Max Slade was born into a family of actors on July 4th, 1980. He scored his first acting role at the age of eight, as the child version of Steve Martin’s character, Gil Buckman, in director Ron Howard’s hit comedy Parenthood (1989). The following year, he took a role in the short-lived Parenthood (1990) TV series (alongside young Leonardo DiCaprio and Thora Birch), this time playing Gil Buckman’s son, Kevin.
Max is perhaps best known for his role as Colt in the children’s martial arts films 3 Ninjas (1992), 3 Ninjas Kick Back (1994)and 3 Ninjas: Knuckle Up (1995). He had studied karate since the age of five and this role provided an opportunity for his acting and martial arts talents to come together. He was the only actor to appear in all three films, his co-stars Michael Treanor and Chad Power having declined to appear in ‘Kick Back.’ (‘Kick Back’ and ‘Knuckle Up’ were released out of order.)
At the age of fourteen, Max worked with Ron Howard for the third time, this time as Tom Hanks’ screen son in Apollo 13 (1995). Working on this film was a profoundly inspirational experience for Max; he was particularly struck by Tom Hanks’ uncommon level of dedication and focus.
Stepping off the high-budget film set of Apollo 13 (1995), Max took on the final role of his child acting career in an independent action film entitled The Sweeper (1996). This role was, in many ways, his most challenging, as it required him to deliver an emotionally-charged performance during a fast-paced shooting schedule.
At the age of fifteen, Max decided to take an extended leave-of-absence from the acting business in order to focus on school, going on to earn a B.A. in anthropology from USC. He has also found time to focus on music, which he has been passionate about since his child acting days. He currently teaches yoga in Pasadena, California.
After more than a decade of discovering new interests, Max has decided the time is right to re-enter the film industry as an adult.
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