Jason Presson and I grew up together in North Hollywood. We lived a couple blocks from each other as kids while we were both auditioning for parts in movies and TV shows during the 80’s. We’ve been friends now for over 20 years. Jason heard I was in town and showed up at my Dad’s house on Saturday night. We ended up going down to Hollywood Boulevard with Mary and Greg to hang out and walk around.

Jason Presson on Hollywood Boulevard (Hollywood, California)

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  • BubbA StEvE LaRiZ

    That guy to me will always be a Legend!
    I grew up watching Explorers and the Lady in White is a film my mother and I both share as a personal favorite between the two of us!
    I wish things would have worked out better for his career,I feel he deserved it!
    Well from here until my end his character as well as the others in the wonderful EXPLORERS will remain something special to me(his was one of my favs because he was the take no crap kid and kinda mysterious one)!
    Thank You Jason Presson for such an AWESOME performance!
    Take care
    God Bless!

  • It’s true… he is an AWESOME performer… and he’s a wonderful friend, too.

  • rejjie

    What happened to his career?? You would think that being alongside actors such as River Pheonix and Ethan Hawke that he would have had tons of work for the screen…What part did he play in Gremlins 2???

  • To tell you the truth, I think he just lost interest in acting. He is very intelligent and very sensitive, which is what made hims such a great performer. He also saw what the business is like at a very young age, and after seeing Hollywood for what it is, I think he just decided that he wanted to take his life in a different direction. He continued his education, works in healthcare, and invested his money in real estate.

  • neworleanslady

    Yaaaaa!!!! Glad to see an update, a few friends and I watched Explorers the other night. Hadn’t seen it in years and it was a lot of fun.

  • Hey, thanks for commenting. I’m sure he’s happy to know that he still has fans.

  • Chuck

    Well I am glad he is still alive. It has been depressing learning that some of my favorite child stars died seemingly by their own hand. Not sure why I did not know this but I never really pried much into actors lives until recently when NetFlix gave me back all the old shows. I wish someone would do an updated Explorers for the current generation. Don’t have to change story or the characters, just update the look, technology and make the aliens a lot less Jim Henson like. That was the only part that disappointed me about the move was the aliens. Glad we saw them late otherwise it might have ruined the whole thing.

  • It is sad to see what’s happened to so many child actors… but that’s what makes the news. You never hear about the ones who don’t end up in tragedy because that’s just not what people seem to want to know… or at least it doesn’t sell the magazine, so to say. I think an explorers revamp would be awesome.

  • B5

    It is good to know that he is ok… He was right, I mean he is right what he says about that business…
    I have just watched Explorers again as a small girl.
    And I am happy to hear that he is a good friend. You are lucky…

    From the other side of the world..

  • Samantha

    I LOVE Jason Presson!!!

    That’s pretty cool that you know him, but what sucks is that he was never as popular as the actors he worked with. You said that he is very intelligent and sensitive, and you can definitely tell that by his performances. Why did he always look so sad and depressed though? I always wondered that, but maybe it was just his character. Do you know how to contact him? If he does not want fans bothering him (I know I would not) then that is fine, just wondering.

  • Hey Samantha, thanks for your comments… and you’re right. He likes his privacy. I’m glad he has so many fans.

  • Dino-Frank-Sammy

    In Gremlins 2 he played as the yogurt jerk (small scene.)

  • Greg

    On LATE NIGHT RADIO SHOWS that talk of mysteries and aliens and the like,(Late Night w/George Noory)One popular subject is SHADOW PEOPLE… Jason appeared in the (NEW)TWILIGHT ZONE Episode of SHADOW MAN – which is about that phenomenon! Among his other appearances.

    Jason rules!

  • jessica

    i heard he had a battered childhood?
    he was an amazing actor though!
    how did you know him (did you go to school together)

  • We grew up in the same neighborhood and our parents were also friends.

  • amore e speranza

    i loved that kid back in the 80’s! how’s he doing? any kids? I love your work by the way americanvirus

    good to know he’s doing okay

  • He’s doing good. No kids.

  • jazmine

    Two of my best friends said they went to school with him. is this true? what school did he go to?
    i need to ask them what school it was

  • jazmine

    they could always be joking though. I don’t know

  • I’m pretty sure he went to Pacoima Junior High, but I’m not sure what High School. I hope that helps.

