirs and murmurs of a slowly shifting industry along the way.

I feel the industry has become more inclusive in a lot of different ways. We’ve been seeing more people fighting for equal pay, we’ve seen more films that have people of different backgrounds and colour, and we’ve seen more women in roles that they deserve to have — just to name a few things,” says the LA native. “In this business – and in any business – there’s always been the good, the bad, and the ugly. Hopefully by people publicly trying to make a difference we’ll see much less of the bad and the ugly.

With the recent release Netflix’s adaptation of Beth Reekles’ best seller, The Kissing Booth, and the much anticipated release of Summer ’03 in September, 2018 is perhaps King’s biggest year yet. She’s also about to embark upon filming The Bayou, an upcoming thriller starring Dylan O’Brien and Academy Award winner, Gary Oldman. “I’m honestly so excited for this role and this film, I think I’m gonna explode,” she says.

Though, even with all the big titles, it’s charm that’s King’s ace — she’s got bags of it. “My advice is don’t take yourself too seriously,” she says. “Be silly, have fun, and don’t try and be a different person to who you are because you think that’s what others expect of you.” Wise words from Hollywood’s most promising young talent.


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The Laterals


Early this month, Netflix released a film about a high school student being forced to choose between her best friend and secret crush. Titled The Kissing Booth, Joey Lynn King stars as the outgoing Elle Evans, who is fairly popular among her peers but has never gone out on a date, let alone been kissed. However, things take a turn when she ended up at a kissing booth, facing her best friend’s brother. Although the storyline may not appeal to the older crowd, this romantic comedy has managed to beautifully capture the ups and downs of infatuation.

The optimistic, upbeat Joey is exactly the kind of California girl that people instantly fall in love with, hands down! Born and raised in Los Angeles, you may know the American actress from her role as the well-meaning troublemaker Romona Quimby in Romona and Beezus, the 2010 adaptation of Beverly Cleary’s book series. Thriller enthusiasts may recognize her as Christine Perron, the first Perron in The Conjuring who noticed malevolent spirits in the house. And chances are, some may have identified her voice in animated films such as Horton Hears a Who! And Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs.

Now, Joey is branching out into other films, with a role in James Franco’s upcoming comedy-drama Zeroville and a star turn in Slenderman, where she plays a high school girl who sets out to find her mysteriously missing friend.

Being in this industry from a young age, do you sometimes believe you’re missing out on life?
This is a question that I get frequently, and I can honestly say no. I don’t feel like I’m missing out. I feel like I’m the luckiest fricken girl alive. I really love what I do, and I also love the snacks on set. If anything, everyone else is missing out on those snacks.

“I love bringing books to life on screen. I think what Beth Reekles did with The Kissing Booth was incredible. This teenage girl starts a story on Wattpad, and then gets herself a book deal and THEN it gets made into a feature film for Netflix!? It’s truly inspiring.”

Summer 03 is a fun, nutty film! Tell us how you got involved in it and your initial idea of its storyline. Do you have a specific favourite scene or quote in the movie?
Summer 03 certainly is a nutty film. When I first read the script, I immediately fell in love with it. It is funny, shocking, raunchy, and relatable. I mean the list goes on. I think one of my favorite scenes filmed was my big speech at my grandmother’s funeral in the end. It’s WILD.

How does it feel to be in a book-to-film adaption whereby the book is written by someone of your age?
I love bringing books to life on screen. I think what Beth Reekles did with The Kissing Booth was incredible. This teenage girl starts a story on Wattpad, and then gets herself a book deal and THEN it gets made into a feature film for Netflix!? It’s truly inspiring. I love the story and the way the movie came out so much.

You met your boyfriend Jacob Elordi at The Kissing Booth. Tell us about your first impression of him and how did it develop into something more? Would you like to work on another film together with Jacob in the near future?
Tis true!! Jacob and I met while filming on the set of The Kissing Booth and we honestly hit it off the minute we met, but just as friends. The shoot was about two months long. For the first month, I would say he became one of my best friends and I felt so comfortable around him to a point where we were both like “Hey, this person makes me feel happy and warm. Maybe there’s something there.” The best part is, we’re still best friends and we would love to work together again someday.

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