Questions and Answers With Dylan Sprayberry

As it turns out, Superman may be able to learn a few things from the kid who plays his teenage counterpart in "Man of Steel." Though Dylan Sprayberry, whose prior credits include an episode of "Glee" and "iCarly," spends plenty of time at the gym working on his super-strength (if his Bieber-esque Instagram gallery is anything to go by), the 14-year-old has the whole all-American justice thing going on. When asked to recount his most heroic act, Sprayberry hesitates, then says that his older brother has cerebral palsy.

"You know, sometimes — he won't always get it, because he's such a nice person so people who know him know he's so cool — but sometimes people that don't are like, 'Oh, wow. Wow.'" Sprayberry said of his brother. "And that really bothers me, so I'll stand up for him. You know, I'm always, like, taking care of him. He's a really cool guy."

Once you've got that dusty apartment situation taken care of, Sprayberry had plenty of lighter topics to talk about. NextMovie chatted on the phone with the boy who would one day be Superman prior to the release of "Man of Steel," finding out what music he listened to to get into character, the action figures hidden under his bed and playing laser tag with Diane Lane.

"Man of Steel" is about to come out, so you must be getting more and more attention now.

Yes it is, it's been good, though.

Is it comfortable for you to be interviewed, or is it still weird?

I'm getting used to it, I just relax. I use the same technique that I use for auditions and meetings, to be calm and just be yourself. Really, if you do that, you'll be fine. I listen to some music before I go anywhere, really. I listen to music to kind of calm myself down.

What do you listen to?

When I'm going for a movie audition or a meeting for a movie or a thing like that, I'll listen to whatever I think the character would listen to. Like I had like a bully character once and I would listen to like, really mean rap songs. For Clark Kent, I would listen to some country music here and there, and some like Neil Young, things like that. I just felt like that's what he would listen to.

It's kind of like music that makes you really angry, or it can calm you down, or it can make you introverted. Something that calms me down, I guess, is Mumford and Sons. I love them, I saw them in concert the other day. That was crazy. That's something I listen to to calm myself down.

What's the biggest thing that's changed for you since being cast as Clark Kent?

Really, just knowing that I'm going to be in this worldwide, great, epic movie. And all the hype that's coming with it, I've never — you know, I have a few interviews today, and all this hype, and I've never had that before. It's all changing in a good way. My life's changing in a very good way. With this movie, I went to BPA, which is a really great agency, things like that are really helping out my career. It's great, and I'm very grateful for that.

Have you always been a Superman fan?

Of course I'm a Superman fan, of course! Everyone is!

Do people still even read comics? Or is that not a thing anymore?

Oh, yeah. I still read comics. I have a whole comics collection. I have action figures and comics and everything! I have artwork about Superman, too.

Did you collect all that before you got the part, or is it a more recent thing?

This is like before I got cast, years before, I started collecting comics and things like that. It always interested me what the artists and different people did with superheroes, but then once I started hearing about Superman, I was like, okay, I have to learn more about this. I had some of his comics and I was reading them, but like now that's what's taking over everything. It's taking over the whole collection.

Show off some obscure Superman trivia. What do you think I don't know about Superman?

What do I think you don't know about Superman?


Um, what do I think ... He's not human. If you didn't know that.

I did know that.

He's definitely not a human! [laughs] He has an amazing six-pack. You might be able to tell that from the skin-tight suit. He's just like, I think from the movies before, which were great classic movies, you could see that he was a shy person, but you couldn't tell as much that he just really wanted to be a human. That's what this movie is all about. I think that he was bullied as a kid, and people don't really know that, because it wasn't really shown a lot before now.

What kind of relationship did you have with Diane Lane and Kevin Costner, who play your parents in "Man of Steel"? Were you intimidated?

I wouldn't say intimidated, because I know that they're good people. I was a little bit anxious to kinda meet them because, Diane Lane and Kevin Costner, they've been working for so long and this is the biggest thing I've done. I was really not sure what to expect. Then I met them and they're just like anyone else I know, they're just like normal people that have this amazing talent to act.

They're great. The funny thing is I went bowling with Diane Lane. That's like something that would be in a fairy tale maybe, like a fairy tale about celebrities. We went bowling and we went laser tagging. It's kind of hard to imagine Diane Lane or Kevin Costner laser tagging, but it happened! It went down.

Are they good at bowling?

