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April 12, 2024 22 mins

This week, Tommy is joined by actor Tanner Buchanan, best known for stealing the world’s attention in his breakout role of Robby in the hit Netflix series, Cobra Kai. Cobra Kai is the sequel to the original Karate Kid films, and the sixth and final season is set to release later this year. But next up, Tanner can be seen in the romantic comedy How To Date Billy Walsh, out now on Amazon. Today, Tanner opens up about how he can relate to feeling misunderstood like his character Billy Walsh, how we all have multiple layers that make up who we are, why we shouldn’t be defined by other people’s perception of us, his journey of becoming comfortable in his own skin, why it’s still hard to get used to seeing himself on a movie poster, what we can expect in the final season of Cobra Kai, how the filming process has been going over the last few months (hint: lots of Advil has been used), and how you too can master a slow motion walk.

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Episode Transcript

Available transcripts are automatically generated. Complete accuracy is not guaranteed.
Speaker 1 (00:01):
Hey guys, welcome to I've never said this before with
me Tommy Deadario. I love when I talk to a
guest who has so many different layers, and the actor
you are about to hear from brings all of that
and more. Tanner of Buchanan joins the show today. Now
you may know this talented guy because he stole the

world's attention in his breakout role of Robbie in the
hit Netflix series Cobra Kai. Cobra Kai is, of course,
the sequel to the original the Karate Kid films, and
the final season, season six, is set to release later
this year. But next up, Tanner can be seen in
the romantic comedy How to Date Billy Walsh, which is

out right now on Amazon. So the film, it follows
a pair of childhood friends, Amelia and Archie. Archie has
always kept his love for Amelia a secret, but just
as he finds the courage to declare his feelings, well,
Amelia falls from Billy Waller, the new transfer student played
perfectly by Tanner. So Today, Tanner opens up about how

he can relate to his character about being misunderstood at
different moments throughout his life. We talk about how we
all have multiple layers that make up who we are,
and we can't be defined by other people's perception of us.
We talk about being comfortable in his own skin and
how it's still hard to get used to seeing his
image on a movie poster. We then dive into what

we can expect in the new and final season of
Cobra Kai that he is filming right now, and perhaps
the greatest lesson you will ever hear in your entire life.
We learn how you two can master a slow motion walk.
So let's see if today we can get Tanner to
say something that he has never said before. Tanner, It's

good to see you, mo man? How are you good?

Speaker 2 (01:58):
How are you?

Speaker 1 (01:59):
It's nice seeing I am fantastic. I have to say
congratulations to you with this film. I watched it over
the weekend and it's so good. But before we dive
into that, I have probably one of the most burning
questions you will ever be asked in an interview. Are
you ready?

Speaker 2 (02:15):
I'm ready?

Speaker 1 (02:16):
How do you master a slow motion walk?

Speaker 2 (02:22):
That is a good question.

Speaker 3 (02:24):
I have not a clue to all, to be honest,
I feel like I kind of just walked in there
and they, I mean, the director was super honest.

Speaker 2 (02:34):
He goes, Listen, most of your stuff is going to
be in slow mo. And I said, okay, and he goes,
you know, you just.

Speaker 3 (02:42):
Gotta he goes, You don't really have to like play
it super slow mo. He goes, but make sure you
take your time because we want to make sure you
have all those little looks.

Speaker 2 (02:50):
And stuff and different like the different stuff like that.

Speaker 3 (02:53):
So I maybe played stuff a little bit slower than
what I'm used to because I'm a little crazy and
like to look all over the place.

Speaker 2 (03:00):
And move my body a little bit more. But this
one was a little bit more subdued.

Speaker 1 (03:04):
Yeah, well, you nailed it. You nailed it. I imagine
that must feel a little funny doing that in real.

Speaker 3 (03:09):
Time, right, Yeah, yeah, yeah, Just the take about fifteen
percent of what you usually do off of that, and
then you're good.

Speaker 1 (03:18):
Well, like I said, the movie is awesome. You play
the new kid who's the popular kid. People really gravitate
towards him, we'll say, But what's cool about the role
is he has a lot of different layers to him.
And there's a powerful moment kind of near the end
that you give this little monologue after a date that's
just so awesome. So I'm curious to know. Are you
somebody who feels like you've been misunderstood throughout your life

or you've been judged one way based on maybe people
not really knowing the real you.

