The young and adorable star currently plays "Holly" on WB's "What I Like About You". Bynes began began her career at a comedy camp. As she continued to work on her craft, it was at a showcase performance in Los Angeles that producers Brian Robbins and Dan Schneider discovered her and added Bynes to the cast of Nickelodeon's All That. After just one season, she was nominated for a 1997 Cable Ace Award, putting her in the company of such established actresses as Tracey Ullman and Janeane Garofalo. Working steadily since the age of 10, Bynes charmed audiences in the hit comedy Big Fat Liar with Frankie Muniz. In the spring of 2003, Bynes starred in her first lead role in the hit film What A Girl Wants, co-starring Colin Firth and Kelly Preston. Known for her unique style of bold, no-holds-barred physical comedy, Bynes has risen to the top on the Nickelodeon series and remained on All That for four seasons. By the age of 12, Bynes became the youngest performer to host her own variety sketch show, The Amanda Show, which earned her the Favorite Television Actress honor four years in a row from Nickelodeon's Kids' Choice Awards and in 2003 & 2004 won Favorite Movie Actress for What A Girl Wants. In 2003, Bynes was featured on the It's Totally Raining Teens cover of Vanity Fair. She was nominated for Choice TV Actress in a Comedy at the "2003 Teen Choice Awards." During her recent hiatus, Bynes completed shooting the romantic comedy Lovewrecked. Bynes was born on April 3, 1986, in California. In her spare time, she enjoys painting, writing and drawing. She resides in Los Angeles.
Despite Her Latest Role, Amanda Bynes Is No Robot
Actress making an effort not to build a career like her peers'. Amanda Bynes is Piper in "Robots". "I don't really relate to that many people who are my age, especially in this business."
The first thing you notice about 18-year-old Amanda Bynes is that she's wise beyond her years. Ask about her acting influences and she starts dropping black-and-white movie names; bring up the latest albums by her peers, and she proudly announces that she's keeping her voice on the screen. Nobody knows who she's dating, where she's partying, or what the name of her dog is — and Bynes wouldn't have it any other way.
"I don't want to have my face on everything. ... I just don't want to be some young brat who is everywhere," she said. "It sickens me."
You know the usual suspects — Lindsay, Britney, Hilary, Jessica, Paris — but when the name Amanda Bynes comes up, all that comes to mind is one thing: the work. Years of teen-pleasing comedic performances on "All That" and "The Amanda Show," a movie debut in "Big Fat Liar," the star vehicle of "What a Girl Wants," and three seasons on the WB sitcom "What I Like About You."
While the competition was busy filling up the tabloids, Bynes took on her biggest role yet, voicing a character in this weekend's "Robots" alongside names like Mel Brooks, Halle Berry and Robin Williams. As the first teen actress to land a lead role in CGI animation, Bynes is setting the stage to still be successful when her age catches up to her mindset.
She might not have been on the path, though, were it not for Buncha Crunch candy.
"I remember when I did that commercial," she said, recalling her on-camera debut at age 7. "It was my first commercial and I was so excited. There was this little boy who was in the commercial with me, and the first thing he said to me was, 'How many commercials have you done?' I said it was my first one, and he said, 'Well, I've done two'. He had such an attitude about it, and was like, I'm so much better than you."
"Right off the bat, that was my first lesson," Bynes laughed, "that you have to have thick skin and not care about what other people try to say to knock you down. It instilled in me this attitude of believing in myself and not needing anyone else's positive reinforcement or negative, as long as I'm happy with myself and doing the best I can do."
Pushy kid actors aside, Bynes remembers a supportive childhood that had her mother driving her to auditions and her father offering up continuous inspiration. "My Dad is a big movie buff," she insists. "He's seen every movie known to man, and that's where my love for movies and TV came from. He'd always say, 'Amanda, come here,' and me and my sister would come over and watch different things he wanted to show us."
One such time, Bynes ended up being captivated by a comedy legend who would influence the many pratfalls and silly faces that Bynes later served up to Nickelodeon kids who'd never even heard the name Lucille Ball. "I always loved 'I Love Lucy,' " Bynes said. "I loved watching stuff that made me laugh and feel good, and made my family laugh."
When movies like "Shrek" and "Finding Nemo" exploded, Bynes saw the opportunity to look back on that beloved family entertainment and pay it forward. Still, it wasn't until the futuristic tale of Rodney Copperbottom (voiced by Ewan McGregor) came along that she found the right role. "I read the script and I knew I wanted to do this one," she said.
"My character, Piper, is the tomboy of the group," she said proudly. "She's the only girl, and she has to be rough in order to be with all the guys. She meets Rodney for the first time and falls in love with him and has a little bit of a crush on him, but he is actually in love with Cappy, which is Halle Berry's character."
So, let the other young actresses deal with reality shows and music videos. Bynes is spending her days alongside Oscar winners, picking up tools that should help her to build a lengthy career. "I'm not an old soul, but I'd much prefer to be watching movies or spending time with my friends. Everything else is so unfulfilling. I'm so lucky to be able to do this, and I hope to do it for as long as I can. Hopefully I will."
As those who love robots so often must do, Bynes is content to dream about the future.
Amanda Bynes Floats 'Lovewrecked' Details
During interviews for the animated film "Robots," Amanda Bynes offered a sneak peek into her upcoming romantic comedy "Lovewrecked," helmed by "Grease" director Randal Kleiser.
The "What I Like About You" star co-stars in the movie with Chris Carmack, from "The O.C." and Jamie-Lynn DiScala, from "The Sopranos."
