‘Ozark’ Actor Skylar Gaertner Gushes About Working with Jason Bateman

by Amy Myers

As a young actor, Ozark star Skylar Gaertner has learned so much from his castmates, especially Jason Bateman. Since starring in the series in 2017, the teenage actor has grown immensely during his time as Jonah Byrde within the intense and captivating plotline.

When we first saw Gaertner’s character on Ozark, Jonah was a reserved, upstanding kid. However, after finding out about his parents’ true occupation, we begin to see the true elements of Jonah’s nature unfold. He becomes a bit braver and certainly more committed to his family. He even goes so far as to brandish a gun at his neighbor when he believed she threatened his family’s wellbeing. Throughout the series, Gaertner portrayed an increasingly complex character. Jonah Byrde demonstrated how one’s morality can quickly change when their loved ones are at risk.

According to the 17-year-old, much of his success on the show was thanks to his talented co-stars. Recently, in an interview with Starry Magazine, the Ozark star expressed his gratitude for his castmates.

“Every day is a masterclass when you’re lucky enough to be surrounded by so many talented people and it’s amazing to see how everyone brings something different to the table,” Gaertner shared. “Jason has such a sense of ease in his acting that it often feels as if he isn’t acting at all. Laura somehow makes every single moment count for so much (sometimes without saying a word). And plenty of others have such flawless approaches to their characters that you can’t help but be drawn in. Being in that environment, I can only hope that I am absorbing some of their technique along the way.”

‘Ozark’ Star Shares Some of His Favorite Moments on Set

From Gaertner’s comments regarding his castmates, it seems there’s never a dull day on the Ozark set. The 17-year-old actor found it hard to choose his absolute favorite moment. So, instead, he named moments both on and off camera that have stuck with him.

“Well, there’s plenty to choose from. Whether I’m driving a boat, shooting at watermelons, eating breakfast from our amazing catering or hanging out with the cast and crew, it’s always enjoyable,” Gaertner shared.

The Ozark star also mentioned one moment during filming that particularly enjoyed. Following the death of his Uncle Ben, Jonah’s parents discuss returning to normal. Jonah, unable to keep quiet any longer, blurts out that the family will never be “normal.”

“This scene just felt like a defining moment for the Byrde family because it captures the struggles that real families often deal with, namely, what is normal?” Gaertner said. “The writers did a masterful job setting this up, and I think the level of relatability causes the show to resonate with a larger audience.”