  • jazmine

    I will definitely ask them.

    when child actors shoot a movie do they still go to school – or do they just go when they aren’t filming movies?

    also aren’t there child labor laws. So child actors can’t work for long – do they work for an amount of time, and then go home? sorry I ask a lot of questions.

  • I don’t know what it’s like now, but back then you had a limited number of hours you could work, plus you had a teacher on the set. When you weren’t working, you went to school like everyone else. I’m sure it’s probably the same now.

  • jazmine

    my friends did go to school with him.
    they said he was really shy, but they didn’t really talk to him.

    thanks for your help

  • Julie Waid

    “Explorers” was my favorite movie growing up and it has been a huge influence on my life. I grew up in circumstances very similar to Darren Woods, the character he played in the movie and before that I had never seen someone like me in a movie. I am giving Jason and his fantastic film credit for my growing up to be an author and to do a great deal of things and have a great deal of experiences I would never have had otherwise. So I just want to leave a not here reading: Thank you jason!

  • Wow Julie- that’s fantastic!

  • Miriam

    This reply is really for Jasmine. I wouldn’t say that he had a “battered” life, but his childhood was definitely not easy. He probably doesn’t act anymore because he simply decided he would rather live a simpler life and be happy. Being an actor probably has its ups and down. Believe me. Health and happiness are worth more than most people think.

  • Miriam – wise words.

  • jazmine

    why was his childhood not easy? and if you or Americanvirus know, why was it a such a craze for child actors to do drugs in the 80’s? I have two kids that have cell phones and ipods – they know nothing of corey haim or feldman. I really miss the 80’s.

    Julie – that is amazing

  • This post has the most comments of any of my posts… this really is supposed to be my personal creativity/photography blog… ha ha… but I guess it’s my fault for posting a picture of my friend Jason. I guess if I was a successful enough photographer that I was commissioned to shoot a picture of Brad Pitt or something, the minute I would post it to my personal blog, I’d get a million comments asking questions about Brad & Angelina. None the less, Jason having a troubled childhood? That’s really subjective and I guess would be something you’d have to ask him about. I’m not really his spokesperson. As for kids doing drugs in the 80’s. I would hope that kids today are more educated. They definitely have a lot more interesting things than drugs at their disposal. BTW, I don’t believe Jason ever got into drugs. He was always too smart for that.

  • jazmine

    Your photos are amazing! I didn’t really know many people knew of Jason Presson. None of my friends do anyway. Yeah it is his personal business, and as I read in another comment, you said he is pretty private. Jason should get back into acting, I wouldn’t mind seeing him again.

  • Thanks. I think Jason is a fantastic actor too.

  • craig

    I saw jason for the first time in a long time recently. He is doing well in his career field now, not acting. The death of fellow childhood actor Corey Haim hit home, Jason is good friends with Corey Feldman. He never got into any drugs or anything, if he drinks, its a couple beers. He is very lucky considering the period he is from. It was just good to see him and talk to him again.

  • […] Jason telephoned to say he was in town. Jason Presson is one of my childhood actor buddies (see ~ Jason ~ ). He was in town helping Corey Feldman with his music tour. Mary and I met up with him for pizza […]

  • Bob

    Since no-one has pasted anything in awhile, i figured it was time.

    Jason,was the simply the “coolest” kid around.
    I’m quite happy he is alive and well.
    I was in the music business for much too long, i avoided the
    nonsense of drugs etc. and just the whole music scene was nothing more than an immense pain the butt.
    So i can relate to Jason eventually steering clear of hollywood,and the nonsense that goes with it.
    He is not forgotten by his fans at any rate.
    I believe one of the best moments of my life would be the day i bump into him, shake his hand, and thank him greatly for just
    “being himself”.
    Some call him a legend, he has indeed earned that title and respect.
    Please let him know, he is never forgotten.

  • Stormie

    I just watched the movie Explorers and one called The B.R.A.T. Patrol with Sean Astin. I have to say Jason is a wonderful actor in both movies plus his other ones I’ve seen. He seems very sweet and down to earth. It is a shame he’s not in the acting biz anymore cause he was awesome. I would love to meet him one day. I’m glad to know he’s doing good.

