Disney Channel stars Ava Kolker and Jackson Dollinger are “proud” to be a part of Sydney to the Maxthey tell J-14 exclusively.

Amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Ava, 14, explains that it was “difficult” to shoot as “adding all these precautions” added to her daily stress. But all in all, the actress is “really proud of us as a cast, that we were able to make it through this pandemic.”

Jackson, 14, for his part, echoes her sentiment before both stars note that their show is special because they “touch on the controversial topics that some Disney shows might not.”

“This season was really bold and really relatable. We touched on so many important and raw and, like, just really relatable topics that I think is so important, especially on a Disney show because a lot of it is just like, ‘Ah, fun. Yay.’ But that wasn’t this season at all. … That’s something that I absolutely adore about our show, is that as a kid watching it, you really take important lessons and morals away from it. I’m really proud of us,” Ava gushes. Jackson adds, “I think in today’s world, that’s really important and I’m glad we have the chance to do that.”

Disney Channel Announces ’Sydney to the Max’ Season 3 Premiere Date: What We KnowDisney Channel/Mitch Haaseth
Disney Channel/Mitch Haaseth

When discussing their favorite episodes from season 3, Jackson recalls one moment when “Alicia teaches Max how to roller skate.”

“You get to really see their connection and it shows, you know, that teenage love and that they’re starting to fall in love, and why they get married in the present day,” he explains.

Ava has a special place in her heart for the “divorce episode” — which premieres on Friday, June 4 — and upcoming “bat mitzvah episode.” In the episode, titled “What’s Eating Olive Rozalski?” both present day characters and the ’90s characters are dealing with the fallout of their parents’ breakups.

“Olive’s parents are going through a divorce and I think she’s definitely in denial for a while, and not really accepting the fact and kind of just putting it aside and distracting herself, which is totally understandable,” the actress teases, noting that viewers will get to see “the process” of her character “working through” and accepting her parents’ split. “I think that’s really important to show the kids that they’re not alone,” she adds.

Meanwhile in the ’90s, Jackson says his character, Max, and Alicia cook dinner for their families “in hopes that they’ll get back together.”

“Ultimately, Max realizes that even though his parents aren’t still in a relationship, they can still be friends,” he adds. “They can still work together raising Max. Even though they’re not together and they don’t live together, they still love each other very much.”

Be sure to watch Ava and Jackson’s full interview above and check out new episodes of Sydney to the Max on Disney Channel on Fridays at 8:25 p.m. ET/PT. 

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