'Puzzle time' kid loving fame

NO JOKE: Cameron Carter-Chan, 11, understands the importance of the message behind the comedy.
NO JOKE: Cameron Carter-Chan, 11, understands the importance of the message behind the comedy.

The 'puzzle time' actor from a popular anti-drink driving advertisement has told of life as a playground celebrity.

Cameron Carter-Chan, 11, landed the bit-part role in the "ghost chips" advertisement and said he's now famous for his one-liner, "puzzle time".

"It's really awesome. I get recognised at school, at the mall, at dance competitions," he said.

"I can't walk around without someone noticing me and asking me to say it.

"At Christmas in the Park these girls came up to me and said 'are you the puzzle time guy?' and I said 'yep' and they ran off squealing. My best friend was walking around like 'yep, this is the puzzle time guy and he's hanging out with me'. It's really cool.''

The Sancta Maria Catholic College student said initially his character wasn't supposed to have a line in the New Zealand Transport Agency's Legend campaign, which is being credited with helping lower the road toll.

"My agent told me there was an audition for a creative Maori ad about drinking and driving,'' he said.

"At first I wasn't supposed to say anything but then they thought maybe there should be more comedy so they got me to say the line 'puzzle time'.''

Filming the advertisement was a lot of fun for Carter-Chan, but its all-important message wasn't lost on him.

"This is what happens,'' he said.

 "Teenagers go to parties with their mates and they get wasted and then some of them drive. Some people don't seem to care but using comedy to talk about the consequences of drinking and driving in this way really seems to be getting the message across. It was pretty cool to be part of it.''

Having had a taste of celebrity, Carter-Chan is now eyeing Hollywood.

"I think it (acting) is what I want to do. I'd like to learn how to act professionally so I can get into movies and be more of a drama person. It's such a great experience and even when you go to an audition and you don't get picked you still learn stuff and you can do it again," he said.

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