Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made – Exclusive Interview With Stars Winslow Fegley And Chloe Coleman

The world of theatrically-released movies has changed. Nowadays, it’s not very often you get a wide release unless there’s at least a few explosions in your movies. This has led to the proliferation of low to mid-budget movies finding home on streaming services. In this case, it’s led to Disney giving smaller, family-friendly offerings to their streaming service, Disney+.

One such offering is Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made, a charming story based on the novel of the same name, directed by Tom McCarthy, who is perhaps best known for the deadly-serious movie Spotlight.

The film is led by two kids, Winslow Fegley and Chloe Coleman, who I had the chance to speak with about the film. 

“Directed by award-winning filmmaker Tom McCarthy, Disney+’s “Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made,” based on the best-selling book of the same name, follows the hilarious exploits of our quirky, deadpan hero, Timmy Failure, who, along with his 1,500-pound polar bear partner Total, operates Total Failure Inc., a Portland detective agency. An elementary school oddball, the clueless but confident Timmy (Winslow Fegley) must navigate the world of adults around him, including his overburdened mother (Ophelia Lovibond), her well-meaning boyfriend (Kyle Bornheimer), his teacher/nemesis (Wallace Shawn) and a school-mandated guidance counselor (Craig Robinson), all in his quest to become the best detective in the world.”

Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made hits Disney+ this Friday!

LRM Online: So let’s start with probably a basic about your character. What was it about your character that attracted you to want to jump on this project?

Fegley: I always loved how Timmy is different, and he’s not afraid to be himself and that he can’t really be anyone else. He can only be himself, and he’s confident in who he is.

Coleman: I really liked how when I read the script my character’s not afraid to stand up for what she wants. And she’s a feminist. She’s an activist so when it comes to things like that, she’s there for it and wants to make a change in the world. And I kind of relate to that in a way. I mean, with global warming and everything that’s happening in Australia, to be able to make a change would mean so much to me. So I was really drawn to the character, and when we got to do project and work with the cast, I was so happy.

LRM Online: And let’s talk about a third character, the polar bear. So how did you manage to film those scenes? I mean, that must’ve been challenging.

Fegley: So all of the scenes with the polar bear, at least most of them, were this guy named Michael, who would wear this kind of big nine foot suit, and he would walk around like in 90 degree Portland. It was crazy. He kind of made the guidelines for the editing team and also he was just great for me to work off of, block off of him, and I could really see what he was doing and then work off of him. And he did a great job at just being polar bear and he kind of had to master the mannerisms of a polar bear. And I think he had worked on other projects as well, like Planet of the Apes as an ape and crazy stuff.

LRM Online: That’s impressive.

Fegley: Yeah, it’s crazy.

Coleman: Yeah. Some of the things we did, there was sometimes not even anything there. And half of the time, being honest, I would forget that the polar bear is still in the movie. And when I saw it, I don’t know why, but I was like, “Oh wait, we’re going to see the full polar bear.” And I didn’t expect much, but when I saw it it was incredible. Way better than I imagined it. It looked like a real polar bear. The CGI was just unbelievable and beautiful.

LRM Online: So this project is pretty much about you embracing your imagination. You were talking about having to imagine having the polar bear there, and then you’d forget for a moment, “Oh, that’s right. There’s a polar bear here with me.” So how did you incorporate imagination and your own imagination into this film?

Coleman: Well, some of the characters are super creative, like Timmy and also Molly. I mean, she’s quirky and she likes… Especially when it comes to rallies or anything she likes to do, she’ll be there making posters or is always signing up for things. So I had to just channel kind of imaginative middle school girl who’s not afraid of many things and is there for other people and respects and likes to know what people stand up for. So letting my imagination of this character, and when I read the book, I looked at the character who looks exactly like me, like curly hair. I was just like, “Wow,” And I couldn’t believe it. And it was like I was born to be this character. So it wasn’t that hard in some ways to imagine how to be her because in somewhere I was her.

LRM Online: That’s actually very fortunate.

Coleman: You look like the character, in some ways.

Fegley: Well, the fact that it’s kind of a stick figure is…I dunno.

LRM Online: Not sure if it’s a compliment, huh? (laughs)

Coleman: Oh, wait, yeah.

Fegley: Yeah. But it’s really interesting to see how Timmy’s imagination stretches and kind of changes his adventures through his imagination. There’s even these little scenes where you kind of can see what his imagination is like and kind of take a jump into his own world and that’s really cool. And yeah, kind of makes this film really interesting.