Speaker 2 (03:46):
I mean, I feel like everyone can kind of relate
to that. You know, me personally.

Speaker 3 (03:51):
You know, I grew up in a small, small town
where sports was the big thing to do and I
decided to go the opposite way and pursue dance, and
a lot of people maybe disagreed with that, but you know,
it's what led me to my career now. So you know,
I'm happy with all the decisions that I made. So yeah,

I feel like I can relate to that in a sense.
But like I said, I feel like everybody can kind
of relate to being an outlier at least at some
point in their life of what they maybe don't understand
yet about themselves, or or you know, really being in
school and trying to find out who they are as
a person and not really understanding what that's going to
look like, trying to grow up. Even now, I feel

like I'm constantly learning about myself on my own, and
it may be hard for people to understand what I'm
doing or the way that I'm taking and you know,
it's something that you have to be able to figure
out with you yourself, and I maybe do you want
to say it that way?

Speaker 1 (04:56):
Yeah, for sure. So is that a reason why you
wanted to take on this role because were layers to explore?

Speaker 3 (05:02):
Yeah. I mean I feel like a lot of people
they might watch the film and go, oh, he's just
the American that rides the motorcycle and he's supposed to
be popular, and it's like, like you said, there's that
scene that I mean, Billy really keeps everything to himself
and there's a lot going on in his family life
and we get a little glimpse into that obviously, but

not too much. I did a lot of work kind
of on my own and tried to come up with
different stories and what his life looked like and the
way that it was molded. I've kind of kept it
to myself, as I do many characters. But yeah, there
was a lot of work that went in to try
and figure out just to make sure he had those layers.
As he is a man of few words.

Speaker 1 (05:47):
Well, that backstory is super important, So I'm sure that
was really helpful in creating the role for you. So
what makes you say yes to a certain project like
this one? I mean, you've done so many different things
throughout the course of your career already, You've seen like
you're so hard working, you put your everything into all
that you do. So why this movie?

Speaker 3 (06:05):
When I was first approached about it, Bashing Charithra, I
believe were already attached. I had seen both of their
kind of acting and their careers and had followed them
a little bit and knew that they were amazing actors
and it was also an opportunity. After reading the script,
I realized how funny it was and how different it

was from maybe some of the other writing styles that
I had been in, and knew that it was just
something that I wanted to do. Also, the plus of
being able to ride a motorcycle just about the entire
movie was a big one for me as well.

Speaker 1 (06:41):
Yeah was that new for you?

Speaker 2 (06:43):
No, no, no no.

Speaker 3 (06:44):
I grew up riding dirt bikes and have a couple
of motorcycles, so it was something that was just a
plus that I was like that, I want to ride
a motorcycle for work.

Speaker 2 (06:53):
That sounds awesome.

Speaker 1 (06:54):
Yeah, right, Why not. Why not? That's sick.

Speaker 3 (06:57):

Speaker 1 (06:57):
Another thing I love about this movie is it really
taps into to, for lack of a better phrase, the
mean girl, mean guy culture that we live in, right
and just with phones capturing everything and people putting one
another down and all of that. It really explores that
and how certain people and how characters in the film
really deal with that. And it's so interesting to me

because I think it's something that you can see in art,
but I'm not sure it necessarily stops the people from
doing it to do it further. So it's such a
really unique concept to me, and I love seeing it
because I hope it does. I don't know the answer
to that. I sure hope it does. But for you, obviously,
your character isn't someone in this film who really battles
much of that at all. But how do you kind

of tune out the negative in life and separate yourself
from all of that, for lack of another better term,
that chit storm that exists out there.

Speaker 2 (07:49):
It is interesting.

