Disney's latest live-action movie is out this weekend, with dazzling special effects and a star-studded cast that's sure to bring crowds to the theater. But word has it that Deric McCabe, the precocious 9-year-old actor who plays Charles Wallace in A Wrinkle In Time, steals every scene that he appears in, even when he's going toe-to-toe with Oprah Winfrey herself. This is only his fourth acting role — he's appeared in a few low-budget independent films — but his skills and his charming personality are already threatening to make him a household name. McCabe is definitely one to watch.
A Wrinkle In Time is about a young girl named Meg (Storm Reid) whose father has gone missing, McCabe explained in a recent Disney promotional video. In order to find him, "she goes on this amazing journey with her brother and her friend," he said, describing his character of the little brother as "a very sarcastic, smart, genius little boy." He may as well have been describing himself. After praising costar Zach Galifianakis' comedic skills, he noted that Galifianakis' character, the Happy Medium, doesn't like children, "which is hard for me, 'cause, ya know, child," he said in the video, while rolling his eyes and gesturing to himself.
After he was cast in the role, his mother, Judith, posted a video to his Instagram account that showed the boy jumping and dancing as he received the news from director Ava Duvernay. In the caption, she detailed how hard he worked to land the part, memorizing scripts as long as 21 pages overnight "while continuing to spend time with family, do his regular chores, and excel in school."
On a recent press tour in Canada, McCabe told ET Canada that memorizing lines "comes so easy to me," and he's not bothered by nerves or being starstruck. "I don't know how," he mused, "but maybe I was born to do this." Discussing his castmates, he acknowledged that Winfrey — whom he'd never heard of before they worked together — gives the best hugs, as one might expect. As for the best dancer on set, he said, "It's really between Mindy and Reese, 'cause Oprah was making the margaritas... I'm gonna say Reese. She got some moves." He also shared that for his next project, he'd love to do a superhero film with Scarlett Johansson.
During all of his interviews, adults were consistently caught off-guard by McCabe's maturity and wit. He told etalk's Danielle Graham that he enjoyed working with blue screens because "I like to be surprised" with the final product, and said that his first thought after getting the role was, "my hair is definitely not camera-ready." When Graham asked him to describe his favorite scene without giving away too much of the plot, he spoke animatedly about "the hallway," making air quotes for emphasis, in which his character can be seen "fill-in-the-blanking my fill-in-the-blank, and my fill-in-the-blank."
McCabe also told Graham that he's a Drake fan, and he'd be interested in starting a boy band or starring in a reality show in addition to that ScarJo superhero movie (even if she is too old for him). In another interview with Breakfast Television Toronto, he joked about having a "tiny bit of coffee" to prepare for his early morning appearance, and told host Dina Pugliese that he hopes A Wrinkle In Time will boost viewers' self-confidence, explaining that "it's about a girl who has no self-confidence whatsoever, and she walks out like a boss. Like a boss." But the main takeaway, as he said in the Disney promo, is love. "When people see this movie, I want them to feel the love," McCabe said. "Love can overpower anything." This guy is definitely going places.
Check out Romper's new video series, Romper's Doula Diaries:
Watch full episodes of Romper's Doula Diaries on Facebook Watch.