"Basically, it's about this girl, myself, I play a girl Jenny Riley, who's like obsessed with this pop star sort of, like a Justin Timberlake, of her time or whatever," Bynes tells Zap2it.com. "She's followed him on this yacht, and he gets sick, and so he falls over, she jumps after him, and there's a storm, so throughout this, they get stuck on this island, and they're stranded. He has broken his leg, so she has to like find food for them, and one day she goes to the trees and she hears like a little kid scream, and she sees somebody being hit with a beach ball."
Bynes giggles as she continues. "Turns out they're actually on the other side of a resort. So she goes back to tell him, and she's running, and he goes, 'Jenny.' And he hugs her, and she's like, 'Wait, I have something to tell you,' and he goes, 'I just want you to know that if I could've been stuck here with anybody, I'm so glad I'm stuck here with you.' And so, she doesn't let him know."
The movie was shot in the Dominican Republic and is expected out this summer.
"You wonder if you got stuck with the person of your dreams what would you do?" says the actress. "She comes back wearing lipstick and full hair and make-up, because she went back to this little resort market. He's like, 'Are you wearing make-up?' And she has to come up with 'berries.' It was really a fun movie to make."
She adds, " It was definitely a movie that I would want to see myself."
In "Robots," scheduled for release March 11, Bynes voices the role of a robot in a cast which includes Robin Williams, Halle Berry and Mel Brooks.
Amanda Bynes speaks about "Robots"
Amanda Bynes is part of that new crop of teenage star that continues to take Hollywood by storm balancing successful careers on both the big and small screen. The attractive young actress rose to fame on Nickelodeon as a preteen starlet and moved on to the WB network for her teenage years. In 1996, she became a regular cast member on the kid's sketch comedy show All That, which first earned her a growing fan base of adoring admirers.
Sticking with Nickelodeon-style broad comedy, she was a panellist on the game show Figure It Out as well as host for the popular variety show The Amanda Show, which won several Kid's Choice awards. After lending her voice to the long-running cartoon Rugrats, Bynes made the big switch from the PG world of Nickelodeon to the more mature world of the WB with a part on the short-lived series The Nightmare Room, narrated by author R.L. Stine. The next year she made her feature film debut in the comedy Big Fat Liar as the best friend of fellow young superstar Frankie Muniz. In 2002, she launched the WB sitcom What I Like About You, playing a comedic younger sister who moves into the trendy Upper West Side apartment of her straight-laced older sister (Jennie Garth from Beverly Hills 90210). Widely released one day after her 17th birthday, the romantic comedy What a Girl Wants marked her first major starring role as Daphne, a girl who goes to England in search of her father (Colin Firth) and finds romance.
Fans of the actress will next hear her as an energetic and colourful robot in Robots. Set on a world populated entirely by robots, this is the story of a young genius, Rodney (Ewan McGregor), who wants to make robots capable of making the world a better place, but he finds his dream challenged by a corporate tyrant and a master inventor, while also being seduced by a sexy corporate robot, Cappy (Halle Berry).
Question: So Chris Wedge [director] said you have the perfect voice for an animated Character?
Bynes: He did? I wonder why?
Question: Was it offered to you or did you have to fight for it, was it easy to get?
Bynes: No, I was very lucky they sent me the script and they wanted me to be Piper so.
Question: So lets talk to you about the script. Did you laugh right away when you read it, what was it?
Bynes: You know I loved; I loved the story, which is shine no matter what you made of. It's like it doesn't matter where you came from or what you look like but if you have goals and if you want to be something or whatever it is you want to do the only person who can stop you is yourself.
Question: Now were you disappointed that you, I mean, every one is in the same boat, do you get disappointed when you don't get and a chance to work with an amazing amount of people that are in this movie, I mean, you don't actually work with Robin Williams you get to work with all these guys ---
Bynes: Yeah I mean it's definitely odd that I'm in a movie with all these talented people and yet I haven't met them until today. You know, it it's definitely different but it's exciting. I mean I'm so lucky to be able to be a part of this movie.
Question: How do you deal with the voice? I mean what do you try to do a little bit different?
Bynes: Well it depends on what you're doing. For this they wanted it to sound like me so I was kind of lucky. I got to have it easy so I just sort of did a younger version of my voice.
Question: A younger version how old are you now?
Bynes: I'm eighteen.
Question: A younger version?
Bynes: Yeah I just, you know.
Question: A higher, higher?
Bynes: Yeah just sort of a little squeakier and also it is a robot so, you know, it has to be a little different.
Question: Did they send to you pictures of what she was going to look like beforehand?
Question: Did you get the feeling of the animation also?
Bynes: Yes they sent me pictures before I signed on to do it of what it was going to look like; rough ideas, so I definitely thought it looked very cool.
Question: What were some of your growing up favourite animated movies and did you like watching them?
Bynes: Well I love all the Disney movies, because when I was young there really weren't any..
Question: Well what were some of the classics you loved?
Bynes: Well I loved Beauty and the Beast that was always one of my favourites and like The Little Mermaid.
Question: You spend a lot of time drawing and painting yeah?
Bynes: Yes, I love.I love to .
Question: What kind of things do you draw? Do you ever see yourself ever moving into this sort of design element or something like that or is acting strictly what you want to do?
Bynes: Do you know I want to do there's so much that I want to do in my life I don't know. I mean I love to draw and I love to paint so I don't know if I'll ever do it professionally but I definitely enjoy doing that right now.
Question: What else do you want to do in your life Amanda? You would want to do a lot more in your life like what?
Bynes: I mean there's not like one specific thing I want to just do anything that's good, you know, like I just want to work for a long time so.
Question: Beyond acting?
