Between his movie Agent Cody Banks and turning 18, Frankie Muniz is in the middle of an exciting year! He took some time out to talk to IML about girls, sports, and some pretty big dreams.
IML: When you see a girl you have a crush on, are you more skilled at talking to her than Cody Banks?
Frankie: Not at all! I'm probably less skilled. In the movie, Cody Banks actually went up to Hilary's character and talked to her. If it were really me, I'd sit in the corner and stare. I'm just afraid to go up to girls for some reason. The few girls I have gone up and talked to have said. "Oh my God! Frankie Muniz, Malcolm, can I have a picture?" and it kind of ruins the whole thing there. It's kind of easier if I get introduced from a friend and then I can talk to them.
IML: You've said that most of your friends are girls. What are the upsides and the downsides to opposite sex friendships?
Frankie: I talk a lot for a teenage boy whereas most guys think they're too cool. I like talking to people and that's actually what I look for in a girl: somebody who can talk back to me. I guess that's why I like talking to girls. They're into just talking rather than, "Let's just go here and let's go to this party and hang out." I'm not into that at all.
IML: What quality in a girl is most important to you?
Frankie: I know everyone says this, but I've never liked someone just for looks at all, and that's what I love about my girlfriend…she's very herself and different. She doesn't care about the way she dresses. She has her own style and I like that, you know. I like people who know who they are, and don't follow other people.
IML: Do you have a most embarrassing moment story about a girl?
Frankie: I was playing basketball outside the Malcolm In the Middle set and there were a lot of people who were filming on Bernie Mac because they film right next to us. I was playing basketball with a bunch of them. We had a contest on who could shoot the ball from the furthest. I went first and then another kid went. Then I went, "I'll shoot it from here." I shot it and I completely fell flat on my face! Everyone started laughing. I wasn't embarrassed but I thought, "How did I fall?" I got up and I was going to go to my dressing room…and I ran and I fell again! It was embarrassing that time because everyone was now really laughing. That was my most embarrassing moment that I can remember. There were a lot of girls watching. There was another time when I slipped on water. I jumped and I tried to touch the top of the door and I came down and there was water and I slipped like that. I ended up going to hospital that night and I had a mild concussion but hey, it's cool!
IML: Who is your role model?
Frankie: John Mayer. I'm obsessed with John Mayer. I'm watching his DVD in my room. It's on right now. Everyone's imitations of him are mean. I think John Mayer is amazing and I've gotten to meet him and hang out with him. He's awesome and this is the first time I'm not wearing a John Mayer shirt and carrying my John Mayer wallet in my pocket. I introduced Hilary Duff to John Mayer and now she has a crush on him. He's mine.
IML: I heard you like music a lot. What does music mean to you?
Frankie: Me and my friends have just started playing music a lot. I'm a big drummer and all of my friends play guitar and piano. It's the most relaxing and relieving thing to jam and just go. We went last night for an hour nonstop with no break at all, just playing, and that's so fun. I love listening to old music that reminds you of a certain time. For example, when I was in Vancouver shooting this movie, I have all the CD's that I listened to there. I listen to them now and it just reminds me of that and filming the movie and I just love that. It makes you feel so good. Music is great. Every song you listen to that you've heard before, you have a memory of that song or it makes you think about something and I love going back to those things.
IML: Do you have a fave sport?
Frankie: Yes! Basketball is my sport. I love basketball. Basketball, driving. and acting is all I do. I play in a league and I'm obsessed with the Clippers. I always go to the games. I've actually gotten really serious about playing basketball and I've actually had a few colleges say stuff.
IML: Would you consider playing basketball professionally?
Frankie: In a second. Me and Li'l Bow Wow were just talking about it because he wants to be in the NBA too. We always play in the charity games together and against each other. He said, "Dude, I'd do anything to get into the NBA." I said, "Dude, I'd do anything to get into any professional basketball league. Not even just the NBA." I just love basketball, it's fun. I just played at the All Star game and the league I play in is sponsored by the NBA, so a lot of the players and coaches come out.
IML: Did you do any of the snowboarding or stunts in Agent Cody Banks?
Frankie: I did pretty much all the stunts except for the snowboarding and some of the skateboarding. All of the fighting was me, except for the flips. I wanted to do, or tried to do, everything. I hate when they show the person fighting and they cut real far away so you can't see the person. For me, even when they cut away you can still see it's me most of the time. The flips I can't do just because I didn't want to break my neck. Other than that, I tried to do as much as possible. Part of the fun is getting to learn how to do all that stuff!
IML: We heard a rumor that your stunt double was a girl…is that true?
Frankie: No! Angie Harmon's stunt double for all of the fighting scenes was a Chinese guy, which was odd because you see this guy dressed up as Angie! I had a guy named Lee Whitaker and he was the coolest guy in Canada.
IML: How did you like doing the James Bond thing in Agent Cody Banks?
Frankie: It's every teenager's dream to get to be an action hero. I like to be able to say that I am! It was very exciting. I had an awesome time making the movie and I got to start lifting and I gained about 30 pounds of muscle and I took martial arts training. I've lost all of it now because it's been about a year, but it was very cool.
IML: You've done mostly comedies in your career so far. Would you like to do more serious roles in the future?
Frankie: I don't want to just be a comedian or be in funny movies. I want to do dramatic movies too. The only problem now is the few dramatic movies I have lined up to do, they can't get together in time. Right now the movies I'm going to do this summer are all comedies, which I like to do but I would like to do a more serious drama, so we'll see.
IML: Do you keep in touch with people back home in New Jersey?
Frankie: Not really. I always used to and slowly everyone changes. It's weird to go back now because everyone has changed so much. I don't know who to hang out with anymore because I don't recognize them. They're so much taller.
IML: What would people be most surprised to learn about you?
Frankie: My beard is growing in (just kidding!). I consider myself completely normal. I don't know if people consider me weird, but I don't see myself as "Frankie Muniz the celebrity."
IML: Where do you see yourself 10 years from now?
Frankie: Well, I can't wait to grow up. People are always asking, "How are you going to make that transition to becoming an adult actor?" Well in 8 months, when I turn 18, I'm going to become a legal adult. If I'm acting, doesn't that make me an adult actor? If I just continue doing what I'm doing, I think everything will work out and be alright. I'm going to be doing dramas and stuff like that. I would love to do it for as long as I can, but that's the one thing about acting and that's why I don't take any breaks, because you never know when it's not going to be there. You never know when you're not going to be wanted anymore. So that's why I'm trying to do as much as I can, while I can. I've got a thousand other
things I'd like to do as well, like racing cars or
playing basketball in the NBA.
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