For Jack Champion, there was no easing into the whole acting thing. At just age 12, Champion struck gold when he landed a major role in Avatar: The Way of Water. Now, six years later, on the eve of the film’s release and his 18th birthday, Champion reminisces with pride. “It’s really not that hard for a kid to pretend to be the character,” he says. “It’s no different from playing with your friends on a playground but, you know, professionally.”

Whether it be perfecting Navy Seal freediving techniques in the first month on set or forming familial bonds with Hollywood A-listers Sigourney Weaver and Stephen Lang, Avatar wasn’t exactly a shallow entry for Champion. Still, he worked hard to keep a normal life; he attended his high school prom and hit the landmarks of growing up like a “normal” kid. “I wasn’t famous, so it didn’t get weird,” he says. “I was still Jack and hanging out with friends.” But, at the same time, “My teenage years were spent with 30-year-olds,” he continues. “I feel like an old soul sometimes.”

As he grows into this sentiment, Champion is leaving behind motion-capture suits for Scream 6 and his swooshing Bieber cut for his natural curls. Taking the lessons learned from his sudden immersion into the acting world with him, he has a skill set—and a toolbox of experiences and friends—to push forward with.

This story appears in the pages of MINI V: The Premiere Issue, now available for purchase!

Photography Tyrell Hampton

Fashion Michael Vasquez      

Makeup Holly Silius

Hair Lauren Palmer Smith

Editors Kevin Ponce / Dania Curvy

Photo assistant Khalilah Pianta

Production Photobomb

Discover More