  • sofia

    just wanted everyone to know that ‘explorers’ is streaming on netflix right now. when this movie came out, i was about the same age as jason presson and had the biggest crush on him (or his character in the movie anyway). you know, the brooding type. heh. i’ve always thought he was a terrific actor, and like most folks who commented, wished he was in many more movies. glad to hear he is well. wish he had more of an online presence, but thanks for passing all our messages along. best of luck to you both.

  • bradley

    just wanted to comment. Explorers always reminds of my kid days. guess I was 10 or 11 at the time. anyways. still a fan.still love that movie. wish he would do a cameo in something for us old schoolers. good luck and godspeed regardless.


  • Stormie

    I wish I knew Jason cause he seems very down to earth and very sweet. There’s no way you could set it up where I could meet him…is there?

  • Peejay

    Wow, Jason was my number one crush back when lady in white came out! He seems to have captured many fans through the roles he played. Hope he’s still healthy and happy, whatever he’s doing these days. Please send him best regards.

  • caroline

    While so many of us dream of what could have been- for Mr. Presson as well as his fans had he been the “Ethan Hawke” of Explorers- it’s nice to know that some of the talented actors in Hollywood remove themselves from the negativity that surrounds that lifestyle so they may pursue happiness rather than money and fame.

    It’s funny, really, how much we are affected by what we watch. And, thankfully, I saw Darren Woods as a role model. Quiet but strong, thoughtful, willing to stand up against play ground bullies. No young person can convey the strength, sensitivity and compassion as seen in this character unless he or she embodies these traits. You simply cannot coach these behaviors in one so young.

    Thank you for being one of the good guys, Mr. Presson.

    By the way- the absolutely most adorable of the three boys starring in Explorers- hands down!

  • Chad

    Its awesome to find some sorta updated info on Jason Presson. Glad to hear he is well. I was checking up on him after watching the Explorers again today with my 3 yr old. To comment on the updated Explorer movie post I agree would be nice to have a new one. What I dont agree with is the writers obvious lack of appreciation for Jim Hensons characters and work. My daughter loves the old movie and just about every movie that has Jim Henson characters in it. It goes to show kids and people today dont just have to watch all CGI movies. Some old school real Jim Henson type of characters can and are just as creative and great to watch!

    Thanks again for your Jason post I was having a hardtime finding anysort of recent news on him. And as a fan I like to check in on some of the actors I grew up with.

  • Monika

    I was friends with Jason in the 80s and went to school with him. I moved away in 1985 and lost touch with him. Glad to see he’s doing well. And I love your photography. My 16 year old daughter wants to be a photographer. I plan to show her your pictures.

  • Carlito Z.

    Why his name is hidden away from all the movie plays and so forth? Anyway, I remember when I first saw Explorers (I still do and I’m 31) I wanted a cold Beer after the movie was over. Hahaha.. Which in deed, was granted. It is why now days don’t really like Beer as much. My grandfather make me drink the hole beer at the age of 7 or 8 y/o. Hahaha.. Crazy things I went through. Jason really inspired me to not be afraid, never let others get to yah.and have fun for who you are. Jason still and will always be an Icon to me. Thank you so much for posting a picture and being a true friend. P.S. I got to ride that red coffee cup hundreds of times as a kid and was extremely enjoyble.

  • Alicia Bramblett

    I was scrolling through Netflix and came across the movie Explorers. I called my kids over and told them that I went to school with one of the guys, it was Jason. I went to Pacomia Jr. high for 7th grade and then moved. Jason and I sat next to each other in homeroom and I can’t remember if we had any other classes together. We talked and had some laughs, he even signed my yearbook, and called me “the quiet one”. I did not know him well, but I remember thinking he was a nice guy. I wondered what happened to him and was glad to come across your site. I was looking through my year book and I saw a picture of what I assume is you because it has your name. That is kinda weird.

  • Dawn Glick

    I have been trying to find Jason forever. We were close friends until I introduced him to my friend Heather when I was in college;I miss him tons. Jason was a dear and wonderful friend. I hope he is doing well. If you speak to him, please tell him that Dawn from Pacoima TFA sends her love.

  • thank you for sharing this. i had the biggest crush on him when i was a little girl, i must have watched “explorers”, a hundred times as a kid.

