Sharknado 3 airs Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET

By Emily Zauzmer
Updated December 01, 2020 10:10 PM
Credit: Lily Lawrence/Getty

Ian Ziering‘s daughter, 2-year-old Penna Mae, has been swept up in the storm of Sharknado fandom.

“She doesn’t even know what the movie is, but Sharknado is the first three-syllable word she’s ever said,” Ziering – the star of the megahit franchise, which airs its third installment Wednesday night – tells PEOPLE.

Although Penna Mae has not seen the films, she has gotten a taste of her father’s celebrity.

“I had her down at Comic-Con. She saw the lunacy that takes place down there,” says Ziering, 51. “Everyone was dressed as sharks or had some type of Sharknado paraphernalia on them. She had her flag, and she had her Wonder Woman shirt on. She kind of gets it. She kind of does.”

Penna Mae is not the only Ziering kid to enjoy the fun of Sharknado, which he calls a “genre-creating phenomenon.” His older daughter, 4-year-old Mia Loren, spotted a snippet of her dad in character on the news two years ago and became wrapped up in the scene.

“She was mesmerized,” Ziering recalls. “She saw me chain-sawing my way out from the belly of the shark, and she says, ‘Oh Daddy, I’m so glad you’re okay!'”

Penna Mae and Mia Loren, Ziering’s children with wife Erin, are so supportive of their father that they have put the word Sharknado to music. Ziering posted an adorable clip on Facebook of his children singing about the series.

Luckily for his daughters – and for viewers – Ziering is soundly on board if SyFy orders a fourth film.

“Do you think Tom Cruise would be up for another Mission: Impossible movie?” Ziering asks rhetorically. “These are so fun. I’m playing an action hero in a science fiction movie. For me, this is a cross between two genres that I have always loved.”

Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! premieres Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET on Syfy.