It’s awesome when child stars grow up into really chill adults. Obviously it’s great when they’re not getting plastic surgery or shooting heroin into their eyeballs. And it’s even better when they continue to actually do good work like Tina Majorino or entirely reinvent themselves a la Neil Patrick Harris. But there’s also something to be said for a guy who was known for an iconic role in his youth and then took a step away from acting and did something entirely different.
Take Danny Tamberelli, who we know as Little Pete on Nickelodeon’s ’90s classic The Adventures of Pete & Pete. He just turned 30 and has a couple projects in the works, including his band Jounce and a sketch comedy site called Man Boobs Comedy. He also appears at Pete & Pete reunions and, most recently, did an AMA (Ask Me Anything) thread on Reddit.
“Hey redditors, I narcissistically searched my name a few weeks back on here and saw a request for me,” he wrote. “I am pumped to do this.” Unlike some celebrities who only pop in for a 1-to-2-hour window, Danny has spent the last four hours scrolling through his AMA thread and answering questions, mostly nostalgic musings about Nickelodeon.
Buried in the thread, so far down that I had an entirely different headline for this post until I came across this nugget, was a fascinating tidbit Danny shared about growing up as a TV star. While he never had any Lindsay Lohan-style benders, he did start smoking on the set of Pete & Pete… and he made out with a 17-year-old Jessica Biel at the Kids Choice Awards one year. (They’re actually the exact same age, so he was also 17, and I’m going to guess that that was the 1998 or ’99 awards.) Here’s the story, and his follow-up:
i did get to drink underage at a couple spots in LA. I did get to drink, make out briefly and see some 17yr old Jessica Biel boobs. My favorite after Kids Choice Awards moment. At least I think it was her…Thats my story. My friend also made us all really good NJ fake ID’s
those were all the details i got. It was a brief flash. It was like my first encounter at a strip club where you realize you can look but cant touch…We used to chill when I lived in LA, but that was the only encounter of lips and boobs. detailed enough? I feel like i just took all the mystique out of it
On the contrary! This is the most interesting news I’ve heard all day. You always wonder about this generation of kids who grew up together, and how they interacted with one another behind-the-scenes. Circa 1999, Jessica was still the angelic eldest daughter on 7th Heaven; in 2000, she would pose topless for Gear magazine in an effort to seem more adult. So, Danny Tamberelli glimpsed her boobs before the rest of us!
Photos: Nickelodeon fan wiki; Ian Wilson/WENN.com