Posted on August 20, 2018
Chris Pratt reprises his role as raptor trainer Owen Grady in “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom” — and the leading man’s fans know he’s a hero in real life, too.
Before the much-anticipated sequel stomps into theaters, Pratt staged a very special surprise for some young viewers. The guests of honor, 245 kids and chaperones from The Boys and Girls Clubs of America, showed up at New York City's Empire Theatre for an early viewing of the summer blockbuster Thursday evening, hosted by TODAY and Universal Pictures. What they didn’t know was that the 38-year-old actor would make an appearance. Before the screening started, a handful of young actors were challenged to give their fiercest “scared by a dinosaur” impressions. To the kids’ delight, the final "contestant" was none other than Pratt himself!
Pratt stepped onstage and offered the kids some words of advice: "If you stick to who you are, one day you can grow up and life can get really, really good for you. So just stay true to yourself."
“I feel so incredibly lucky in my life,” Pratt told TODAY after the surprise, explaining why spending time with young fans is important to him.
Pratt has a connection to the group: The actor raised money to fund a teen rec center for the local Boys and Girls Club in his hometown of Lake Stevens, Washington — a new facility that opened last fall.
"I think it's important because it's a safe place for youth to hang out, spend time with one another," he said. "It's hard raising kids and it's hard to be present all the time. It really takes a village. So I think the Boys and Girls Clubs act as that village sometimes and can watch our kids when parents are off at work. It's just an extra set of eyes and ears you can trust for your kids to be around."