Bynes: Ah yeah. I might either want to direct one day, I might, want to you know, do a play on Broadway I hope.
Question: A play on Broadway? Are you looking for anything?
Bynes: I always have one eye opened.
Question: Is there a particular play that you want to do?
Bynes: I would love to do My Fair Lady one day, you never know.
Question: Well as much as you want to do how do you find time to juggle it between this, or doing films and a TV show.
Bynes: Well I am lucky because on the show there's a hiatus, you know there is always a good period of time where I could squeeze in a movie. Like this summer I did a movie called "Love Wrecked" which I think will be coming out in spring, so I kind of always have little pieces of time .
Question: What's "Lovewrecked"?
Bynes: It was directed by Randall Kleiser and I'm very excited. P.F.: Who else is in it?
Question: Chris Carmack from the OC yeah and, Jamie Lynn DiScala whose from the Sopranos. I play a girl Jenny Taylor whose obsessed with this pop star like a Justin Timberlake of her time or whatever in this movie and she and he get stuck on this island together. She's followed him on this yacht and he gets sick and so he falls over and she jumps after him, so throughout this they get stuck on this island and become stranded. So he has broken his leg, so she has to get food for them and so one day she like goes to the trees and she hears la little kid scream, follows the noise and she sees like somebody being hit with a beach ball it turns out they're actually on the other side of a resort. She goes back to tell him and, you know, she's running and he goes "Jenny" and he hugs her and she say's "wait I have something to tell you" and he goes "I just want you to know that if I could have been stuck here with anybody I'm so glad I'm stuck here with you." And so she doesn't let him know. She, she leaves out like he says "what do you have to tell me?" And she's like "nothing", you know, it's one of those, I mean wouldn't you when you get to be stuck with the person of your dreams? So she decides she wants to get to know him a little bit letter so the lie gets a little sicker and sicker and she comes back wearing like, you know, lipstick and full hair and make-up because she keeps going back to the little resort market. He's like "are you, are you, you know, wearing make-up" and she's you know has to come up with berries. it was a really fun movie to make, and one that I would want to see myself, so it was really fun.
Question: Did you shoot it in Hawaii or where did you shoot it?
Bynes: The Dominican Republic actually.
Question: What are the challenges of being an eighteen year old, young attractive actress in Hollywood where there's a kind of a group of you competing and for the best roles around. I mean is it tough that you compete with each other?
Bynes: No I think I mean some people do compete. I've never been the type I've never been, you know, the cut throat type. I mean I've always had my mind set that in this business there are so many movies to make, so there's room for all of us. I mean if there was only me I'd be exhausted.
Question: You seem very aware of your fan base in that, that you are an inspiration to younger kids of either sex. Do you ever think of yourself as like okay now I'm eighteen can I grow out of this, can I get away from the Nickelodeon image and?
Bynes: No I mean I am so lucky that kids like what I've done and, you know, I'm growing up but .
Question: So you are looking for grown up role I guess .
Bynes: I don't think anybody's trying to stop me from growing up. No I mean 'm looking for roles that are right for me at the time I am doing them and everything I've done has been true to myself and I've never done anything that I haven't loved and I'm, you know, always true to myself.
Question: Well what did you do?
Question: So how do you feel about some of the images that younger girls are bombarded with and Christine Aguilera kind of thing where they mature and it becomes this real dirty kind of thing how do you feel about that sort of image.
Bynes: I mean it's just not me but it's, you know, everybody has their own thing, you know people grow up differently, you know, Christine Aguilera, you know, grew up, you know, she was sort of on I think she was on three, I mean the, the Disney shows, so I mean, you know, everybody wants to find their own, you know, everybody rebels so.
Question: Yeah that's what I'm asking you before like if you would, if you would be asked to light up a cigarette or strip or, you know, like Natalie Portman or some of these younger actresses are growing up in a, in a film script would you do that or at this point in your career would you say no?
Bynes: Well at this point in my career I definitely wouldn't do any of that but that's it and that's where I am right now. I don't think I would ever do anything like that because I don't really enjoy watching that myself, so you know but.
Question: What do you enjoy watching?
Bynes: I love movies that have a good story. I love movies that make you feel good about yourself but I also love movies make you walk away thinking about them. I like things that have you know something to them.
Question: And I take it you're not doing what a lot of the other teenagers actresses are doing at the moment and recording an album at any time soon?
Bynes: No definitely not.
Question: Can you sing?
Bynes: I, can and I've actually started doing musical theatre that's what I started before I did TV so I definitely, you know, enjoy singing .
Question: So nobody's ever come up to you with an album idea?
Bynes: Well I mean I, it it's definitely something that I don't want to do but, you know, everybody always wants to make money off of anybody talented and, you just have to stay true to yourself.
Question: What are you doing for your next hiatus? You've got another hiatus coming up?
Bynes: Well I have two movies that are in the works.
Question: Can you talk about any of them?
Bynes: I can't.
Question: None of them?
Question: What are they.
Bynes: One is sort of a, a mystery type comedy and then the other one is a comedy.
Question: What about, what about college and, and other aspirations do you have any desire to?
Bynes: Yeah I mean I would love to go to college and I definitely will at some point in my life but right now I'm, you know, I'm doing a show, I'm you know, doing press for me to be in school I just couldn't be fully there and I want to really be there.
Question: What would you like to study?
Bynes: Well I mean I love and fascinated by psychology so that would be something that I would like to learn more about so anything that would help me in my life and I am so lucky to be doing what I love, you know, for a living so I would love to learn something that would just sort of help me have my best, you know.
Question: Will you study outside of California would you like to go to an east coast?
