June 30, 2023  224 
Jack Quaid on Making Superman More Relatable – Collider

Jack Quaid has done it all. He’s been a part of major franchises such as The Hunger Games, Scream, Star Trek, and Spider–Verse, he plays Hughie on The Boys, which is one of the biggest shows on streaming, and he’s worked with some top–tier filmmakers, including Steven Soderbergh, Martin Scorsese, and Christopher Nolan. This summer, he’ll be voicing one of the most beloved characters in all of pop culture, Clark Kent, better known as Superman, in the Adult Swim animated series My Adventures With Superman.

The anime–influenced series follows a much younger Clark Kent as he begins an internship as a reporter at the Daily Planet alongside his best friend and roommate, Jimmy Olsen (Ishmel Sahid) and the ever–ambitious Lois Lane (Alice Lee). When new threats pose a danger to Metropolis, Clark realizes that he’ll finally have to put his powers to use, which runs the risk of putting his loved ones in danger.

I’ve always been a big fan of Quaid’s work, he was actually one of my first Twitter interactions a few years before I started working here at Collider.

I was lucky enough to get to talk to Quaid about being the new voice of Superman, what previous incarnations he looked to for inspiration, if he’d ever want to play the character in a live–action project, and more.

COLLIDER: First of all I really wanted to start this interview out on a bit of a fun note. This feels like a full circle moment for me because you were one of my first celebrity Twitter interactions…

JACK QUAID: Really!?!

So I dressed as Hughie from The Boys a few years back and you Quote Tweeted me and that made my whole year.

QUAID: Oh man, well it’s this thing where I’m eternally grateful to anyone who cosplays as any character that I play cause, you know, I’m a nerd, so I dressed up like characters that I like, and I consider that such a… I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart to anyone who dresses as Hughie because it just means so much to me. So thank you again. That’s so nice.

You’ve been part of a lot of great and cool franchises. I know you were in The Hunger Games. Logan Lucky is a personal favorite of mine.

QUAID: Thank you!

Obviously The Boys, and soon you’re going to be in Oppenheimer, and now you’re Superman as well. So I wanted to know, what is a franchise or property that you’d want to do next? Is there anything in particular?

QUAID: That’s a very good question. I mean I kind of want to see what happens. Sometimes calling your shot, is I feel like, maybe it makes it like it doesn’t happen. But I’m a big Star Wars fan so I’d love to play around in that universe, I’ll be whatever. I’ll be like a blade of grass on a forest planet, on Endor, if you’d want me to be. And, yeah, I love the sci–fi realm. I also had the pleasure of being, I’m also a huge Star Trek fan, but I’m on a Star Trek animated show and I got to cross over into live–action and play Boimler on Strange New Worlds and that was a dream come true because I actually got to be on a practical Star Trek set with the LCars and the bridge and that was so, so, so cool. I got to wear the uniform, so that was a total dream come true. I feel very lucky that I got to be in any one of these things, let alone all of them. So you know, whatever comes my way, I will gladly take it. I grew up as a nerd and to get to play around in these sandboxes continues to be one of the greatest honors of my life. I really do love it so much.

You just mentioned Lower Decks and that you’ll be bringing your character to life this summer and let’s just play a hypothetical. Let’s pretend that the James Gunn thing is not even happening. Would you ever want to play Superman, on your own, in live–action?

QUAID: I mean sure, if the opportunity ever arose. Um, here’s the thing though, I hold voice–acting and live–action acting, I hold them both in equal, high esteem. To me, I got to play Clark and I got to play Superman. The fact that I got to voice them at all was genuinely such an honor. What I like about this Superman story is that it tells the story of Clark and Superman from such a young place. He’s still figuring out his place in the world. Almost every episode has a moment where someone asks him, “Who are you?” or he asks himself “Who am I?” It’s a journey of self–discovery. You get to see him and Lois’ relationship from the beginning, so I think that I got to play a version of Superman that felt very unique in terms of things we’ve seen from him. Obviously, there’s been comic books that covered this time, but just to do it in a cartoon that I think is so genuine and heartfelt was such an honor.

