Leo Howard Breaks Record for Youngest TV Director

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Leo Howard

The 16-year-old actor, who stars in Disney XD's "Kickin' It," was recently certified by the Guinness Book of World Records.

From David Boreanaz on Bones and Chandra Wilson on Grey’s Anatomy to John Slattery on Mad Men, networks regularly indulge their stars’ desire tostep behind the camera to direct episodes of their shows. But how about obliging a 16-year-old actor?

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Leo Howard, who plays lead karate kid Jack Brewer in Disney XD’s martial arts comedy Kickin’ It, now in its fourth season, was recently certified by the Guinness Book of World Records as the youngest TV director ever for his work on the episode “Fight at the Museum,” airing June 30. 

“Somebody said, ‘I bet we have a Guinness here.’ So my mom became in charge of that. And when it came through, it struck reality. It was an awesome bonus,” he said.

“I knew people would be looking at me and thinking, that kid, so I just kept my head down -- focused on the camera-blocking and what the actors needed,” added Howard, who has spent the past two seasons preparing by shadowing the show’s other directors.

Executive producer Jim O’Doherty was impressed by the rookie’s assured professionalism: “He’s like a wolf in a really good way. In his eyes you can see he’s digesting information in a different way. He was so prepared. I think we finished a half-hour early. It was his first time, and he called it half an hour early!” Paging Fred Savage.