  • First of kudos to the person behind this webpage. Glad to see Jason is getting by…altough he really seemed a very natural skilled actor when young. Can anyone point me out any interview of him about the reasons he got detached from the industry? Fact he´s friend´s with Corey maybe he knows alot about it.
    Interesting to notice that even his name´s often uncredited on movies trivia! Explain me that one.
    Well i´ve seen Explorers…but I´m very glad to see – Jason. He looks happy as he is on it´s own life. I can´t thank him enough…

    kudos to all…

  • Leeza

    I remember seeing him in the 1986 Disney Sunday Movie, “The B.R.A.T. Patrol,” with Sean Astin, Dustin Berkovitz, Dylan Kussman and Nia Long. That movie was like, “The Dukes of Hazzard,” in several ways. A couple weeks later, I saw him in another Disney Sunday Movie, “The Leftovers.” That one also starred Cindy Williams and the late, great John Ritter. Jason also once guest-starred on an episode of, “In the Heat of the Night.” It would be nice if there were reunions between, “The B.R.A.T. Patrol,” and, “The Leftovers.”

  • neogen50

    …explorers is still one of my favs. heartwarming to hear he is one of the good guys. ty for keeping this site real whomever is responsible :)

  • Frances Newsom

    Just watched Explorers again and looked up Jason Presson, I love this guy, Ethan, and of course River (miss you man)
    . Hope Jason and family are doing well in the real world. Thanks, Jason, for being you! You are loved….

  • […] *Jason Presson, the other guy in the movie was my favorite actor of the three, at least during this viewing.   His acting was pretty contained and had the most amazing voice.  Ethan Hawke’s voice was still quite high and really bugged me by the end, but Jason Presson, since you don’t seem to be acting anymore, I hope at least you are a radio DJ or doing something with that great voice.  [one Google search and 10 minutes later, here’s a picture of him from 2008 and a bit about what he’s doing now. https://americanvirus.com/2008/08/americanvirus-30-jason-presson-on-hollywood-boulevard/%5D […]

  • Dan

    Tell Jason in his short time acting he made a big difference as you can tell by all the people writing. His was my favorite characterin Explorers and I never knew why he did not make more movies until now. It is awesome you keep in touch, let him know he still has fans and I hope he looks back on those times fondly.

  • Joy

    Look at his face – I still see that kid I crushed on all those years ago! I’m catching up, rewatching the well worn VHS tapes of my youth and am so glad to see Jason looking well. I wish him all good things. He made my childhood so much more bearable and allowed me my dreams. His acting was insanely good and made such an impact. That sounds so bizarre and overstated, but it’s true. His light keeps shining. Please pass on my thanks and wishes!

  • Who can forget the Disney Sunday Movie: “BRAT Patrol” What a great Jason Presson film as well!!

    Always wondered what happened to him. Hope he’s lovin’ life these days.

  • Linda

    Watched Explorers again tonight and remember how much we liked it back when we first saw it in the 90s by tape I think. we rented the tape. we always remembered it and liked all three actors in it but when I looked up the biographies of each one, I couldn’t find much on Jason and was worried something had happened to him and came across this photo and glad he is doing ok and the way things are today, he probably did the right thing and not get involved more movies. It seems like the kids have a hard time in the Hollywood world of movies. Its sad the ones that have died. i don’t ever believe half of what the media says about them after they died. I’m happy for Jason that he is ok and I don’t think anyone ever forgets him in his movies. He is unforgettable. :)

  • Catherine M Schack

    Very glad to hear that Jason Presson has avoided the dark side of Hollywood. Explorers is one of my favorite movies that I would watch with my 3 sons in the 80’s. To this day it is a lovely shared memory we have and I can’t think of another movie that we can suddenly quote our favorite lines and bring laughter to all of us.

  • Chad

    I had really hoped that he was going to continue his career on the big screen. He always did a great job in his rolls. Its probably good thing since Hollywood has a villinious reputation for distroying good people as well as questionable. I myself will never forget his impact on my childhood. Awesome job Jason. 


Americanvirus is the personal photo blog of photographer Jonas Seaman. His work has appeared on television's The Today Show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and Inside Edition, as well as numerous magazines and blogs from around the world.

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