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Kidsday talks with actor Cody Linley

We met with 20-year-old actor Cody Linley who stars as Jake Ryan on the Disney TV show, “Hannah Montana,” when he was in Manhattan recently.

Are you like your character in any way?

I guess I’m like my character in the fact that I like to talk to people a lot and Jake Ryan is a very, very good people person. He’s a little more big headed than I am I could say because he’s such a big TV star that you know certain things he doesn’t get involved in but, I would say I’m a little more down to earth.
How old were you when you started acting?

I was actually 4 years old. I did an commercial for Ruby Tuesday’s and my mom gave me $20 at the end of the shoot and she said, here you earned this and so I went to Toys ’R Us and I got four action figures and I was so excited because I got to be on TV. I had a good day and then I also got paid to do it. That was when I knew I wanted to be an actor and ever since then I’ve been acting and I’ve done over a dozen movies and I got to be in a video game called the Hardy Boys video game and now I’m going to be on Broadway.

Do you have a trick for remembering lines?

Yes. A trick for remembering lines. I highlight my lines when I first get them and then I rehearse them and I work on them. I read them out loud and then to remember them I don’t know, I just trust myself and I remember them.
What was my hardest to learn on “Dancing with the Stars”?

The salsa because it’s muy caliente, hot, and it’s suppose to be very fluid and shake your hips and move your body. It was just really hard to figure it out. I’m a basketball player so I like jump around, but the salsa is more about like squirming around.
How long did you have to practice for “Dancing with the Stars”?

I practiced 10 hours a day, six days a week for three months. It was a lot of work but it was also a real fun experience. I didn’t have school at the time, so I got to have free time at night with my buddies.
Do you disguise yourself like when you go somewhere like a public restaurant?

Sometimes I wear hats and sunglasses to cover my face whatever as a disguise. But for the most part I just don’t worry about it. Because sometimes people will recognize me and I’m not afraid to talk to fans and stuff like that.
How did you feel on your first show?

For “Hannah Montana’s” very first show I was extremely nervous and excited at the same time. We had a live audience so they started chanting Miley’s name and jumping up and down and screaming and I was just like, I couldn’t believe the support that the fans had and it made me so happy to be there because everyone was happy to be there. I did a really good performance and afterwards everyone clapped and stuff and we got to take a bow. It was pretty cool, because I love performing.
Were you mad when they poured the milkshake on your head during one of the episodes?

Oh my gosh. I was pretty excited because on that show people get pies in the face; they get chocolate shakes on their head. Everything like that. So I thought it was kind of a fun opportunity because when I was a young kid I always wanted to get slimed. You know how they have the orange slime or is it green? It was kind of like getting slimed for me.

Did you have a good childhood?

Yeah I had a good childhood. My mom was really supportive; my dad was really helpful. I played sports growing up. I went to a public school. I got all A’s in middle school, all A’s in elementary school and then I got A’s and B’s in high school. So I was a pretty good student and I had a great time.
What was your favorite subject in school?

My favorite subject in school was actually math. That’s why I like it. It’s really easy for me.
Do you play an instrument?

I do. I play a guitar and I sing and I also beat box. And I love to play the keyboards and piano. I love music so it’s one of the most fun things to do.
Do you have a bodyguard?

Sometimes when I go to big events like a hockey game or a basketball game. They’re security because of so many screaming fans, lots of girls sometimes. I don’t know why it’s always girls, but it happens. Sometimes I got a bodyguard but for the most part like when I’m in Texas or if I’m in California I just walk around, skateboard, go to the park, play basketball and nobody cares. It’s just like, oh hey, there’s that guy from “Hannah Montana.”
What other famous people do you know?

I don’t know. I met the Jonas Brothers once. Other people think that’s kind of cool. They’re really, really nice guys. One of my good friends is Aaron Carter. I don’t know if you ever listened to his music? You should. He’s a good singer.
When you were first started in the business, did your friends act differently?

No, no. Most of my friends I have are from middle school and elementary school now. I remember my friends all the time and my new friends like Miley and people like that I stay in touch with. It’s important to stay close to friends and family.
When you were little, did you think you would be famous?

No. I didn’t think I was going to be famous, but I knew I wanted to be in show business. I didn’t know where I would fit in, but I’m really excited to be labeled a celebrity sometimes. It’s a fun gig because a lot of people who are watching you to see what you do and I want to be able to bring positive like happy thoughts to people. I don’t want to be involved in like nasty gross things. I want to be involved with fun stuff.

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