Born on Valentine’s Day in 1987, the fourth of five children, Pichler was a precocious child. He expressed an interest in acting when he was just four, after seeing the Oscars on TV. A year later he snagged a part in a commercial. His family subsequently relocated from Bremerton, Washington, to Los Angeles and he started landing bigger roles after that.
“[Pichler] had such a charm,” Jesse Plemons told People magazine in May 2009. Plemons, who played Todd Alquist in Breaking Bad and appeared alongside Pichler in Children on Their Birthdays, was a close pal. “He knew the names of everyone on the crew, took time to get to know them, and he was everyone’s friend,” Plemons said.
Despite his promising career, Pichler left Los Angeles and returned to his hometown of Bremerton in 2002, in order to complete his high school education. According to his mother Kathy, Joseph was “heartbroken” about the move. But both she and her husband John agreed to let him to return to California once he’d graduated.