AOL Live chat with Frankie
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How has the cast reacted to the amazing ratings the pilot episode received?
We were all really happy. I guess it's like a dream come true. You never know what to expect. Me and my mom were jumping on the bed.

Tonight we are chatting with Frankie Muniz from the new hit series "Malcolm in the Middle" and the upcoming film "My Dog Skip." Welcome, Frankie! Thanks for coming tonight!
Thanks for having me. Hi, everyone.

I read the recent article in Entertainment Weekly and thought it was interesting that you didn't think you got the role. Any thoughts on that?
Well, the reason I didn't think I got it was I was the oldest one there. The other kids were 9 and 13, and I didn't think I got it. We were back at the hotel, and two minutes later I got the call. It was so cool. We were jumping on the bed.

Hi, Frankie -- I think you have a real gift for comic timing. Where did you develop such a talent at such a young age?
I'm not really sure. This is going to sound braggy, but I guess it's just natural. I've never taken an acting class and no one in my family has acted. I guess it's just good writing, I guess.

Question: Hi there. I saw the premiere episode and I thought it was great! What town is the show set in?
There is no set town yet, but Linwood Boomer, the creator, doesn't want to give a set town. If we put it in the South, there is no snow; in the North can't be 110 degrees. It isn't set yet, but will be soon.

Frankie -- hey there! How are you similar to the character of Malcolm?
This is going to sound really weird again. Before I auditioned, I hadn't read the script. I didn't know he was a genius or that the family was weird. I was just myself. I think me and Malcolm are pretty close, but I'm not a genius.

Frankie, what is it like working with the other cast members on "Malcolm in the Middle"?
Everyone is great. Bryan and Jane are the nicest people I've ever worked with. They're funny. And the boys are always hanging out and everyone is cool.

Have you ever had to put up with a bully?
I guess so. I'm very small for my age. When I was little, I'd always get picked on. I never let it bother me. If I did try to get back, it would just keep them going. I just ignored them and eventually they just stopped. I haven't been beat up yet.

Hi, Frankie, has life changed for you since you've been on the show?
I really don't believe me reaching the "fame" yet. It's so hard to believe. People have come up to me and are saying they love the show. I can tell who my real friends are because they are just coming up to me now and saying letís hang out. I know who my true friends are because they don't care about me acting.

Are you in the middle in real life?
No. I'm the end child. I have one sister. She's older.

Were your parents supportive in your decision to become an actor?
My mom and dad were really supportive. I saw my sister in a play in North Carolina. She auditioned for a part in Raleigh for "A Christmas Carol." I tried out too, and got the part of Tiny Tim. They left it up to me, if I want to stop or keep going. They're really supportive of me. I'm going to keep going as long as I want to.

I know you have been in a couple movies and shows, but what was your favorite and what will be your next show?
I guess it's a tie between "Spin City," "Malcolm in the Middle" and "My Dog Skip." On "Spin City," I got to meet one of my favorite actors, Michael J. Fox. On "My Dog Skip," I got to meet Kevin Bacon; and "Malcolm," because it's different. Coming up next is "The Miracle in Lane 2" for Disney Channel. I'm going to play a kid with spina bifida. It's going to be really fun. I get to race soapbox derby.

Frankie, what do you like to do in your spare time?
Well, I'm a big golfer. I just love to be a normal kid. I do everything a normal kid would do. I play sports, hang out with my friends, and go to the movies.

Frankie, I love the show! Can you tell me what upcoming episodes will be about?
There is one episode, one of my favorites, called "Francis Escapes." He escapes out of military school to see his girlfriend. It's really hilarious. Most of the stories are true to the writers. Linwood Boomer is actually Malcolm. There is one episode called "Shane." Itís about a bully that keeps ridiculing Malcolm, and he beats him up.

Frankie, can you tell us if you have an e-mail address so that fans can write you, or a way we can receive a signed picture? Thanks!

Hi, do you hang out with the other cast members off the set?
Yeah, actually, me and Chris go play paintball. And the little boy who plays Dewey, we live next door to each other, he would sleep over and we would watch movies. It was a lot of fun.

Which actors and actresses do you like?
Kevin Bacon and Michael J. Fox. Bryan Cranston and Jane Kaczmarek.

Hey, Frankie! Say, do you have a girlfriend by any chance?
I don't right now. The reason is because I don't think it would be fair for the girl because I'm traveling so much. Maybe eventually, when I get moved into my place in California.

How has the cast reacted to the amazing ratings the pilot episode received?
We were all really happy. I guess it's like a dream come true. You never know what to expect. Me and my mom were jumping on the bed. We had a party the night before. Everyone was cracking up. It's really awesome.

Is it really hard to deal with the pressures of the media and all of the attention?
In the middle. It's a lot of fun. It's cool.

Question: What was your favorite part of the first show?
I guess the way it ends when I'm sitting on the trash can and wrapping the episode, and when Dewey goes, " A bug went up my nose," and I say, "What do you want me to do about it?" I wanted them to do a sum-it-up in each episode, but we won't.

How much time do you spend on the set?
I'm only allowed to be on the set for 9 1/2 hours due to California labor laws. I love being on set. I hate having a day off when I'm filming a movie. I only had one day off then. I loved it. It's just so much fun working on the set. I know some people don't really like that. Actually, it's only 6 1/2 hours and 3 hours of school.

Hey, Frankie, which do you prefer doing, making TV shows or motion pictures?
I really like both. I don't really see a difference. I do see that the process of filming is faster. We film like ten scenes in a day in TV, while we do two scenes in a day for a movie. With TV, we do it a few times and we got it. They are both really fun. I love acting. They are both really cool.

What do you like most about acting?
I guess just meeting new people on the set and playing different characters. It's really cool to play the different parts. It's just really fun.

Thanks, Frankie, for talking with us! We had a great time and hope you can do this again soon!
I'd love to. Goodbye, everyone. Hope you keep watching the show, and go see the movie when it comes out in your area. Keep watching.