Going back to the youth thing, it made it relatable to someone like me. I’m also in my twenties, I think I’m around the same age as Clark in the show. So how much of your own personality did you bring to the role of Clark? Did you ever look back to previous comic iterations or animated iterations?

QUAID: Oh yeah, definitely. I read All–Star Superman, was a big inspiration. I think with that one you really do get to see how absolutely genuine that character is. Superman For All Seasons does a similar thing. Those were two really big inspirations for my rendition of Superman. What I liked about this version was he’s Clark first, you know. He starts off like Clark isn’t a persona he puts on in order to be more appealing or to have people underestimate him. Like that’s who he is deep down, and he’s still figuring out who he is as Superman, all the while juggling being an intern at a newspaper, and he very much wants to be a reporter as well, which I think is so cool.

But yeah, I definitely did imbue it with my own personality. You know, I’ve also been a person in my twenties trying to figure out who I am and where I fit in. I think that getting to kind of harken back to those days in this character has been therapeutic and very fun. Very, very cool.

I really liked the chemistry that Clark has with both Lois and Jimmy in the show. And I was wondering if you ever interacted with your co–stars (Ishmel Sahid and Alice Lee)?

QUAID: It’s funny, I never met Ishmel, who plays Jimmy, before. We corresponded a bit and basically just messaged him saying what a great job he’s doing, and he’s a very, very nice guy. But Alice and I, we met one time while she was coming out of a session, and I was going in. We started this process in 2020 or 2021 when it was still pretty… COVID restrictions were making it hard to record in the same room. But she was wonderful, and I think both Ishmel and her knocked it out of the park as their characters. I was watching the show, and I was watching the Clark and Lois scenes and I found myself getting emotional, like I just think that they’re so sweet together and I love these three characters. I love that it’s a three–hander, you know? I think a lot Superman stories, you know, follow Superman, which is great, but I like that in this show Lois and Jimmy are equally as part of the show as Superman is. It’s about the three of them, not just him and I think it’s such a great dynamic that I just love watching. And the two of them just knocked it out of the park.

You mentioned that you recorded a lot during 2020 and 2021, so obviously, this has been in development for quite a while. How did you first become attached to the series then?

QUAID: Oh well, I got an email with an audition, and I think that my first response was like (sarcastically), “Oh yeah, I’ll play Superman.” I just never thought in a million years it would happen. But you miss a hundred percent of the shots you don’t take, so I sent in an audition. A few weeks went by, which usually means you probably didn’t get it, and then I get an email that said I got it, and that was huge. I still really can’t believe it, like me saying I’m Superman, it’s kinda hard for it to come out of my mouth.

But I was just ecstatic at the tone of the show, finally getting to see the show, you know I would see it a little bit in ADR. I love how it’s taken a little bit of anime influence, I love the style of it, I think it’s a version of Superman that we haven’t really seen before. I love that he’s new to his powers as well. There’s still certain powers that he’s discovering like he doesn’t really know that he has. And it’s just been such a great experience that I consider just such a gift, you know, I still can’t believe that I’m involved, and I think the show is wonderful.

So it’s like not only to be Superman but to be in a genuinely great cartoon that I think I would’ve totally watched as a kid, but also, I probably would’ve watched it if I wasn’t Superman. I just think it’s a really fun ride.

I’m loving the show so far, I’ve seen the first seven episodes…

QUAID: Thank you.

I can’t wait to show one of my friends who, we always watch these kinds of animated shows together…

QUAID: Yes! Great!

It’s been a joy talking to you. I’m not even using hyperbole when I say that you are probably one of my favorite actors on the rise right now.

QUAID: Nate! You’re amazing, man! Thank you for saying that!

My Adventures With Superman premieres on Adult Swim on Thursday, July 6th at midnight, with new episodes streaming the next day on Max.

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