The young actor talks about the movie, playing Sharkboy and working with Robert Rodriguez
Today MovieWeb talked with 13 year old wunderkind Taylor Lautner. Star of Robert Rodriguez's digital extravaganza The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D, and playing the titular role of Sharkboy, Lautner, already an accomplished martial artist, appears to have a very bright future in front of him. Eager to discuss his role as Sharkboy, working with Rodriguez and why he loves acting, Taylor Lautner was both poised and highly enthusiastic when he spoke with us.
Why did you want to be Sharkboy?
Taylor Lautner: Well, because I got to be a superhero and everything’s fun when you get to be a superhero. You get to do a lot of stunts... and lots of kids love doing stunts because you get to do wirework, and you get to do a lot of fun stuff on mats and stuff. And also because I got to wear a cool suit, and that suit was very awesome. So there’s lots of cool reasons for being a superhero.
Who is your favorite superhero?
Taylor Lautner: My favorite superhero would probably be Spider-Man, because I love the movies and he’s really cool in the movies.
How did you feel when you got the role of Sharkboy? What did you do to celebrate?
Taylor Lautner: Well, we were very excited when we found out I got the role of Sharkboy. I think we went out to dinner to celebrate, we went out with friends and I had a surprise at a restaurant with some friends. And we were all very excited when we found out. We couldn’t sleep!
Did you try and bring your martial arts background to the more physical parts of playing Sharkboy?
Taylor Lautner: When I auditioned for the film, Robert Rodriguez, the director, didn’t know that I had my martial arts [background], and while we there in Austin, TX he saw a DVD of me and asked me to choreograph my own fight scenes. So I used all my martial arts to do stuff on the greenscreen, and he said, “If it works then he can put it in the movie and if not not.” But he loved it, so, using his magical powers, he put those people who I was fighting in and it worked just like I was fighting those plugs with my martial arts.
What was it like working with Robert Rodriguez and had you been a fan of his films before you started working together?
Taylor Lautner: Well, I was a big fan of the Spy Kids movies, and I’d heard lots of good things about Robert; that he was fun to be around. And when I went there, to Austin,TX to film the movie, I understood everything, because Robert is like the coolest and nicest director you’ll ever meet. He plays video games with us kids and he’s so nice to us. He has all of his family there on set and it was just a great experience there filming, The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D.
Now that you’ve played a superhero... what would be the ultimate movie for you to be in?
Taylor Lautner: Probably now that I did a kids film being a superhero, I think it would be great to film a movie more drama-ish. More like a drama movie and more serious than The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D, but of course doing those kinds of movies like The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D are a lot, A LOT of fun to shoot.
It seemed like it. Especially how they showed part of your audition on the DVD where you were on the ground and gave a kick or whatever you were doing...
Taylor Lautner: Yeah, they showed that on the DVD. It showed me and Taylor Dooley who plays Lavagirl. It showed a little part of our audition on the DVD and that was really cool to see that.
How come you want to be an actor?
Taylor Lautner: I love acting because you get to play a role that you never get to play in real life. I’ve played lots of bully roles and I’m never a bully in real life, so it’s cool to play someone totally opposite from yourself. So I tried acting and I fell in love with it, so I kept pursuing it and then I got Sharkboy, and then I did Cheaper by the Dozen 2, so it’s going well.
Who is your favorite actor?
Taylor Lautner: My favorite actor is... well, I probably have a lot. I love Tom Cruise
What is your favorite movie?
Taylor Lautner: My favorite movie is The Last Samurai.
What is it about that movie that makes it your favorite?
Taylor Lautner: I like all the action in the movie and how there’s lots of fighting. And I like how it shows the traditional fighting way... back when the Samurai’s and Japanese are fighting. I like how it shows all the different kinds of fighting. It made me, while I was watching the movie, it put me right in the moment with them. It was just this weird feeling and I loved it.
What’s next for you?
Taylor Lautner: Well, I just got back about a month ago from shooting Cheaper by the Dozen 2, and that will be out December 21st of 2005. Now we have some things in the works, we’re not sure about anything yet, but there’s a couple of movies that we’re working on but we’re not sure yet.
The Adventures of Shark Boy and Lava Girl in 3D is out on DVD this week.
Dont't forget to also check out: Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl