Jason Presson

Jason Presson (born August 31, 1971) is a former American child actor, best known for his role of Darren in the 1985 movie Explorers,[1] alongside Ethan Hawke and River Phoenix.

Jason Presson
Born (1971-08-31) August 31, 1971 (age 49)
Years active1983–1997


His debut came in 1984 with the film The Stone Boy performing with Robert Duvall and Glenn Close. The following year, he was selected to play Darren Woods in Joe Dante's big budget movie, Explorers, with Ethan Hawke and River Phoenix. This movie was not a blockbuster, but earned nominations to the three protagonists at the Young Artist Award in the category for 'Best Young Actor'. The winner was his co-star and friend River Phoenix.[citation needed] Dante liked Presson's performance and subsequently cast him in a similar role in "The Shadow Man", a Twilight Zone segment which Dante directed.[2]

In 1990, he had a minor role in the movie Gremlins 2: The New Batch, returning to work with the director Joe Dante after five years. His last role was on the TV series In the Heat of the Night as Jimmy Miller.


Year Title Role Notes
1983 Wishman Bruce Kaleb TV movie
1984 The Stone Boy Arnold Hillerman
1984 Invitation to Hell Billy main character
1984 Trapper John, M.D. Jamie Bruce Episode: "A Change of Heart"
1984 Finder of Lost Loves Jonathan Hodges Episode: "White Lies"
1985 Explorers Darren Woods
1985 Webster Frank Episode: "Who's to Blame?"
1985 The Twilight Zone Eric Segment: "The Shadow Man"
1986 The Wonderful World of Disney: The Leftovers Charlie 1 episode
1986 The Wonderful World of Disney: The B.R.A.T. Patrol Raymond McGeorge 1 episode
1988 Lady in White Geno Scarlatti
1988 Saturday the 14th Strikes Back Eddie Baxter
1989 I Know My First Name Is Steven Deke
1990 Gremlins 2: The New Batch Alex the Yogurt Jerk
1990 Room for Romance 1 episode
1991 Never Forget Bernie Mermelstein TV movie
1991 Rugrats Ramone "Rocko" 1 episode
1991 In the Heat of the Night Jimmy Miller 1 episode


  1. ^ "THE SCREEN: 'EXPLORERS'". The New York Times. Retrieved June 5, 2012.
  2. ^ Alexander, Chris (November 5, 2015). "Interview: Joe Dante Reflects on '80's Twilight Zone Episode, 'The Shadow Man'".

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