I didn't go with Kevin, but I went with Diane and Cooper [Timberline], who plays the younger younger version of Superman, Clark Kent. And yeah, everyone was actually pretty good. I was even surprised at myself, because I've never bowled that well. it was a while ago though, like two years ago, so I can't remember what the score was on it.

Is Diane Lane competitive? Was she trash talking?

Bowling was more laid back, like let's go hang out, laze around and maybe not really bowl. But we went laser tagging and she was like, I just remember someone would pop up behind her and surprise her and she'd shout, "Oh my God!" It would freeze her for like three seconds and she'd just freak out. It would be so funny. Competitive in a gracious way, not like, oh my God, she's so competitive. Very gracious. We were having fun and trying to laser tag each other.

What's the most heroic thing you've ever done?

I don't know, um, probably, actually something in this movie. No, uh ... I think that I give a lot of, actually my brother has cerebral palsy, which is a mental disability.

He's older, he's 28, but you know, it's a really really, I don't want to say bad, but it's a really serious disability. He's in a wheelchair, and it's hard for him to talk, so whenever I'm with him, he's my main focus. He's such a nice person, you never meet anyone nicer than him. Some people just don't really know. Everyone does it in different situations, you judge before you know someone. Which is something that humans do in general, and it's hard not to.

Which superpower of Superman's would you most like to have?

I always say super-strength because I think it's really useful for anything, like helping out people. Like, "Oh, you need me to move this giant crane? I'll move this giant crane!" He has so many powers, like every comic he has a new power. These basic powers are like taking 1 plus 1 and it equals 2. You add different things up to make new powers.

No laser vision?

I like super-strength more. Laser vision's a little iffy sometimes. Flying still takes time, but Superman flies really fast, faster than the speed of sound, you know, that's pretty fast.

Will you wear the Superman suit some day?

Maybe sometime in the future when they decide to make the movie again, when they decide to make it later. That would be pretty cool. I don't think I'd fit in the suit, because Henry Cavill is like 6'4" and 200 pounds or something. He's way bigger than I am, I'm like 5'6".

Well, you're going to be 15 in a few weeks, on July 7. You'll grow. What do you want most for you birthday?

Actually, a big thing, because Comic-Con is coming out during my birthday. I turn 15 on the 7th, and Comic-Con is on the 17th. I want to do that. I'm going to save my money and spend all of it there.

What are you a geek about?

Obviously comics and action figures. I have a whole box of action figures under my bed. I keep them there because I like having them there. I'm a geek about pretty much all of the things you'd expect: comics, movies. I have a lot of movies, I watch them all the time. I kind of like the ... I have to watch my TV shows when they're on. Like "Boardwalk Empire" and "True Blood" and "Shameless." If certain shows are on at a specific time, I have to be home to watch them. My favorite shows, you know.

Whose career would you most like to steal?

That's hard to say. There's so many actors. Personally, I really like Christian Bale. I love his career because he's a really diverse actor. He's able to pull off different things that some people can't. But I like having my career because I'll be able to build it the way that I want to build it. But if I could steal a career, it would be his, because he went from playing a superhero to a boxer to so many different things that it's just unbelievable that he's able to do that. Also the skill that it takes to do that is something that I'm trying to develop.

Would you ever play another superhero, like if Batman was rebooted in ten years and you got an offer, would you do it?

It's hard to say, because I feel like I'm loyal to Superman now. You never know, so maybe. One thing that I find interesting is that they're going to make an Aquaman movie. I think I'd be good at that because I have all the swim training from this movie, so I could say, "Hey, you know what? I know how to swim now!" So maybe when I dye my hair blonde again, we can work something out! But whatever comes along, if it's the right time and the right deal, we'll see.

What did you buy with your first acting paycheck?

I've been acting for like ten years, I don't even remember. Actually I bought a bike, more recently, I bought a bike with an acting paycheck. It's a BMX bike. It's so cool, so cool.

What's the weirdest thing anyone's ever said to you on Twitter?

I can't say it! I can't really say. It's like, really weird, really. I won't mention that one, it was pretty bad. The weird things that have happened are just, ugh, way beyond what can go in a magazine.

Would you ever get a tattoo?

Of Superman?

Any tattoo.

Uh, maybe when I'm older. Something not too big. You know, as an actor, you need to kinda stay, not like goody-two-shoes, but not too crazy. Not tattoos all up and down, but maybe one or two. I like the idea of showing really great artwork and skill.

Using the formula of your first pet and the street you grew up on, what would your porn name be?

Mine's probably Lucy, I had a dog named Lucy, and my street is Lemp. Lucy Lemp. That's my porn name.