Bynes: Yeah I might, I mean, I love New York and I have always loved, you know the energy there so I might go there but you know I'm not ready yet so we'll see.
Question: You seem to have a pretty grounded sense of yourself which is one of the things that I have noticed the couple of times I have met you, where did that come from do you think?
Bynes: I think it's sort of something that you're born with I really believe that, you know, there's a lot you can learn from being with people I mean I learn so much from my parents I think they have so much to do with who I am, but you sort of you are kind of who you are from like you can kind of tell from five years old who you are going to be, if you're going to be shy or you're going for things.
Question: But this industry can change that I mean that can make you it can give you ego it can .
Bynes: . grounded wise definitely my parents they get all credit because they, you know, every day are just, you know, they're wonderful people and I think I, you always look to your parents and I think people who have problems later on in their life always sort of goes back to things that their parents didn't do or you know what I mean that sort of, you know, that's your core so I'm really lucky.
Question: What else is happening how much longer are you going to be doing the TV show for?
Bynes: We're in our third season now, I hope to do a fourth season and then I think I will move on.
Question: So the fourth season could be the last one?
Question: Is that all your contracted for .
Bynes: I can't talk about that.
Question: Why did you want to do television in the first place, I mean was it, did it represent a degree of stability in your career? I mean you were doing fine you were starting to break out in the movies and.
Bynes: Well I really wanted to do something that was a little bit older than my other TV show for, you know, teenage girls and young adults just to sort of, just because I was growing up I wanted to do something like that and, you know, I, I love, you know, watching those sorts of shows so I wanted to do it and then there's no rush in other work any movies at the time so that was a good show I said why not?
Question: How do you relax?
Bynes: I try to get like massages, facials, I need to have a thing in that nature, you know relax, meditation type things but I love to go to the movies and, you know, go out to eat with my friends.
Question: What are you going to do this summer coming, you know, thinking ahead this summer what's do like concerts you want to see, any books you want to read or any movies you want to go to or something like that?
Bynes: I don't know I know thinking about it, I know I've got to get a list going nothing yet.
Amanda's 18th Birthday Won't Change Her
Teen favorite Amanda Bynes is well aware that some of her fellow young femme celebrities feel pressured to sex up their images. However, the "What I Like About You" actress, who won Favorite Movie Actress honors at this month's Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards, makes it clear she's not one to succumb to industry pressures.
"I know who I am and I know what I want to do -- and I would never let anyone push me into anything I don't want to do," notes Amanda, who also believes such pressures are more prevalent in the music world than they are for actresses.
"I think a lot of that kind of pressure has to do with the people surrounding you," she adds, speaking of managers, stylists, etc. "But in the end, it's important to remember, we're paying them."
The gifted Amanda -- who has been compared to funny ladies from Lucille Ball to Gilda Radner to Goldie Hawn since her days on Nickelodeon's "All That" and her own "Amanda Show" -- turned 18 on April 3.
Although she calls the birthday "kind of momentous," it's not going to make profound differences in her life. At least, not immediately.
"I try not to live my life by numbers. I'm still going to do my best to make good choices career-wise and in my life. I don't want to grow up too fast." She also says, "I want longevity and I don't want to cash out now. That would have been easy to do after the movie (last year's hit "What a Girl Wants"). I was offered a couple of others that would have been very similar."
Right now, she's happy to be ensconced on her WB sitcom with Jennie Garth. She's been taking meetings on feature prospects and may or may not film another movie before series production resumes. "As long as something is well-written and funny, that's all that matters -- whether it's a movie, play, or guest spot on another show. My dad and I are actually developing a couple of things. He's a dentist, and he is actually the funniest guy I know. That's where I get my comedic instincts."
''Why I Love Lucy'' by Amanda Bynes
I feel like I've known Lucy all my life. She was one of my first baby-sitters from the moment I first discovered her on television. As I got a little older, I loved Lucy's scheming to become part of Ricky's show. She was so determined to perform, and Ricky was just as determined to keep her off the stage. When she and Ethel would get into very elaborate situations that would always get messed up, I would laugh my head off. I think Lucy invented "Girl Power!"
I only have to think of Lucy and I start to smile. She can do that to me whenever I feel sad. I can always count on Lucy to cheer me up. Lucy inspired me to become an actress and try to make people laugh. She is definitely my role model.
Dressing up in 50's style dress, high heels and a red wig and "becoming Lucy" was one of my biggest thrills as an actress. It was so cool to go back in time and try to create an "I Love Lucy" moment. I don't think there will ever be another Lucy, but luckily she will always be on TV for every future kid to discover why "I Love Lucy"!
What Amanda Bynes wants?
This is a terrific time to be in the Amanda Bynes business. The actress has a Top 10 box-office movie in theaters ("What a Girl Wants"), a starring role in a fun TV series (the WB's "What I Like About You") and ambitious plans to make the transition into more mature roles in the coming years.
Like fellow teen-queen Hilary Duff, who also has parlayed cable-TV stardom (the Disney Channel's "Lizzie McGuire") into a concurrent film career ("Agent Cody Banks," "The Lizzie McGuire Movie"), Bynes has been working toward all this for some time. She started in commercials a decade ago, moved quickly to a role on Nickelodeon's "All That" and then landed her own show, "Amanda," a short time later. Her first theatrical release, "Big Fat Liar," also hit it big with the 7-to-17 set.
Her pleasant, girl-next-door looks and gift for lightweight comedy and physical stunts on Nick eventually drew the attention of Tollin-Robbins Productions, the outfit behind the WB's top-rated show, "Smallville." The producers thought she'd be perfect to play kid sister to "Beverly Hills, 90210" alum Jennie Garth, who plays 28-year-old Valerie on "What I Like About You" (tonight at 8 on the WB). Bynes is Holly, 16, who is allowed to move into Val's New York City apartment when Dad gets transferred to Japan.
