It’s a great year for offbeat, hilarious sitcom kids, thanks in no small part to Bert, the youngest child on ABC’s Trophy Wife. Bert is played by Albert Tsai, who, like his character, enjoys Iron Man and candy; unlike his character, Albert has a healthy respect for bedtimes. Vulture spoke with Albert on the phone about his first major TV job.
Albert: Hi Amanda! How are you?
I’m good, thank you! How are you?
Where are you right now?
I’m in my trailer on set.
So you didn’t have school today?
I’m in online school.
What’s your favorite subject?
My favorite subjects are history and social studies.
What are you studying in history right now?
My school only does California state history, so right now I’m studying the California Gold Rush.
You’re 9 years old, right? Did you just turn 9, or have you been 9 for a while?
I just turned 9 in August.
Did you have a birthday party?
I did. I celebrated with my parents and my agents and my manager and some friends.
Is this your first professional acting job?
This is my first major TV show, but I had a co-star role on How I Met Your Mother. And then I had a school play.
What was your school play?
It was called The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley Junior. I was Doctor Dan. He’s a funny doctor who’s hard of hearing, so he sometimes mixed up words. He mixed up Mrs. Lambchop to become Mrs. Porkchop.
What’s been your favorite scene on Trophy Wife so far?
In the third episode, where I got to help my TV mom Jackie’s jewelry business. I also got to learn Yiddish for that episode, which was very fun.
Do you use Yiddish at home now?
Umm … I do sometimes.
What was your favorite Yiddish word?
I really liked oy vey.
That’s a very useful one! What are some of your other favorite TV shows, besides Trophy Wife?
I really like the Disney Channel. I like Austin & Ally, and Good Luck Charlie, and Jessie.
I know you were Iron Man for Halloween on Trophy Wife. Did you dress up in real life?
Yes, I actually dressed up as Iron Man.
You did? Did you wear the same costume, or did you have your own?
I borrowed that costume from set, and one of the grip guys gave me this really cool light-up wire, that when you pressed a button on the remote connecting to it, it would light up.
And one of the wardrobe girls helped me sew it onto the Iron Man costume where the light was supposed to be. So it actually lit up in the night.
Did you get a lot of candy?
I got a lot of candy, and I even got one Twix — the king size one.
Ohhh, that’s always the best. Have you eaten all your candy yet?
I’m saving it. I ate one piece.
Only one piece? It’s been a week since Halloween!
Well, I ate one piece at night when I came home, since it was pretty late and I didn’t want to eat too much candy in the night.
That’s very smart. Because then it’s hard to go to sleep.
Yeah. But when I got home my legs were actually aching. I walked a lot around the neighborhood.
What else do you like to do when you’re not at work or school?
I really like to read all different types of books. Especially history books and biographies.
What’s the last biography you read?
It was a biography of Walt Disney. It was really good, and I admire him for building a really big entertainment business that brings people happiness.
So now that you’ve been a professional actor for a little while, do you think that you want to be one when you grow up?
I might be a professional actor, but I also want to be a businessman. I would like to build a business that can bring people happiness, like Walt Disney.