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Interview: The Cast of Disney’s “Better Nate Than Ever”

Disney’s Better Nate Than Ever allows us to dream big as Nate Foster finds himself on a bus to New York City. Along the way, Nate runs into obstacles, but through the love from his family and friends, he is able to find confidence to star on Broadway. Based on the book by Tim Federle, this movie adaptation is one of Disney’s most inspirational films to date.

Here’s the scoop on the cast of Better Nate Than Ever!

Stream Better Nate Than Ever on Disney+ April 1st!

The Cast of Better Nate Than Ever

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Tim Federle is an American actor, director, and writer that was the mastermind behind Better Nate Than Ever. His known works include High School Musical: The Series and Sister Act 3.

Rueby Wood plays the dorky main character, Nate Foster who dreams of becoming a Broadway star. Although Rueby hasn’t been in any major films besides Better Nate Than Ever, he is well known in New York for his role in Mary Poppins and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

Aria Brooks is the actress behind the bold character, Libby who encourages Nate to go after his dreams. Aria is not new to the movie scene with her roles in Black Widow and Harriet.

Joshua Bassett plays Nate’s older brother, Anthony, in this Disney movie. Joshua is a singer and actor with his most well-known role as Ricky Bowen in High School Musical: The Musical.

Lisa Kudrow appears as Aunt Heidi in Better Nate Than Ever and is famous for her role in the sitcom, Friends. Lisa is also a writer, producer, and comedian.

Film Adaptation

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Tim Federle gives his thoughts on creating his first feature film based on his book. “It’s a dream come true. I mean, my background was really as a theater kid from Pittsburgh, who dreamed of kind of getting out of my hometown and dancing on Broadway. I never really dreamed of turning it into a movie, and I think the amazing thing about sort of growing up is it never stops happening if you surround yourself with people who allow you to dream. And, this cast, brought the movie to life in a way I could only imagine.”

Character Roles

libby and nate
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Rueby expresses his thoughts of participating in the lead role. “I’m so honored and excited to be able to portray this incredible role and be in this movie because it was just so amazing.” Rueby also describes his character Nate as “a force.” “He wants to be himself, and the whole story is about him learning how to be himself and who he is. And I feel like that’s really magical and really important.”

Aria Brooks is next to talk about her character by saying, “I love Libby. I love getting to play her. Her, certain attitude about life and her comebacks, just the way she lives her life, I feel like is similar to me. I think she’s different from a lot of other roles that I’ve played. Just this experience of getting to know Libby, like partially recreating her and creating her personality, has been very different from past roles just being that support system for Nate, that was a big thing throughout the movie for her.”

Joshua Bassett expresses his thoughts on Anthony and working together with the other actors on the set of Better Nate Than Ever. ” It was an honor to sort of work with him on figuring out who Anthony is and just again, like, being the vehicle for this beautiful story. Every step of the way was a joy.”

Lisa Kudrow is last to express her excitement for her character. “Heidi is Nate’s aunt and sort of estranged from the family. And, you know, she got to be in a Broadway show that only went for three weeks but just stayed to keep going ’cause it’s like golf. You hit one good shot, and, you know, you’re addicted. That’s not fair. If you want to perform, that’s what you want to do.”


nate foster
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Since Tim Federle is the scriptwriter behind Better Nate Than Ever, he describes some of the memories that he had to include in the script. “Well, I used to take the bus when I was a teenager from Pittsburgh. I would take a Greyhound bus after school at night. I don’t know why my parents let me do this. And I would take the bus, and then I would go to an audition the next morning. So, I’d take the bus, 10-hour bus trip. I’d walk to the audition. I auditioned for Radio City.”

Dream Big

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Better Nate Than Ever has so many lovable characters that make the movie inspiring for both younger and older audiences. Lisa, Joshua, and Aria go more in-depth with their character’s support for Nate throughout the movie. Joshua describes his character by saying, “I think Anthony definitely needs to
be cool. And also, just having a younger sibling that he’s protective of but also embarrassed of is an
interesting nuance to play.” We can see just how much Anthony’s support helped in Nate’s dream.

Lisa expresses her thoughts on Nate’s aunt as a woman living in New York. “I just like that she also had this arc of priorities, learning what the priorities are, not having those priorities made her a little more lonely and less happy in her life.” Aria comments about her character Libby being the one that encourages Nate to audition on Broadway by saying, “I thought it was really inspiring how Tim wrote it because usually, in those coming-of-age movies, it’s the main character trying to figure themself out.”

What Audiences Need to Know

anthony and heidi
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Better Nate Than Ever is a heartwarming story of a boy who doesn’t let judgment from others hinder his dream. It’s always important to have a support system whether you want to be a Broadway star or an influencer. This Disney movie is not only inspirational but offers plenty of hilarious quotes for a touching masterpiece.

Watch Better Nate Than Ever on Disney+ April 1st!

For the scoop on more Disney movies, check out these articles:

better nate than ever interview

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