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Frankie Muniz Actor

Frankie Muniz

At a young age Frankie showed a talent for acting and soon had parts in several theatre productions including A Christmas Carol, The Sound Of Music, The Wizard Of Oz and Our Town. He continued to act throughout his childhood years appearing on TV shows and movies. But it was not until age 13 when Frankie got the title role in Malcolm in the Middle that he shot to stardom. The first episode of Malcolm in the Middle aired in the US on the 9th January 2000, and was watched by 23 million people, followed by a massive 26 million viewers the next week. In 2001, Frankie was nominated for a Golden Globe Award in the category of best actor in a TV series- musical or comedy, against men two to three times his age! And he has never taken an acting lesson in his life! Frankie has done voice-over work on The Simpsons and played a baby bear cub in Doctor Dolittle 2. He has had major roles in the feature films My Dog Skip, What the deaf man heard, and most recently Big Fat Liar. Big Fat Liar made about $50 million dollars at the US Box Office. Frankie (Francisco Muniz IV) was born on the 5th December 1985, in Woodridge NJ. He lives with his mother and his older sister Christina in LA. Frankie enjoys golf, basketball and music. He has been playing golf since he was 5 and has a 13 handicap. He's also a keen drummer and would like to own the L.A Clippers basketball team one day. For his 16th birthday Frankie bought the car from the movie The Fast and the Furious. Complete with a Playstation 2, TV, VCR and DVD player and more! In the future Frankie would like to continue acting, though in the long-term future he would like to concentrate on his movie career. He would also like to have a go at producing and is thinking of the possibility of creating his own production company.

 

Frankie Muniz: Winning the Race

Is that Frankie Muniz’ voice I hear coming out of that little zebra? Yep. Muniz is the voice of Stripes in the new talking animal film Racing Stripes. He’s rubbing hooves/paws with some greats; Dustin Hoffman, Whoopi Goldberg and Snoop Dogg. Of course, Frankie was rarely if ever in the same room with them and they are a Shetland pony, a goat and a bloodhound. That’s voice/over work for ya.

19-year-old Frankie, of “Malcolm in the Middle” fame, enjoys animated and talking critter films and was happy to lend his voice to make Stripes, a zebra who wants to be a race horse, come to life. When we chatted with Frankie recently in Beverly Hills, we noted that his bright blue eyes really light up the room. They are really big and sparkly.

Animals in Racing Stripes
Credit: Warner Bros.
The upbeat actor was happy to talk about Stripes, “Malcolm”, his car fetish and his plans to carefully choose his next projects so that he can make a smooth transition from kid to adult actor. In purple t-shirt, topped with a stylish black shirt with small violet stripes, Frankie hit that casual Fridays kind of vibe right on center.TeenHollywood: You've done voiceovers before. Was this different for you?

Frankie: I played a baby bear and Mandy Moore was my sister. I love doing the animated stuff. It seemed like a great idea and I knew there was going to be a great cast. I love the Doctor Dolittle movies and Babe. Those were some of my favorite movies growing up. So I thought it would be fun and I had a good time.

TeenHollywood: How about playing a zebra? Did you know what he would look like?

Frankie: I started doing my voiceover stuff like four months before they even started filming the movie. I had no idea how anything was going to look. It's kind of hard to guess. They videotaped my mouth to try and match the animation to my mouth. I did it how I thought it should be and it turned out good. I went back to do the final (voiceover) once the movie was cut together and got to know the other actors by name. That was part of the fun because I had to go in a bunch of times to re-do scenes because after the other actors would go in, they'd change lines or ad-lib so I had to react different. I've worked with great actors in this movie but have never met any of them. (laughs) Seeing it cut together, all the scenes turned out pretty well, I think.
TeenHollywood: Was this easier than doing a live-action movie during your time off from the T.V. show?

Frankie: Definitely. I worked on this movie for two years but maybe for eight days. I had a fun time. It's always cool. I can go in in my pajamas! You get to play around with it and not worry as much about being on camera. Seeing the movie after reading the script and saying my lines, it's awesome. That's the cool thing about animation, you go in and hear your voice do a different character.

TeenHollywood: Did you get excited about being in a movie with classic actor Dustin Hoffman?

Frankie: It's so funny because people say oh, you worked with Whoopi Goldberg and all these people, and I say actually, I've never met them. They had me go in for one session with Dustin Hoffman. Thirty minutes. There's one scene where we have a lot of back and forth. You have to have the actor there to get into it. It's hard to say the lines without getting a reaction. You get used to it. That was the last session we did. They wanted it to be more intense, more real. So they had him come in with me and we did it together. I was very intimidated at first. He's a very respected actor and I'm just me, doing what I do, hoping it was Ok. But he was really nice and we worked well together and it went real fast.