Speaker 3 (07:51):
I'm right on that cusp of no social media to
social media, so you know, I didn't really grow up
with social media like kids are now. I mean, that's
the entire that seems like what life is now, you know,
And as much as I can understand it, I don't
understand it as well as maybe I should. But I

guess for me, you know, there's always going to be negative.
It feels as though the negative is maybe a little
bit more at the forefront, because obviously it is so
accessible to everyone all over the world. But I guess
the best way to do it is to just know.
You got to ignore a lot of it, especially being

in a career where you know, I am at the
forefront and you know, a lot of people see what
I do and have a lot of opinions about that.
I just got to take it and stride and know that,
you know, I did the best that I could and
as long as I'm happy with myself and what I've

done at the end of the day, that's all that matters.

Speaker 1 (08:59):
Oh well said, And I think that that mentality is
so important to have and only serves you for the better.
And another thing that the movie touches on is constant comparing,
right Like there's you know, girls in the movie comparing
their bodies to each other. There's guys trying to be cooler,
I mean, and so on and so forth. I think
that's such another important thing to shed a light on

in any way that we can. How do you not
fall into that trap right of comparison syndrome? I mean,
have you do you? It's something that I feel like
speaking off of, you know what you don't know about somebody,
And similar to the theme of this movie, you would say, Oh,
you don't have to worry about that. You don't compare
yourself to anybody. So I'm so curious what that relationship
is like.

Speaker 3 (09:40):
Yeah, I mean I feel like it's a natural thing
for people to go, oh, you know, I like that outfit.
I think that you know, I would love to have
that outfit, but that may be too cool for me.
Or he rides motorcycles. That sounds super cool. But ultimately,
if it comes down if that's not your thing, that

you know, that's okay. I definitely when I was younger,
compared myself to a lot of people, like I said,
being and especially now, like I said, with social media
and just this career, I mean, everyone's posting the best
versions of themselves or you're seeing the best versions of
themselves and you just have to go wait a second.

You know, they probably sat there and took fifty photos,
or they tried on ten outfits. Oh, they had their
makeup done. You know, everything isn't as perfect as it seems.
And I did used to fall into that a little bit.
But I think you just got to find where you
are and be comfortable in your skin. It's a really,

really hard thing to do, and it's a really long journey,
and I think it's something that I'll constantly be adjusting
just as the world continues to change, because it keeps
changing faster and faster and faster, and it's hard to
keep up with that. But I think ultimately everybody knows
who they are, you know, in the core of what

they want to do and who they want to be.
And I think as long as you stay comfortable and
believe in yourself, that's where you should live.

Speaker 1 (11:23):
Man, you strike me as someone who's very introspective, and
that's always it's always exciting for me to talk to
somebody like that, because you know, you love what you do.
You're making shows, you're making movies. You're in this amazing
spot in your career at a very young age. You
have this amazing new film that's that's out right now.
As people are listening to this, yet you remain so

humble and so full of gratitude, and I think that's
something that's really going to serve you well for the
rest of your career.

Speaker 2 (11:51):
Thank you. I appreciate it. I try to.

Speaker 3 (11:54):
I don't know, I feel like it's just easier to
try to remember you just don't get caught up in
it all.

Speaker 2 (12:00):
You know.

Speaker 3 (12:01):
I'm just lucky enough to be able to do a
career that I love, and to me, it's a job
and I just go in every day and it's one
of those things that I'm like, I kind of just
can't believe that I get to do this as a job,
and it just so happens that a lot of people
see it.

Speaker 2 (12:17):
But at the end of the day, it's my job.

Speaker 3 (12:19):
And you know, on the sets, it's not just me
and the actors. It's you know, the directors and the
producers and the grips and lighting and camera and the
pas and the ads and catering, you know, and crafty
and transpot It's like, it's not just us, it's a
crew of people, and without everybody, none of it would

be able to happen. So I think as long as
you remember that it's it's a job and it takes everybody.

Speaker 2 (12:45):
You know, everybody's equal.

Speaker 3 (12:46):
You know, there's no one that's more important than the
other other person, because without each other then, you know,
we wouldn't have stuff like the you know, stuff like
this movies.

Speaker 1 (12:57):
It's a big team effort, that's for sure. Do you
see or kind of you know, like, oh my god,
I can't believe that's me on the poster of How
to Date Billy Walsh, Like, is that feeling still present
for you even though you've been working for so long.

