Melissa Joan Hart’s roles in Sabrina the Teenage Witch and Clarissa Explains It All are still beloved today — to everyone but the actress’ three sons: Mason, Braydon and Tucker.
“They want nothing to do with it,” Hart, 47, exclusively told Us Weekly on Tuesday, November 28, while discussing her partnership with World Vision and its annual holiday gift catalog. “They think it’s weird. And you know what, I kind of get that. They’re like, ‘It’s just weird. I don’t want to watch you on TV and I don’t want to watch you kiss another man in a Christmas movie.’”
Hart rose to fame in 1991 playing the titular character on Nickelodeon’s Clarissa Explains It All for five seasons. She later played the bewitching Sabrina Spellman on ABC’s Sabrina the Teenage Witch until 2003. Since then, Hart has also become a staple in made-for-TV holiday movies.
In addition to her acting career, Hart is a doting mom to sons Mason, 17, Braydon, 15, and Tucker, 11, whom she shares with husband Mark Wilkerson. While her boys are unimpressed by her career now, Hart thinks that they will eventually come around to the idea of watching her past projects.
“It’s a little weird to see people out of context the way you know them,” she told Us, comparing it to watching her real-life best friends act in movies. “I think they will someday, especially, to be honest, my son has a friend named Sabrina right now, so she’s around a lot recently and it’s all very weird.”
Hart and Wilkerson’s kids also don’t plan to follow in their mom’s Hollywood footsteps.
“We don’t really have them in the industry. I don’t love the idea of having to drive them to auditions [and dealing with] the rejection,” she explained on Tuesday. “I mean, I think the rejection would be good for them in a way [to] keep them from being too spoiled, but no mommy wants their baby to go through rejection.”
She added: “And to be honest, I don’t want to drive them around to all these [auditions]. I have a hard enough time making them eat their eggs in the morning and clean up their room, let alone [try to get them to] learn your lines, put on this outfit, let’s go to this audition. And they’re not into it. If they were really into it, I would do it, but they’re really not.”
In addition to raising her boys out of the limelight, Hart has taught them the importance of giving back through her World Vision partnership.
“I partnered with them in 2019. [Since] we have three boys, we sponsored three girls with World Vision,” Hart explained. “We got the opportunity twice now to go to Zambia and visit them. This summer we did this big trip with our family, with all three of our boys and introduced them to their ‘sponsor sisters’ as we call them, and just got the chance to see all of this work that World Vision does. It’s so complex, it’s so sustainable, it’s so amazing and I am so proud to be an ambassador for them and be able to share all the work they do.”
For the holiday season, World Vision launched its annual gift catalog, where each purchase goes toward helping the nonprofit’s operating costs. Individuals can also donate necessary items to areas in Central America, South America, Africa and more.
“And one of the things that I have in there is the Beads of Blessing, which is this bracelet that was made by artisans in Africa and it’s in the gift catalog,” she said. “You can gift this to someone, a teacher, a mother, whatever, and then the money will go to help the projects that World Vision does.”
With reporting by Christina Garibaldi