Disclosure: I was provided with an all-expense trip to LA by Walt Disney Studios to attend these events. All opinions are 100% my own.
While in LA I had the opportunity to screen Child Support, a game show from Golden Globe and Emmy Award-winning Ricky Gervais and Banijay Studios North America. The series features adult contestants and priceless interactions between funnyman Ricky Gervais and a group of five kids who say the most unpredictable things.
Child Support is hosted by Fred Savage, and contestants are asked to answer 10 questions correctly to earn the top prize. If they answer incorrectly, the contestants have a chance to be saved by the five kids who have been asked the same question by Gervais.
After the screening, we spoke with actor Fred Savage about his role in hosting the show. For those who aren’t familiar with Fred, he started out acting at the age of 9 and is most famous for his role in The Princess Bride and as Kevin Arnold in the TV show The Wonder Years. Upon finding out that we just watched the show he wondered, “how did it come out?” Of course, we all loved it, Fred is a natural at hosting and if he was nervous, you couldn’t tell in the least. Seriously, he was made to host, it just looked so effortless for him and he really seemed to be enjoying his new found role.
Child Support also stars Ricky Gervais and a room full of children. You read that right, a room full of children! It was everything you expected it to be and more! The children they cast were perfection and the interaction between them and Ricky was hilarious.
Children being involved in the show was something that Fred liked because it was something that he could watch with his own children. “I wanted to make sure that it was appropriate. That it was not a lot of like, you know, kind of innuendos and double entendres. I don’t think it’s funny to take advantage of their innocence or naiveté to get comedy out of (them). I can safely say that there was none of that and so this is definitely a family show and it’s something I want to watch with my kids.”
Fred explained that hosting a game show was a lot different than any of his other jobs, in that you couldn’t really let on that you know the answers or sway the contestants in any way. That was tough for him since he’s a big fan of game shows and got invested in the contestants game-play. “When they win, I’m thrilled and when they don’t, I’m just crushed.“
He also explained that it was sometimes hard to keep from laughing and even being frustrated when a contestant got an answer horribly wrong. “There was someone who I was like, that was terrible. I tried to make a little light of it, and bust their chops just enough to like give them a hard time and have it be funny you know, I think that’s part of the fun of it.”
On working with Ricky Gervais, Fred explained that he has only spoken with him on the phone a few times but they haven’t actually met. “He was good with some words of encouragement and support.”
Hosting just seems so natural to him so we wondered how he really felt about his first hosting job. “I just enjoyed it. I had so much fun. This was not a goal of mine, but I learned that I really have this inner game show host just dying to come out that I didn’t even know it was there.”
Since Fred started out in the business so young, we wondered if acting was something his children are interested in and if he would allow them to work in the business. “All my kids are just kind of like natural performers. My daughter especially and she loves an audience. I think they want to, they’d like to see themselves on television and so, but if they really wanted to and go out and audition, I would be totally supportive.” He added, ” I had a very positive experience. I feel like I can be there for my kids in a supportive way, and in a protective way.”
On the possibility of more hosting jobs down the line, he said, “There have been a couple of other hosting things that have kind of come around and I’m a much more open to it, but we’ll see how this show’s received. I think America will tell me if I have a future in this or not. I will tell you. I really enjoyed it.”
Watch “Child Support,” tonight, 1/5 (8:00–9:00 p.m. EST), on The ABC Television Network, streaming and on demand.
STAY SOCIAL WITH CHILD SUPPORT