TeenHollywood: Did you get ever get to visit with any of the animals?
Frankie: No. I went to the first two of my recording in London, then they went to South Africa and filmed the movie and then six months later, I went in (and recorded) again. I wish I did (hang out with the animals) because I love animals. I saw the behind the scenes footage. It looked like a fun set. I went to a zoo in Australia and they let me feed all the animals but they wouldn't let me touch the zebras because (they said) they're really mean animals. I knew they were going to film zebras and was wondering how they were going to get Hayden to ride the zebra, but it looked good.
TeenHollywood: Hayden was a guest star on your show?
Frankie: Right. She was an episode about three years ago and I didn't know that she was working on this movie until I saw a cut and she looked great. She was in another episode this season.
TeenHollywood: The producers did your movie My Dog Skip. Is that how they brought you in?


Frankie: Yes,I have a great relationship with them.
They're friends of mine. They came to me with it and I thought it would be a good idea. I didn't want to just anything but I thought this would be fun.
TeenHollywood: I thought you were going to be in the movie. Do you think some kids will be disappointed you're not actually in the movie?

Frankie: A son of one of the crewmembers on “Malcolm in the Middle” came up to me and said ‘what's it like to be a zebra’? They hear my voice coming from the zebra's mouth.

TeenHollywood: Are you careful about what projects you take on?
Frankie: Yes. Especially now that I'm 19. The reason why I didn't do movies this past summer is because I want to take the right decision; do something more dramatic, something different from what I've done before. You have to be cautious. You can't go out and do everything and anything that's there. I'm actually going through a time (in my career) that's kind of scary. This next movie I do has to be right and different and I have to do a good job in it. I have to act in it. With "Malcolm”, I just kind of have fun and do it. But now I actually have to work with great people and really get into it. We'll see what happens.

TeenHollywood: How many more years of “Malcolm” do you have?

Frankie: Hopefully, a couple more. We're in (season) number six right now. We've done like 125 episodes. It's going well. I hear the ratings are still good this year. So probably next year. After that I'll be 20. We'll see what happens.

TeenHollywood: Do you think you'll direct some of the episodes?

Frankie: No. Brian (Cranston) has been directing a bunch of the episodes but he's really into that. Directing seems so impossible to me. Everything has to come from you and you're there from the beginning of the day to the way end, nonstop. I just can't imagine.

TeenHollywood: Have you adjusted to having a little brother around the set?


Frankie: Yeah. At first the babies we had would always
cry. These babies that are about a year and a half, I've never heard them cry. They're on set all day, every day. They're so happy. Whenever they see me or Justin or Jane, they (smile). It's scary almost. They must be on some drugs to make them so good. It works. Because you can't have the baby on the show and have the babysitters all the time. They've been able to do some great opening scenes with the baby and it's turned out good.

TeenHollywood: You were such a car buff and we hear that you’ve given up a lot of your cars. Why?


Frankie: I've pretty much sold everything, truthfully. I don't know why. I'm still a car guy. It's kind of scary how people don't know what I've been in but they know I've got a lot of cars. I wasn't driving them and just started selling things and I now I only have two cars.

TeenHollywood: What's your main ride?

Frankie: I have a Range Rover. Nothing too crazy. I have the new GTO. I love it. I have the '04 that has the 5.7 liter, 260 horsepower engine. The newer one has a 6-liter, 400 horsepower engine. I might have to get that one. It's fun.

TeenHollywood: Yep, you’re a car guy alright. Are you taking driving lessons?

Frankie: Yeah. I've taken a lot of (courses). I race cars. I've definitely taken a lot of racing courses.

TeenHollywood: Is it dangerous?

Frankie: Driving in LA is way more dangerous than driving 180 miles per hour on a track. I mostly race on a track with no walls, so if you spin out or you crash you go out onto the dirt. Know what I mean? Everybody is there to race, and you have your helmet and a roll bar and harnesses. You're so strapped in so that even if you get hit, it’s okay. I was in the tour de Grand Prix in Long Beach this year and on the last lap I crashed pretty hard and if I did that in my normal car, I'd be in the hospital but on the track, it wasn't a big deal.

TeenHollywood: Have you ever rolled?

Frankie: (grinning) Uh...ah... no. No comment.
TeenHollywood: First season “Malcolm” is out on DVD. Do you do commentary on the DVDs?

Frankie: We only had the first unit came out. We have a lot of original music for the show and when you come out on DVD you have to pay all the musicians. We
don't want to change the music for the DVD because that's part of the show. So they're going through some stuff now for a couple of the other seasons, but for the first DVD, I didn't do any commentary. Now that we're on year 6, if we do (seasons) two through five, I have more to talk about.

TeenHollywood: Is it hard to do commentary?


