Tai Freligh interviews Maceo Smedley from Marvel’s Cloak & Dagger…
Maceo Smedley is an 11-year-old actor from Texas, whose acting career is skyrocketing into the Marvel Universe. The versatile young actor previously played the series regular role of a young slave named James in WGN America’s Civil War series Underground (with Executive Producer John Legend) about the Underground Railroad, appeared on NBC’s hit medical drama series The Night Shift.
Currently, Maceo can be seen as Young Tyrone (a.k.a. Young Cloak) in Marvel’s new TV series Cloak and Dagger, (starring Olivia Holt and Aubrey Joseph), airing on Freeform on June 7th. He’ll also be seen in Netflix’s All About the Washington’s premiering August 10th. He spoke with Flickering Myth’s Tai Freligh.
What got you into acting in the first place?
It was really just something my parents were letting me do for the summer to keep busy, but one thing led to another, and turns out I happen to like it. People like to see me perform. We just happened to meet the right people at the right time, and things have been working out.
Tell me about your audition for Underground?
Wow! That was back in the day. I can’t quite remember what scene I had to do, but I was sitting on the couch and my dad came in and said “you’ve got the part,” and I started running and screaming all over the house.
Who do you play?
On Underground, I was a young slave named James. My sister escaped and tried to rescue me too. I learned a lot about American slavery playing that part. It also taught me what kids had to go through during that time.
You’ve also been on Night Shift. Who was your character and how did you get that role?
I played a boy who was lost in a mob of protesters. My character was scared and was tear gassed. It was a very emotional show. The cast was awesome and I got a chance to go to New Mexico.
Describe your character on Cloak & Dagger.
I play a Young Tyrone or Young Cloak. It’s when we see how Cloak got his powers and the things he does as a kid. You will get to see how events in your childhood can make a difference in life.
How did you get this role?
Joe Pokaski, the writer for the show, also wrote on Underground. He helped cast me for this part. He is such an awesome guy and I thank him for having faith in me and my acting. The only catch was that I had to hurry up and learn how to swim so that I could do some of the stunts.
Can you tell us any dirt on the show?
The stunts and special effects are going to be the best. You have never seen this stuff on TV before.
Talk about your role in All About the Washingtons on Netflix. What was your audition like for that?
Yes, in August on Netflix, I will be in a show called All About the Washington’s. The show is starring Rev Run and Justine Simmons. It will be a very funny sitcom that I think everyone will love. On that show I play the youngest son in the family named Deavon. He is a funny kid and is always finding a way to get into something.
I was filming in Canada and they flew me to LA for the final audition. I was told later that my headshot picture was already in the writing room before I even audition for the role. It was almost like they already knew I was the one.
What was it like working with Anna Kendrick on Noelle?
She is hilarious in real life. I was having a tough first day of filming and she really helped me out. She’s cool and down to earth.
You’ve been acting for six years now. What’s your approach to the roles you’ve played?
It kind of comes natural to me. I can read the script and envision how the character should act and respond to the events.
You’re on multiple social media platforms. How do you use social media and what’s your favorite one?
I try and keep my fans updated on projects that I’m working on. I also use it to keep in touch with my friend since I’m always traveling. I used to do a lot of Facebook and Twitter, but now it’s mostly Instagram and Snapchat.
Any upcoming projects?
I have been on a few auditions lately. Most of them movies and I’m really excited about that. We will see what happens.
How do you survive the zombie apocalypse?
You pretend to be a zombie. They never hurt each other.
Name one actor/actress you’d like to work with in the future?
Cloak, of course.
If not acting, what is your future career choice?
Have you played the new God of War game?
I haven’t played that one yet. I really want to play it. I have been totally consumed by Fortnite.
“Marvel’s Cloak & Dagger” is a coming-of-age series based on the beloved Marvel characters. Tandy Bowen and Tyrone Johnson come from starkly different backgrounds, each growing up with a secret they never dared share with another soul.
Once a privileged little girl, Tandy Bowen watched as her family was destroyed by a disastrous storm that uprooted her life. Now in her late teens, an unexpected encounter with a boy named Tyrone sparks a life changing event.
Young Tyrone Johnson wanted nothing more than to prove he was fearless. But when everything he held close was taken away, life taught Tyrone to be afraid. Now older and more sheltered, Tyrone closes himself off. But when he meets a girl named Tandy his life changes forever.
Cloak & Dagger is set to premiere on June 7th on Freeform.
Tai Freligh is a Los Angeles-based writer and can be found on Twitter.
Headshot Photo Credit: Bobby Quillard
Cloak & Dagger Stills: Freeform