The siblings bond, clash and generally get into Holly-inspired trouble. Tonight's amusing episode, in which a festering feud with a neighbor threatens to get Holly bounced from the apartment for good, is no exception. Bynes handles the quick-tempo comic bantering like the seasoned pro she already is, and Garth holds her own as the brittle, uptight half of the equation.
A double-threat star at the tender age of 17. Isn't that what every girl wants?
Amanda Bynes is an a list of Hollywood's young best and brightest
Amanda Bynes, Amber Tamblyn, Anne Hathaway. Three of the brightest young female talents on the Hollywood scene have quite a bit in common beyond beauty, talent and their status as undeniable stars on the ascendant.
In a business filled with personalities who are riddled with affectations and insecurities, these three smart young women stand out as poised and well-spoken, focused and insightful.
Each of the three "A's" speaks fondly of her parents. Each started performing as a child. Each is determined to set her own course in the entertainment world.
Amanda, whose sketch comedy work on "All That" and her own "The Amanda Show" on Nickelodeon won her awards and breathless comparisons to Lucille Ball and Gilda Radner, says, "I know who I am and I know what I want to do -- and I would never let anyone push me into anything I don't want to do."
Looking back, the 18-year-old daughter of Thousand Oaks, CA dentist Rick Bynes and his wife Lynn recognizes that she wasn't aware of the enormity of what she was doing when she was a preteen comedy queen. "I can't believe I had a show named after me," she admits. "It was like a whirlwind; we were constantly moving, changing clothes, putting on wigs -- and it was one of the best training grounds I could have had.
"I had a great time doing it -- and I'm glad I moved on. I think it's important to keep doing new things," says the performer, who now stars on WB's "What I Like About You" and has the big screen hit "What a Girl Wants" to her credit. "I don't care which medium it is, television, film, stage -- a commercial, even -- as long as it's funny."
Similarly, 21-year-old Anne Hathaway is proud to have gone out on a limb with a complete departure role in her upcoming independent flick, "Havoc." The refined, Brooklyn, N.Y.-born, New Jersey-raised daughter of attorney Gerard Hathaway and famed stage actress Kate McCauley plays a disaffected girl from an upper middle class Pacific Palisades, California family -- who gets caught up in Latino gang life in East L.A.
"I had to use my brain a lot," she says happily.
Amber sets off for Vancouver in June to begin playing Tibby in the big screen adaptation of Ann Brashares' "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants." The blue-haired, rebellious Wal Mart worker is quite unlike Joan of "Joan of Arcadia" -- which is one reason Amber wants to play her.
"She is a confused, colorless person, the one among this group of friends who stays home over the summer," as Amber, who is also a published poet, describes her. And she is transformed by her experience of friendship with a 10-year-old dying of leukemia.
"I love a message in what I do," says Amber, the Santa Monica, Born daughter of musical star Russ Tamblyn and singer-artist Bonnie Tamblyn. "The message is the most important thing to me. It doesn't have to be a positive message, but a good, strong point. Ultimately, I hope to do things that transcend the ages, that my great, great, grandchildren will be able to watch."
Each of the A's relishes good work and plenty of it. "I love multitasking," says Amanda. "Although it's stressful, it trains you to get a lot done."
"I have an incredibly high work ethic," echoes Amber, who turns 21 on May 14. "Like my mother, I sometimes bite off more than it looks like I can chew, but it motivates me to do a lot. I like multitasking."
So does Anne, but there is only so much even a supergirl can do at once.
She has been so busy making movies -- "Ella Enchanted," "Havoc," "Princess Diaries 2" and, next, "Brokeback Mountain" with Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal -- she bemoans falling behind in her studies at Vassar.
"I'll be going back as a second semester sophomore when I return. I really do love it, I love learning," she says. "At that school particularly, it's a gift to be in an environment where information and knowledge of such a high quality are there for the taking."
On the personal side, neither Anne nor Amanda is in a serious relationship at the moment, while Amber has a boyfriend of five years, hip hop producer Travis Burkheimer. They each talk of wanting to have a family some day -- but not in the near future.
The funny rising star, the soulful rising star, and the brainy rising star are each riding a wave of fame and fortune that has a long way to go.
14 Questions for Amanda Bynes
1. Do you feel you're more mature now that you're 18?
Not really. I just turned 18 and I can definitely be mature when I want to be. But then I'm very immature when I haven't made my bed in four days or I'm walking around all day in my pajamas. I wish I could say I was more mature, but I'm not.
2. Was there anything you had difficulty going through as a teen?
I had bad acne when I was 14 and I had to continue working, putting makeup on and having lights on me. It was one of the harder times of my life because I didn't want to go out and would just sit home on the computer. I was so self conscious about it. I made it out to be something bigger than it was. But I was traumatized. Eventually my doctor prescribed Accutane and my skin cleared up. It really changed my life. What I would tell people who have the same problem is that you'll get through it and it'll make you a stronger person. I did.
3. How do you avoid the drama that comes with the industry?
I'm a good person, and I don't want to undermine anyone. I don't want to make anyone look stupid. I don't talk badly about people. I just try to be a nice girl and that's the best way to stay out of it. Some people have such big egos that they have to knock people down to get ahead. And I'm just who I am, and I'm a person who's very lucky. But my life is my family and not my job. If it ever got too crazy I'd be like, "Okay, I'm checkin' out now."
