Being called a geek might be the best thing to ever happen to John Francis Daley.
After starring in NBC’s highly praised but Nielsen-deprived series “Freaks and Geeks” as Sam Weir, Daley, 15, has switched networks and is now featured as Peter Horton’s son in the ABC sitcom “The Geena Davis Show.” And during his “off” time, he can be found roaming the hallways — sometimes in a diaper — of a fictional Boston high school in David E. Kelley’s new Fox series “Boston Public.”
While Daley says working with Davis is the first time he’s shared the limelight with a real celebrity and is enjoying his time on the set, the “Geeks” experience was especially rewarding because he knew the show never wavered in its dead-on look at a fictional Michigan high school in the early ’80s despite its ratings dilemma.
“It was one of the best experiences of my life,” says Daley, who played the title role in the Pete Townshend rock opera “The Who’s Tommy” when he was 10. “When I watched it on TV every week I felt really proud. … Before then, I knew nothing about the Nielsens. I thought shows stayed on because they were good.”
Daley has a keen interest in the martial arts and would like to one day combine his thespian talents with his passion for kung fu by doing a film with Jackie Chan. But for now, he’ll take playing in front of a primetime aud, thank you.
“I’m able to do the things I like and hopefully my career will last a long time,” Daley says. “Acting is something that I love to do.”