LRM Online: So most of us, when I was a kid, believe it or not, most of us had like an imaginary friend growing up. Did you have an imaginary… I mean, we know your character had a polar bear, but for you growing up?

Fegley: Well, I didn’t ever really have an imaginary friend. But when I was like four, we got my, or my family’s dog, Moochy, and he’s kind of always been there for me when I just wanted an animal there. Because sometimes it’s better when you’re just kind of… Talk to your dog or whatever, pet, because sometimes people talk too much when you’re going through tough times and you just want to be with an animal. And sometimes you feel like they can understand you and in such a different way.

Coleman: When I grew up I had quite a range and variety of imaginary friends. It was almost every day I’d have a new one like learn to sleep, you know? But I think mostly when I was younger and I wasn’t going to school and before my sister was born, who I dearly love and is my best friend. She’s not imaginary, but they’re like guidance. I feel like every kid needs a friend. It’s company, a companion. ].

LRM Online: How do you guys balance? You guys have a full load. Us adults, it’s a little easier because it’s like we just have work and maybe school. But you have your career, you have school, you find your time… How do you find time also to enjoy your childhood?

Fegley: Well, on set we would always hang out all the time. Almost every day someone was hanging out with someone and we would go down to the pool and everything. But I think it’s kind of easy to find time to have fun when you’re with amazing people like Chloe and everybody, all the kids.

Coleman: School balancing isn’t ever really been much of a problem. My teacher’s are quite supportive about it so-

Fegley: And there’s always been a tutor on set.

Coleman: Yeah. I mean, it’s a loss at school, but they’ll give me my work and I get it done and send it back to them. And it’s not much of a problem. But I do have my friends who I miss a lot when I’m gone and it’d be nice one day if they could even come with me. I mean, I know they have to deal with school and stuff, but they’re good friends and I miss them. And sometimes I don’t get to spend a lot of time with them, but when I’m home, I love being home and I get to do dance. And I’ve been in dance, I’m thinking about maybe doing point. I mean, big stars, Misty Copeland and people like that. So I mean, when people ask me, “You’re an actor, have you enjoyed your childhood?” I mean, acting is a part of my childhood, so yes.

Fegley: Yeah. And it’s always very fun whenever you’re working on set. And I think that sometimes, I mean, you’re going to miss your friends, but you’ll always make new friends.

LRM Online: And to finalize, since this is a Disney project, what is your all-time favorite Disney film?

Coleman: Oh, putting on a lot of pressure.

Fegley: Yeah.

Coleman: You know what? I got to go with one of the old ones.

Fegley: Winnie the Pooh is pretty good.

Coleman: I’m going to have to say Alice in Wonderland.

LRM Online: Alice in Wonderland.

Coleman: I just, I can’t live without that movie. That is pure imagination. Like okay, look, if I had a dream and I was trying to have my head decapitated by a queen, maybe not so much, but otherwise Alice in Wonderland is an amazing movie that I grew up on. I remember one year I wanted to be her for Halloween, but of course I was somebody else. So I couldn’t live without that movie.

Fegley: Pete’s Dragon.

LRM Online: Oh, that’s a good one too.

Fegley: I’d rather play Pete. But it’s not just because of him. It’s a really awesome film.

Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made hits Disney+ on February 7, 2020.

Don’t forget to share this post on your Facebook wall and with your Twitter followers! Just hit the buttons on the top of this page.


Have you checked out LRM Online’s official podcast feed yet The LRM Online Podcast Network, which includes our flagship podcast Los Fanboys, our premiere podcast Breaking Geek Radio: The Podcast, and our morning show LRMornings? Check it out by listening below. It’s also available on all your favorite podcast apps!

Subscribe on: Apple Podcasts |  Spotify  |  SoundCloud | Stitcher | Google Play

Night Terror Banner   GenreVerse FOR FANBOYS, BY FANBOYS Have you checked out LRM Online’s official podcasts and videos on The Genreverse Podcast Network? Available on YouTube and all your favorite podcast apps, This multimedia empire includes The Daily CoGBreaking Geek Radio: The Podcast, GeekScholars Movie News, Anime-Versal Review Podcast, and our Star Wars dedicated podcast The Cantina. Check it out by listening on all your favorite podcast apps, or watching on YouTube! Subscribe on: Apple PodcastsSpotify |  SoundCloud | Stitcher | Google Play
Share the Post: