MEET OUR MENTOR:
Johnny is celebrating 56 years in show business this year. He is an actor, known for Tom Sawyer (1973), The Biscuit Eater (1972) and Sigmund and the Sea Monsters (1973). He is President and Founder of Paso Por Paso, a California 501 (c)3 corporation dedicated to helping Spanish-speaking addicts / alcoholics find treatment and recovery.
His first film, The Russians Are Coming! The Russians Are Coming! (1966) co-starred Brian Keith. He and Keith got along so well that Keith was instrumental in setting him up for an interview with the producers of Family Affair (1966), in which he was eventually cast as Keith's nephew.
He was the only six-year-old who screen-tested for the role of Jody Davis in Family Affair (1966), which originally was supposed to be for a ten-year-old boy, but when the producers saw the chemistry between he and Anissa Jones (Buffy), they promptly rewrote the parts for six-year-old twins.
He gave Jodie Foster her first on-screen kiss in Tom Sawyer (1973). Co-starred with young Jodie Foster twice in films. The first time was in Disney's Napoleon and Samantha (1972), and then she played Becky Thatcher to his Tom Sawyer (1973). He made national tours for the "Tom Sawyer" line of boys' clothing after being cast in the the musical film. Eventually the same firm put out a "Johnnie Whitaker" line as well.
Speaks several languages fluently, including Portuguese, Spanish, French and American Sign Language.
In 1999 he received the Former Child Star Lifetime Achievement Award at the Young Artist Awards.