Actor Fred Savage is known as awkward teen Kevin Arnold from his days on “The Wonder Years.” He clumsily navigated the troubles of adolescence like most kids. However, with a huge crush on Winnie Cooper, a loyal best friend and worrying about being popular in school, he was pretty much a regular kid in middle America.
In real life, the star says his experience wasn’t much different. He didn’t embrace the Hollywood-child-star thing like some other young actors. Savage was an Emmy-nominated actor, sure. But he was also just a kid living a relatively normal life. Now, the actor tells People he’s grateful for that.
“I had really supportive parents and my friends and social life were not show business people,” Savage said. “I had a regular life.”
And that suited him just fine. Savage is thankful he had some kind of shield from fame. It kept him grounded, but also let him be a kid.
“The being famous part was never really part of my experience. I was insulated from it. I got to go to the Emmys and be the grand marshal of the Mardi Gras parade and have all these cool experiences, but whether I was famous or not never really registered for me, and I think that was better in the long-term.”
Fred Savage Pursues Activities Outside Acting
Additionally, Fred Savage was able to pursue other interests outside of acting. Following the wrap-up of “The Wonder Years,” Savage actually went on to finish high school. He then got accepted into Stanford University where he studied English.
“Hollywood nightlife and the trappings of Hollywood weren’t really part of my experience,” he says. “I wasn’t friends with a lot of Hollywood people. I was friendly with them, but that wasn’t my life. I’d be lying if I didn’t say at the time that I thought I wanted it to be! But I had a really full life with great friends.”
While Savage took on small acting roles following his time playing Kevin Arnold, he never quite had another hit like “The Wonder Years.” Now, the actor is turning producer and director as he makes a reboot of the beloved classic. However, he remains nostalgic about his experience with the 90’s drama.
“People work their whole careers in show business to be part of something that endures and means something to people,” Savage says. “The fact that I was able to do that at a young age is really special to me. And I look back on it with an incredible amount of gratitude.”
“The Wonder Years” remake will have a modern spin on growing up and what it means to be a kid. It airs Sept. 22 on ABC.