Midnight Son

If a tragic teen coming-of-age film doesn’t exactly sound like the kind of fare you’d expect to find starring a Schwarzenegger, it’s because you’re thinking of the wrong Schwarzenegger.

Audiences eagerly awaiting Patrick Schwarzenegger’s first starring role in a feature film, in Midnight Sun, opposite former Disney star Bella Thorne, will see it first at Easton Town Center at a premiere screening conveniently coinciding with the elder Schwarzenegger’s annual sport and fitness festival—including an in-person appearance by the new leading man.

“I’ve been coming to Columbus every year since I was born. It wasn’t until I was 10 or so that my dad put me in charge of his memorabilia booth at the Arnold Classic,” he revealed. “We had photos and t-shirts for sale. So it taught me some early lessons in business while raising money for his After-School All-Stars charity.”

Following his father into the family business also included cutting a little class, even at an early age.

“One of my first memories of filmmaking was visiting my dad on the set of Batman & Robin. It was initially frightening to see him as Mr. Freeze, all blue and bald. But it helped me realize as an actor, you get the chance to be someone else,” he recalled. “He’d come to my school, pick me up in the Hummer, and take me to the set where I’d watch him work—to see how he interacted with other actors and directors. We didn’t always tell my mom.”

Despite Patrick’s celebrity pedigree from both parents, Schwarzenegger has focused primarily on supporting parts until now. But a leading role doesn’t mean he isn’t still interested in working on independent projects with seasoned writers and directors to better hone his own craft.

“I wanted to get my feet wet, but I wanted to finish school. I was in both business school and film school, so I was trying out for smaller roles in smaller films that I could do during the summer,” Schwarzenegger said. “Midnight Sun was the time I took a break for a film, then went back to school. But those earlier films allowed me to watch more experienced actors work. That’s why I’m as interested in shooting a day here or a day there in a supporting role as I am in taking leading ones. That’s how you learn to be a better actor.”

Midnight Sun will premiere at Easton AMC 6:30 p.m. March 3.