Frankie: It's hard in the sense that we've done so much that everything jumbles together. I don't remember years five to one. It could be fun because I do have some stories and I'm close to the cast and I've got so much to talk about, that I think it would be interesting.
TeenHollywood: You have a rep for being pretty level-headed and together. That’s hard in Hollywood. How do you maintain that when so many young stars are going way off track?

Frankie: I've always been independent and have known what I wanted to do. I've never been a partier at all. I bought a house that is a cozy, comfortable family house and then I bought another house that was more like a cool, young bachelor type house and I got rid of it after 14 days because it wasn't me. I'm more of a chilled, laid back guy. I'm always working and I don't want to through anything away. I've been so lucky it would be stupid to throw it away.

TeenHollywood: What is up for the future in film for you? Don’t you have a limited time to shoot a movie while doing the T.V. show?


Frankie: I only have from mid-April until the beginning of August to shoot. Once I pick what movie I'm going
to do, they really have to get on with scheduling and get everyone else together. That's the hardest thing because all the movies I've read or been offered or that I want to do are filming right now (in winter) while I'm doing “Malcolm”. It's so hard being on the show and having a respected movie career.
We have a feeling he’ll succeed anyway.

Frankie Muniz likes to do stunts

Frankie Muniz owns four cars, a home in the posh neighborhood of Brentwood, California and perhaps if he really, really wanted, he could buy me using a portion of the two-million dollar pay check he earned for Agent Cody Banks. At seventeen, Muniz has the preteen market cornered straddling both mediums of television and cinema. While his co-star, Hilary Duff, is the very embodiment of giggly teenage spirit, Muniz is centered and mature beyond his years. Perhaps it is because he's been in the biz for most of his life.

What appealed to you about Agent Cody Banks?
I remember reading the script like three or four years ago now—actually right when I did Big Fat Liar … and thinking it was so cool. Usually when you read a script you can't tell. It just seemed like a lot of fun to do and it didn't end up getting made when it was supposed to. It was supposed to be made a year and a half before, but I was busy with the show, so when I heard that we could actually do it this last summer, I was so excited. I'd go to the set because I wouldn't know what to expect because it was just this little movie at first.

Did you do all the stunts yourself?
I did a lot of it. Pretty much all the fighting stuff except for the flips, I did. I didn't do any of the snowboarding. I did a lot of the skateboarding except when I go out of the tube and grind on the rail. I loved doing the stunts. I would hate when they told me I couldn't do one. If I had to like jump off a 400 foot drop, they would be like, ‘No you can't do this one.' I'd be like ‘Come on!' because that's part of the fun, you know what I mean?

Was it a stretch to play a guy who's nervous around girls?
Not too big of a stretch! I can't really talk to girls—like going up to them and talking to them, but I can talk to girls. Like I can have a conversation with them, but I can't like hit on a girl, you know what I mean?

Are you surprised that you're a sex symbol?
You mean all 93 pounds of me? I think that's weird because I'm just me. I don't have girls chasing me.

Do women make you nervous?
No! Not at all. I just am happy without them.

Do you miss the normal life of a kid?
Not at all. I have friends who go to normal school and do the normal teenage thing. I can't stand teenagers! They're just boring! Of course I'm a teenager—for some reason I'll hang out with them but for some reason I'm so annoyed by them. It's just the things they do and the way they act—They're just not themselves, you know what I mean? The few friends I do have are completely like me, you know what I mean? They don't dress a certain way. They don't act a certain way. They all can't talk to girls. You know, it's cool to have a group of kids where you don't have to worry how you look, how you act. My best friend Luke, I've been friends with like since I moved out here. The day I moved out here I met him and we hang out every day, all day.

How did you and Hilary meet?
We met actually when I first moved out here too. I was living at the Oakwood Apartments and you know, a million, trillion kids live there and I met Hilary at the pool there. We were like 12. We always hung out and we always, you know, kept in touch. One day she asked me if I wanted to be on her show and I said, ‘Sure. Yeah that would be fun.' And then we did the movie together, so it's you know cool to be able to act with a friend.

Were you nervous meeting Hilary for the first time?
She came up to me! I'm telling you—I would never be able to go up to a girl, but I was in the pool … I didn't even know what a girl was!

Have you been house hunting?
I have been house hunting. I actually bought a house, but I moved out of it. It's too crazy for me. It's me by myself when I turn 18—too much space. It's scary. But I found a house that I'm looking into getting, but I'm not going to get. I live in Brentwood right now, but I'm moving to Encino.

What is your car now?
I have four right now, but I've gone through a few more than that.