Speaker 3 (13:12):
Yeah, definitely, it's it's it's exciting, but it's one of
those weird things, you know. I don't know really how
to explain it other than it's you know, if someone
worked an office job and they did a presentation or
an excel sheet and then the company decides, hey, you know,
to promote our business, We're going to put your excel

sheet on this big billboard and people are going to
look at it, and you go, okay, thank you. But
also that's a little it's a little odd at the
same time because I don't I don't quite understand, but
I will also I appreciate that you are promoting it
and and't want that to happen. So it's a little
bit it's just surreal because you go, oh wait, that's me.

That's a little odd. So I don't know if it's
just something I'm trying to get used.

Speaker 2 (14:01):
To, and I don't know if I ever will, to be.

Speaker 1 (14:03):
Honest, Yeah, well that's a good thing, I think, because
it's going to keep you hungry for more and grounded
and excited to keep doing the work that you're doing.
So when people get done watching this film, what do
you hope that they take away from it?

Speaker 2 (14:18):
Well, first off, I hope everyone enjoys the movie.

Speaker 3 (14:21):
I hope they walk away going, oh, I really enjoyed that,
and the fact that they had just a lot of
fun watching it. I think, you know, you touched on
it a little bit. And with the whole social media
of it all, I hope everyone kind of walks away going,
you know, you don't know the story to everybody, because

as accessible as everybody's life is, you know, I hope
people can walk away and go, oh, you know, I
don't know what's going on in somebody's life, and you know,
I maybe shouldn't have preconceived notions about that. And if
it's somebody that you truly want to pursue to get
to know, get to know them, rather than you know,

judging a book by its cover.

Speaker 1 (15:03):
Well said, Well said, And I think those are all
really important points to take away from a really fun movie.
And that's what I loved about it is it's so
much fun, but it really has these pieces of useful
information and tips that we should all remember going through
this wildlife that we're in. So I think it's a
really important movie to be dropping right now, especially because

it has appeal to everybody, no matter what walk of
life that you come from. What excites you for your future? Like,
you're such a go getter. I know, I know the
rumors about you that you show up first to set
and you're always on time and professional, and you're like
the a star when it comes to your work. And
I know you write a lot and you believe in
manifesting and all of that, so I know you take

your future very seriously, you take your job very seriously.
What's something that's surprising that you want to do in
your future?

Speaker 3 (15:54):
So honestly, right now, I'm trying to get more behind
the camera, not necessarily directing, but the main thing I'm
trying to focus on is kind of the writing producing
side of things. That's something that kind of excites me
that I'm dipping my toe into right now with a
couple of different things, and ultimately kind of want to

move in that direction.

Speaker 2 (16:18):
Still want to be in.

Speaker 3 (16:19):
Front of the camera because it's something that I really
really love, but also be able to get to the
point where I can find stories that you know, maybe
haven't had the chance to be told that I am
able to kind of approach and say, hey, I also agree,
and I think this story should be told and try
to bring it to the forefront for people to be

able to see and you know, learn from.

Speaker 1 (16:43):
Rock em Man. Well, I have no doubt you'll do that.
You see, when your mindset on something, you go for
it and you achieve it. So I see that coming.
I see that coming. And I've got to ask, as
a huge fan of Copra, Kai, I think you're still
in the filming of the new season?

Speaker 3 (16:57):

Speaker 1 (16:57):
Is that correct?

Speaker 3 (16:58):
We are?

Speaker 2 (16:59):

Speaker 1 (17:00):
Cool? How's that all going?

Speaker 2 (17:01):
Are you?

Speaker 1 (17:01):
Are you almost done with the season?

Speaker 2 (17:04):
We are? We are working you know, this season so
far is it's a lot. We're all working harder than
we ever have. There's a lot going into this season
and everyone's truly putting in not even one hundred and

ten percent, We're all putting in two hundred percent. And
I know we say it every year and it's going
you know, and we always like, oh, this season's going
to be bigger and badder than every season.

Speaker 3 (17:35):
This season truly is going to be the biggest season
and there's so much to take in. It's gonna be
a lot, it's gonna be a crazy, wild ride, and
I think it's gonna.

Speaker 2 (17:47):
Make everybody really, really, really really happy.

Speaker 1 (17:50):
Oh nice, have you been using a lot of ice packs?
Are you nursing your muscles this season? From all the
training you're doing.