4. Can you give us a sneak peek at your private life? What do you do in your downtime?
I'm pretty boring. I go to The Home Depot with my dad. When I'm not doing anything I like to just sit around an watch TV. I love the VH1 shows. I'll go shopping. I'm furthering my shopping addiction. I love shoes and there's all sorts of pretty bags. And I love clothes. I like bright colors...I'm into turquoise and red.
5. What trend are you really feeling right now?
I like charm bracelets. I think that they're really in. My mom just got me one for my birthday, and each charm on it represents something about me. My nickname is Chickie, so there's a little chick on it. She knows I love sunglasses, so there's a sunglasses charm. There's a rainbow because I've always loved rainbows. A little cupcake with crystal because I like to cook, and a sandal with rhinestones because I love rhinestones.
6. What do you like to cook? Are you any good?
I wouldn't say I'm good. I enjoy what I make. Whatever I make, I make sure I eat it. My mom and I make the best apple pie in the world. I make a really good chicken vegetable stir-fry that I enjoy. I need to take classes to further my cooking career.
7. What's your guilty pleasure?
I love reality shows, but I don't feel guilty about it. I was very upset with the "Adam Returns" finale. I decided I didn't like him anymore. These girls were really beautiful and genuinely in love with him or falling in love with him, and he did the exact same thing the other girl did to him. My whole family was upset by it. My sister even called from college to complain.
8. What's your favorite chick flick?
I love "Clueless"! That was one of my favorite movies of all time. When that came out, I was fairly young. There's something about watching a movie about female empowerment. I think "Legally Blonde" did that too, because that was a fun way to feel good about being a girl. I like that feeling.
9. What would we find if we dumped out your handbag right now?
Definitely ChapStick. I'm addicted to it. I like the vanilla flavor. Probably concealer. Definitely an eyelash curler, mascara, sunglasses, a wallet, a little plastic photo album -- and my iPod, with songs like Usher's "Yeah", Blink-182's "I Miss You", Beyonce. I kind of like old songs like "Roxanne" by the Police and TLC's "Waterfalls".
10. What is the weirdest beauty ritual you've ever tried?
My grandma is a big believer in egg yolks, and she would be like, "Here, put this on your face." There was all cracked egg and it was disgusting. I did it once, and I was like, "That's great for you, Grandma, but I will never do that again." I enjoy eating them fried up, not slathering them raw on my face.
11. What type of girlfriend are you?
I think I'm fun, laid-back, hopefully a good one. I don't want to think too highly of myself, but hopefully, yeah.
12. What are three things you love and three things you hate?
I love dogs because they make such good companions and I could never live without a dog. I love shoes. And I love rhinestones and sparkles. I have when cell phones break up. It's so annoying to have to keep calling back. I hate dog hair. I don't like cottage cheese because it's all lumpy.
13. What's the most memorable phone call you've ever received?
I was in love with Jason Bateman when I was like 13. His mom used to do my hair on "The Amanda Show", and she knew how much I liked him. He came by a couple of times to see his mom, and once he called me on his birthday! I was just thrilled about it. Yeah, it was pretty much my favorite birthday present.
14. Have you ever been starstruck?
Oh my gosh, yeah! I saw Jennifer Aniston applying lip gloss with a little mirror on the Warner Bros. lot -- the "Friends" stage was directly across from us. I was sort of gawking, and my friend had to nudge me..
Amanda Bynes Makes Lead Debut With 'What A Girl Wants'
It's Amanda Bynes' birthday today, and already at the tender age of 17, the actress already has what every girl, if not boy, man or woman wants in the movie business -- a lead role in a major motion picture.
And, it's aptly titled, "What a Girl Wants."
And while 17 may seem too tricky of an age for a young performer to carry a film, it's par for the course for Bynes. After all, she already has 10 years of showbiz experience, thanks to roles on the Nickelodeon shows "All That" and "Rugrats," a hosting gig on "The Amanda Show" (which she landed by age 13), and a role opposite Frankie Muniz in the comedy "Big Fat Liar" last year.
In "What a Girl Wants," Bynes plays Daphne Reynolds, a free-spirited American teen with an unconventional mother (Kelly Preston) who ventures to London to find the father she never knew. He turns out to be Lord Henry Dashwood (Colin Firth), high profile British politician, the youngest in a family of storied aristocrats.
Needless, to say, Daphne's free-wheeling ways clash with the behavior of Henry's high-class society counterparts, and their stuffiness provides us plenty of laughs at their expense. Still, Bynes told me in a recent WRAL.com @ The Movies interview, our friends across the pond aren't offended at "Girl's" observations in the least.
"They realize that we're poking fun at the stereotype," Bynes told me with a laugh. "I've talked with several British people and interviewers, and they all had a really positive take on the movie. I think that they're confident enough in themselves. Everybody seems to be enjoying it."
But "What a Girl Wants" is far more than a movie that has fun with stereotypes. It tackles one girl's journey to find out who she is as she stands on the doorstep of adulthood. For Daphne, the dilemma is whether to be herself and be an outcast in British society -- or adapt to the rules of the British class system, and be unhappy.
Oddly enough, Bynes faces a dilemma similar to that everyday in real life, but to a different sort of degree. That's because as a performer who's known to countless children and teens worldwide, she's has a duty to act responsibly for all of those who look to her as a role model.
"I think you have to embrace being a role model because you are in the public eye, and whether you like it or not, people are going to be affected by you positively or negatively," Bynes said. "Public-wise, I really wouldn't do anything that would be detrimental to anybody else or to myself. And to a certain extent, I try to watch out and try not to do anything that would be bad for kids to see."