Do you fear becoming a child star statistic?
Well, I don't know anything different, you know what I mean? So I don't know whether it'd be easier or harder. This is normal to me—coming and doing this and going to the award shows and meeting all my favorite celebrities and filming and working with stuff. One of my biggest problems is that I can't sleep past 7 am because I'm always working that no matter what time I go to sleep, I get up. If I have nothing to do that day, I have to be doing something. I have to go somewhere. I can't just sit at home and watch TV and that's one thing that my friends get annoyed with. They're like I can't get you to sit down and relax? I feel like the few hours that I have to do something, I have to take advantage of it. Everyone keeps asking how I'm going to make the transition into being an adult actor. When I turn 18. I'm going to be an adult and if I'm acting then, won't I be an adult actor? You know, but if I continue to do what I am doing, I think everything will work out—everything will be alright. You know, I ‘m going to be doing drama and trying out.

Do you aspire to do anything else?
I would love to do acting as long as I can. You never know when it's not going to be there. You never know if you're not going to be wanted, so that's why I'm trying to do as much as I can while I can. I've got thousands of other things that I would like to do too. Racing cars, playing basketball being in the NBA. I actually started a little bit of [racing cars] but I got out of it.

Do you plan to play more adult roles?
If I still look like a teenager, then I will play a teenager. I mean that's one thing that has helped me as an actor—that I can play younger. I'm going to be 18 this year and I'm going to be playing 14-15.
How much more of Malcolm do you have in you?
We're at 85 episodes now. We have like two more this season, so we're getting close to a hundred. We're still going really strong. People are still watching. I don't see it one of those shows that go on forever until people stop watching, you know what I mean? I can't picture it going off the air because people stop watching it. I think it's going to be one of those shows that kind of ends in 120 episodes and it's going to be the series finale and a billion people will turn in to watch that one episode, you know what I mean, rather than being cancelled. I would hate that.


What are the issues in your life that concern you on a daily basis besides your career?
I don't really consider myself a normal 17-year-old. Because I'm not into what normal 17- year-olds do at all. I would never go to a party. I've never been to club. I don't think about much other than my career because that's one thing I'm really focused on right now.

Frankie Muniz helps St. Jude Children Research Hospital charity

"Thanks and Giving: All Year Long" is a very special book compiled by Marlo Thomas that is meant to share the spirit of being thankful -- and being a giver. All proceeds from the sale of the book go to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, the longtime charity of Thomas' famous father, Danny. Contributors include celebrities like Hilary Duff and Frankie Muniz, as well as writers and authors such as Maurice Sendak and Gail Carson Levine. Even Tiger Woods weighs in on giving up his prized coin collection as a little boy to help children in Ethiopia. This book will be an inspiration to adults and give plenty of resources for planting the seeds of gratitude and giving in your children.

Frankie Muniz is The Real Boy Genius


We all know that Frankie Muniz's best known character, Malcolm, is a boy genius. But, did you know Frankie was one too? Frankie Muniz grew up in Wood Ridge, New Jersey. By grade one he was already doing fourth grade work. Frankie became interested in acting after watching his older sister, Cristina, act in a musical. Muniz took the stage himself, at age eight, when he played Tiny Tim in a production of A Christmas Carol.

Frankie Muniz landed guest roles on Spin City and Sabrina the Teenage Witch before landing the role of Malcolm on Malcolm in the Middle, in 1999. The show about a genius living with television's most screwed up family has been a big hit on Fox from the start. The first episode of the show picked up the largest audience for a Fox debut since The Simpsons.

Frankie Muniz's first major movie role was with Kevin Bacon in My Dog Skip. Muniz plays an eight year-old kid from Mississippi who hangs out with two crooks. Frankie thenwent on to score the lead in Big Fat Liar where he plays a 14 years-old boy named
Jason Shepherd who's told one too many lies. Muniz's also played a teenage secret agent, with a crush on Hilary Duff, in Agent Cody Banks.

Agent Cody Banks was a super-popular, super-cool film that left audiences wanting more. Well, more arrives on March 12, 2004 when Agent Cody Banks 2: Destination London hits theaters! Frankie Muniz is back, as agent Cody Banks, only this time he's in London. Cody Banks goes undercover as a boarding school student, and he's got some new sidekicks to help him out. First, there's agent Derek (played by Anthony Anderson) as his new, wisecracking handler who tends to steal mopeds. Then, there's agent Emily (played by S Club 7's Hannah Spearritt) she's a fiesty British secret agent who has moves that Neo would envy!

Frankie Muniz - Did U Know?
Frankie Muniz's has been playing the drums since he was nine.

Frankie Muniz has a cat named Pumpkin.

Frankie owns the VW Jetta from The Fast and the Furious.

Frankie Muniz's favorite team is the LA Clippers (Well, nobody's perfect!)

Frankie Muniz Says...
"I'm not a genius - just a little ahead of other kids."



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