Speaker 3 (17:56):
It's it's a lot of heating pads and uh that's
assault baths.

Speaker 2 (18:01):
And you know, the icing things.

Speaker 3 (18:05):
And advil for you know, it's, uh, we're doing it.

Speaker 2 (18:12):
All at all.

Speaker 1 (18:21):
Tanner, as we wrap up, the name of the show is,
I've never said this before, So I'm wondering, is there
anything that you can think of, whether it's silly or
deep or whatever might come to mind that is something
you haven't said before.

Speaker 2 (18:35):
Oh boy, I've been alive for twenty five years. I'm
going back in my rips.

Speaker 1 (18:42):
Yeah, yeah, take a minute and whatever comes to mind.

Speaker 3 (18:46):
I'm going to say this, and some people might be
mad at me, but that's okay. I think that In
the Air Tonight by Phil Collins is not a good
song and I can't listen to it.

Speaker 2 (18:58):
And I don't know why.

Speaker 3 (19:00):
It does that thing in my brain where it scratches
it in the wrong way and I can't listen to it.

Speaker 1 (19:07):
So it's a trigger for you.

Speaker 3 (19:08):
Yeah, a lot of people are going to disagree with me,
but it's like nails on a chalkboard for some reason.

Speaker 1 (19:14):
Really, is it the instrumentals? Is it the song? Like
the message? I need a little more information.

Speaker 2 (19:19):
I don't know.

Speaker 3 (19:20):
I every time I listen to it, it like it
gives it Honestly, it gives me the ick, and like
there's something about it that just kind of yeah, in
the Air Tonight just gives me the ick for some reason,
and I just can't listen to it.

Speaker 1 (19:33):
Well, now we have a problem because when I hear
that song, I'm gonna now think of you telling me
that the song gives you the ick, And now I'm
never gonna be able to enjoy the song again.

Speaker 2 (19:40):
It's a glassbreaking moment. It's gonna be a glass.

Speaker 1 (19:43):
Breaking that's amazing, and I will, I certainly will never
hear that song in the same way again. So I
appreciate you sharing that. That's Isn't it funny how we
all have certain things that we can't put our finger on.
Why but it just hits us in a weird way.

Speaker 2 (19:59):
Yeah, it just it's you and you go, I just
it's just wrong. I don't know why. It's just wrong
for me and I don't know why.

Speaker 1 (20:05):
That's amazing. Well, thank you for sharing that. Yes, I'm
sure a very controversial topic is people feel a certain
way or another about that song, but I love it.
Thank you for that problem. So enter the movie is
out now, everyone's going to be looking for something new
to stream to watch. As we close up this interview,
why should we all turn on How to Date? Billy Walsh?

Speaker 3 (20:30):
I truly think it's something that everyone's going to be
able to relate to. You know, everyone had friends or
maybe they went to school, or you know, maybe there
was different clicks of you know, friend groups that they
hung out with or they observed. And I think it's
truly something that people can go oh, I see how

this is and I can relate to that. It also
is the topic of young love, and I assume that
you know, maybe not everyone, but you know, most human
beings have experienced love, especially young love, at some point
in their life, and it's something that they can look
at and go, oh, I remember that time, and I remember,

you know, going through that or feeling those things. And
then also it's just honestly, it's really funny and just
a really fun watch, and I think if people should
just give it a chance, and I think they'll.

Speaker 2 (21:26):
Really enjoy it.

Speaker 1 (21:27):
Everyone go watch the movie now, Tanner. Thank you so
much for hanging out, and congratulations on all your success. Man, truly,
we're cheering you on.

Speaker 2 (21:36):
Thank you so much. I appreciate it all right, be well,
yeah you too.

Speaker 1 (21:42):
I've never said this before. Is hosted by Me Tommy Diderio.
This podcast is executive produced by Andrew Publisi at iHeartRadio
and by Me Tommy, with editing by Joshua Colaudney. I've
never said this before. It's part of the Elvis Duran
podcast network on iHeart Podcast. For more, rate review and
subscribe to our show and if you liked this episode,

tell your friends. Until next time, I'm Tommy Diderio.
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