Troy Gentile finds success with 'The Goldbergs'

Troy Gentile as Barry Goldberg in

Troy Gentile as Barry Goldberg in "The Goldbergs."

Bill Harris, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:42 PM ET

Troy Gentile of The Goldbergs is only 20 years old, but he already has seen the gold and the gutter in the acting game.

“There was the side where I was the hot kid on the block and I was booking everything,” said Gentile, who plays son Barry on The Goldbergs, which airs its first-season finale Tuesday, May 13 on ABC and CTV. “And then there was a time, for four years, where I didn't get anything. And now I have The Goldbergs, after four years of having nothing.

“I'm trying to establish myself as a young adult now. I'm no longer the chubby kid in the wheelchair (in the 2005 version of The Bad News Bears) or the young Jack Black (in the 2006 movie Tenacious D in The Pick of Destiny). But I'm lucky that I went through that (dry spell). I've seen how you can be rock bottom in this industry, and you need to have something to fall back on.

“Right now, being an actor is on my plate, but I was going to community college right before I got The Goldbergs. I was planning on going there for two years and transferring to university. But all of a sudden, you know, life's a trip. So now, I'm like, okay, I guess this is my craft, I've been doing it since a young age. I do want to go back to school at some point. But I'm pretty confident in The Goldbergs lasting for a while.”

Set in the 1980s, The Goldbergs is based upon the memories and video archives of creator Adam F. Goldberg, who apparently spent the decade videotaping family members and friends, much to their annoyance. Sean Giambrone plays the young Adam in The Goldbergs, alongside Wendi McLendon-Covey as mom Beverly, Jeff Garlin as dad Murray, George Segal as grandpa Pops, Hayley Orrantia as sister Erica and Gentile as older brother Barry.

“Every decade has its own thing,” said Gentile, when asked if he ever is appalled by the '80s fashion sensibility that is so prominently featured in The Goldbergs. “What we wore in the '90s, some people look at it as weird stuff. No one wears those neck braces any more, you know what I'm talking about? No one paints their nails black any more.

“It's crazy how things evolve. I mean, when I have kids, there's going to be no iPhones or iPods, it's going to be something way bigger than that.”

Gentile clearly means bigger in terms of impact, not bigger in terms of actual physical size. But be that as it may, the focus of The Goldbergs isn't really the '80s sight gags or terminology, but rather the fact that families in any era can argue over the stupidest things, and it's usually amusing – at least from the outside.

“It's funny you pointed that out, because I guess I've noticed it, but I've never really noticed it until you said it,” Gentile said. “I think that's a huge part of the show.

“It's the little things that can make a family argue, it's always the little things. The littlest things can make the biggest arguments.”

No argument there.

Twitter: @billharris_tv

Bill.harris@sunmedia.ca


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