Still, as she grows older, Bynes realizes that she's going to have to make decisions that are going to be best for her. One that she's made consciously with "What a Girl Wants" is to take a stab at some more serious subject matter. That's not to say that Bynes doesn't display a fine amount of physical comedy and the magnetic personality that has given her Nickelodeon fans endless fits of giggles for years -- it's just that the movie has some subtle moments of poignancy, too.
"I did theater before I got into TV and everything I did was serious, so it was definitely fun for me to pull out those chops," Bynes mused. "I definitely wanted to do a movie that just wasn't comedy."
And while the first aim of "What a Girl Wants" is to entertain, Bynes is happy that viewers -- particularly girls her age -- can walk away from the movie with something to think about.
"I think that the most important lesson is to be yourself, and that you can't change yourself for anyone else," Bynes said. "I think a lot of girls try to do that for their boyfriends or their parents, so that's a strong message in this film."
There's no question that Bynes has a good handle on who she is, but the answer of where that person will be in the immediate future is one that the 17-year-old says is still up in the air.
"I definitely want to go to college, but I can't make any major decisions right now," Bynes said. "When I'm at that point, I'll just see how I'm doing. If I have a couple of movies lined up, then I'll put it off a few months. People go to college to figure out what they want to do, and it seems silly to turn down work, for me, at least."
And if that answer turns out to be acting, whether its during or after college, Bynes will no doubt deliver with her roles that same sort of heart that has gotten her to the point where she is today.
"I really enjoy acting, and whether it's TV or films, I feel lucky to be doing it at all," Bynes concluded. "In the end, I'd love to do films, but I'm not going to work just to do work. I only want to do something that I feel right about."
Art of being Amanda Bynes
Kiss And Tell: "Having a boyfriend on TV is sort of weird because you are being intimate with someone you don't even know... Sometimes it can be awkward!"
What This Girl Wants: "It's hard being 17 years old. Everybody else gets to go out and do all these fun things, and I have to be home at 10 p.m."
Behind Closed (Dressing Room) Doors: "Leslie Grossman (Val's wild co-worker) has the most popular dressing room on the set right now. That's where all the guys hang out."
Puppy Love: "I'm not a big fan of online surfing. Sometimes, I check out what fans have done for me, which is flattering, but mostly, Jennie and I use the Internet to look for [purebred] puppies. Jennie's been thinking about getting a dog and I guess I'm helping her shop."
Memo From The Drama Department: "I'm kind of over the Lucille Ball comedy stuff. It's fun to fall over a couch or whatever but what I want is longevity. I want to try different things. Something really dark and edgy would be nice."
It was a good growing up experience for Amanda
What I Like About You star Amanda Bynes talks about her new movie What A Girl Wants, the thrill of traveling 3,000 miles from home, what she thinks of British culture and how it felt to be recognized by 500 English school kids.
The WB: How did your first big trip to London turn out?
Amanda: "It was amazing. It was my first time on my own, really. I would walk around the city and go to the park and go shopping. I was staying in the Piccadilly area of London, which is fairly close to everything. It was definitely a good growing experience for me."
The WB: What did you miss the most from home?
Amanda: "The food! I'm so picky anyway, so it was really hard for me. Everything is buttered there. They have these afternoon snacks which consist of small sandwiches like butter with cucumber. Personally, I'm not into that. I was definitely craving Mrs. Fields' cookies. They just don't have the type of cookies that we have here. Their candy is different too ... even the M&Ms taste different."
The WB: What did you learn about British culture when you were over there?
Amanda: "I was surprised to discover that they like the same music, dress the same. We have a lot in common, I think. The biggest difference is the driving on the other side. That gave me a headache!"
The WB: Did you ever get recognized?
Amanda: "Yeah, while we were doing a scene on the Millennium Bridge in London, a student outing of about 500 kids happened to walk past. Some kid recognized me and started shouting my name, 'Amanda!' Then the rest of them starting doing it, too. It was pretty overwhelming trying to do this scene when I'm hearing all these people screaming 'Amanda!'"
The WB: How was it performing all those pratfalls in the movie?
Amanda: "I hit my head a lot and fell over - a lot!"
The WB: What made you want to do this movie?
Amanda: "The script seemed really cute, but I didn't know if it was right for me. Then I heard that Colin [Firth] was interested in doing it and I started to change my mind. I wanted to work with him so badly and I was shocked that he would even be near me, let alone do a movie with me."
Amanda Bynes on Jamie Kennedy Experiment - Season 3 DVD set
The Jamie Kennedy Experiment ended it's run of new shows this past April, after 3 seasons on The WB, and DVD distributor Paramount is wasting no time in bringing you the box set for the final run of episodes. JKX: The Jamie Kennedy Experiment - Season 3 is already slated to hit DVD on January 25th.
Season 3 of the popular series features guest stars Amanda Bynes, Holly Robinson Peete, Anthony Anderson, Paul lo Duca, Pauley Shore, Donny Osmond, Carmen Electra and Kathie Lee Gifford, among others who team up with the hilarious Jamie Kennedy as they pull pranks on unsuspecting people. A 3-disc set will include all 21 original episodes, plus special features exclusive to the DVD such as the "Second Marks with introductions by Jamie Kennedy" bonus.
Did Amanda Bynes have girl power ?
Not long ago all the cool girls had pigtails and sass. Young girl power was personified by one-dimensional characters or for some reason, chicks with P-names. ``Inspector Gadget's'' Penny always was one step ahead of her uncle when it came to foiling Dr. Claw; Pippi Longstocking personally annoyed me but other girls liked her; oh, and Punky Brewster Power all the way! I had the Punky doll, jean jacket and all.
