Actor J.J. Totah Talks About His Role on ABC’s ‘Back in the Game’

J.J. Totah is a young actor with a ton of talent. He is on ABC’s comedy show “Back in the Game.” On the show he plays the role of Michael, who is one of the baseball players on The Angles, a team of pre-teen misfits.

Besides acting, Totah also is a standup comedian. He never wants to give you the usual and gets a great sense of joy and pleasure from making others laugh.

Not only that but J.J. holds the organization Autism Speaks close to his heart as his brother was diagnosed with the disease, and for the past six years, his family has been active in the organization including doing walks and being on the board.

Art Eddy: Tell me about your role as Michael Lovette on “Back in the Game”

J.J. Totah: Michael is a 12 year old boy who loves his Mom, fashion and baseball. He’s very bad at playing baseball but he is really enjoying making new friends and becoming part if a group.

AE: What was the audition process like for the show?

JJT: Funny question because I actually auditioned for Parvu and Owen. Then by mistake, they sent me an audition notice for Michael. I went for a producer call back for all three roles, but I got to screen test for Michael. I’m pretty sure that when I belted out “Born This Way” a Capella it was a done deal.

AE: How is to work with James Caan and Maggie Lawson?

JJT: Well, both my Grandfather’s passed before I was born so I imagine that if you could be on a show with my Grandpa, it would be James Caan. I really love him. He taught me how to fast pitch and bat a ball. OK, I still suck, but that’s what Grandpa’s do. He’s not too fond of my fashion style. He once told me that I look like a lollipop.

Now Maggie is very, very sweet and kind. Not to mention very beautiful. She has a cute little dog named Tristan. I was obsessed with Maggie in “Psych” so getting to act with her is a dream!

AE: What got you into acting?

JJT: I started out in Musical Theatre back home in local productions. Then I moved on to Stand Up and then Television. I just love to perform. If there is a stage, I want to be on it.

AE: Which actor would you like to be on a project with?

JJT: Robin Williams, Jim Carrey, but definitely Vince Vaughn. I would also love to be in a film with Griffin Gluck. He is my best friend and he is an amazing actor.

AE: What would be the ultimate role for you?

JJT: If Coco Channel had a son that took over her fashion house. God hear my prayer and let me play that.

AE: I also see that you are a standup comedian. How did that come about?

JJT: An acting coach introduced me to Joey Paul Jensen, who is a casting director, who runs Standing Tall Comedy Troupe for kids. The rest is history. I’ve been performing at the Hollywood Improv with them every chance I get. I love it.

AE: What is the best part of being on the stage during a set?

JJT: Clearly when your producer or show runner says, ‘Perfect’ or ‘Great Job.’ It is also getting to act with your best friends.

AE: I read that you are into fashion. I am a big sneakerhead. Are you and if so what is your favorite pair of kicks?

JJT: Like anything Converse.

AE: I also hear that you are a big supporter of the Autism Speaks campaign. What type of projects do you partake in with that organization?

JJT: I just emceed the Walk for Autism in Sacramento and on December 1st I’m going to appear at Autism Night at the Sacramento Kings game. I’m also writing a blog for Autism Speaks for other kid siblings of people with Autism.

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