Then, the P-name all-stars were replaced by girls with big brains. Six LeMeure was cooler, but Blossom had the boyfriend. Topanga on ``Boy Meets World'' had great hair. Also, Jesse Spano was smarter than the rest of her Bayside High School gang. I concede I can still recognize a ``Saved by the Bell'' episode in record time.
Today, girls' mainstream role models are a little different. The girls toting girl power now include Lindsay Lohan, Amanda Bynes, Mandy Moore and Hilary Duff. I guess because they're in movies and on television. They have highlights, budding music careers, their own makeup lines and dolls sold at Target, err Targjö. They date one another's pop-star boyfriends and squabble over who dumped him first. They're everywhere, acting and singing and dancing, or at least trying to. These girls must be 2004's equivalent to my favorite chicks.
But they're not the same. They try to one-up each other, and often stretch their professional limits ... except for Miss Moore, being ``filled with Christ's love'' and all (yay ``Saved!'' fans). However, they'd probably drink Pabst's (which is quality) before they'd wear pigtails, and their sitcoms don't really compare to those of 10 years ago.
Or maybe we just inevitably like what we grew up with, best?
That's probably true. My mom's generation had the movie ``Gidget'' starring Sandra Dee, and the television spin-off featuring Sally Field. And her ``Parent Trap'' starred Hayley Mills in 1961 (also, coincidentally, of early ``Saved by the Bell'' episodes), rather than Lindsay Lohan in 1998.
Rather than try to do one to two professional endeavors well, however, everyone feels like they have to be a triple threat these days, like they have to be ready for the musical they're going to make, even though Baz Luhrman-like productions (``Moulin Rouge'') are few and far between.
It's a tribute to past triple-threat, power women I guess -… Judy Garland, Audrey Hepburn, Ann Margaret and others. Old Hollywood was just like that. Everyone did everything and if someone couldn't quite hit her high-note, it wasn't a problem because there were backup singers. Modern movies don't allot the same support.
Today, our young stars promote their triple talents in a generation that's not so dependent on them. There are triple talents (Bebe Neuwirth, Sarah Jessica Parker, etc.). They normally go Broadway at one point or another, but they give themselves a few more years to get there. They do one art well for awhile before branching out, and that might be the right avenue for girl power-types, too.
Amanda Bynes as a role model
Think about it—if you modeled your life after one of the shows on The WB, you’d be really messed up. Despite the seemingly entertaining, even addicting, nature of The WB’s programming, it’s ultimately all a bunch of hoo-ha. That’s Texan for crap—it’s all a bunch of crap.
There’s no way that anyone’s life marginally resembles a single WB television show, which leads to an entire list of reasons as to why you wouldn’t want your real life to parallel the lives suggested in the WB shows.
Aspiring to live like they do on “7th Heaven,” which is currently in it’s ninth season, wouldn’t get you past cloud one. What will it be like for you when you have 90 kids (OK, 7) of your own, have adopted half the street-brats in town and are living in a ginormous house which is funded solely by your soulmate-Rev.-husband’s salary (which I guarantee you can’t be that beefy) because you’ve been pregnant with his kids for the majority of your adult life?
Having this many kids says but one thing: You’re trying to start your own army—an army of freaks.
“Gilmore Girls,” on the other hand, encourages you to aspire to have a super-best-friend relationship with your mother, in which you toss witty remarks back and forth all day. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to be best friends with your mom, however, the next time you do something stupid and end up in a lot of trouble, I highly doubt that the problem will be calmly discussed over a steamy, oversized cup of coffee.
She’s your mother, so if you tell her that you’ve decided to drop out of college to become a stripper because you feel much more comfortable taking your clothes off than you do taking midterms and finals, expect a beating.
Speaking of beatings, out of all the WB’s programming, “What I Like About You,” is what I like about least about the WB. Whoever it was that made the unsupervised, executive, unilateral decision to cast Amanda Bynes as the lead in a sitcom should be shot and turned into glue.
The premise of the show is that two sisters, Holly Tyler (Bynes) and Valerie Tyler (Jennie Garth) push the limits of their sisterly bond by joining up as roommates—which is a totally understandable concept. It’s all of the other outrageous elements of the show combined that makes for a ludicrous waste of an hour of your life. For instance, Byne’s character is currently involved with a hot European rock star named Ben (David De Lautour) whom she met while she was in Europe.
It seems that it’s hard enough for teenagers, or really anyone for that matter, to establish a worthwhile relationship with normal people—hot European rockstars aside.
Why establish a relatively unobtainable framework for dating to the show’s actual audience as opposed to its target audience. I promise you that there are more 13 year old girls watching “What I Like About You”—the same girls who paid to see Bynes’ big-screen film, “What a Girl Wants”—than there are 18 year old girls.
Yet the WB distorting up our perception of reality, especially how it applies to our relationships with other people – from familial to romantic – isn’t a new concept. Take “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “Dawson’s Creek” and “Felicity” for instance.
As a whole, the WB makes no attempt to provide programming that is tangible to real-life or reality in general. Granted, television is supposed to be entertaining, it’s difficult to accept whatever morals or messages the network sets forth when they’re being handed to us by kids on creeks or a girl with a stake.
Furthermore, the WB unrealistically features only thirty-something or twenty-something individuals as role models. Lorelai Gilmore of “Gilmore Girls” represents a thirty-something mother while Garth of “What I Like About You” represents a twenty-something older sister. How are these individuals supposed to serve as role models when their role is inherently unclear—where it’s hard to determine why we should look up to them and their experiences when it’s impossible to even discern how long they themselves have been out of high school? Therefore, modeling aspects of your life like those characters found on the WB is like committing yourself to an infinite never-never land.