Born on April 3, 1986 in Thousand Oaks, California, Amanda Bynes is an American actress and singer, as well as a former show host on Nickelodeon. The youngest of three children, she became interested in performing at the age of three.
In 1996, Amanda Bynes made her acting debut when she auditioned for and got the role as a newcomer on the comedy series All That. She gained popularity as Ashley in the sketch “Ask Ashley.” In 1998, she was trained by Arsenio Hall and Richard Pryor at a comedy camp. When she was seven, her professional acting career began to flourish. She appeared on a commercial for Buncha Crunch candies, as well as being on several stage productions. She was in versions of Annie, The Sound of Music and The Secret Garden as a child. She eventually became a regular cast member on the Nickelodeon shows All That and Figure It Out until All That was cancelled in 2000. She next became the host of her own variety show The Amanda Show in 1999, also on Nickelodeon. It was a combination of comical skits and sketches which feature her as the star.
Bynes’ first feature film was 2002’s Big Fat Liar, where she starred alongside Frankie Muniz and Paul Giamatti. The next year, she starred as the lead character Daphne Reynolds in the family film What a Girl Wants. While filming the movie, she was cast as Holly Tyler in The WB sitcom What I Like About You opposite Jenny Garth. She also lent her voice to the animated comedy film Robots, with Ewan McGregor, Drew Carey, Robin Williams and Greg Kinnear. Her next film was Love Wrecked, and she also starred in 2006’s She’s the Man. The film was loosely based on the William Shakespeare work Twelfth Night. In 2007, she was given the role of Penny Pingleton in the adaptation of the Broadway musical Hairspray. The ensemble comedy also stars John Travolta, Michelle Pfeiffer and Zac Efron. Bynes was also in that year’s Sydney White, which is based on the story of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.
"The first time I got the script, it said "The Amanda Show" (1999) on it. I thought they were kidding. I'm still little Amanda, and to be getting my own show, it's like, oh, my gosh!" - at age 13
It was my first season of "All That" (1994). Kenan Thompson and I were playing ping- pong in this scene, and we were supposed to collide heads. As we were falling down, I hit myself in the lip with the paddle. I looked down and saw a puddle of blood, and I had to be rushed to the studio hospital with a swollen lip. My friend was like, 'Don't worry, Amanda. It doesn't look too bad you know, thousands of women pay [for collagen injections] to have their lips that big.
I'm the type of person who believes that everything happens for a reason, and at the time that it's supposed to. So now...other ideas are coming up for other movies and everything is just happening really wonderfully.
People don't recognize I'm getting older. They see reruns of "All That" (1994) so they assume I'm ten years old. I'm 16. I'm almost 5' 8". I'm driving now.
I'm a positive person. People should find happiness in the little things, like family.
I think my parents are a big part of that because I'm still a normal kid. Like there are times I get frustrated because I want to wear certain shoes and they don't want me to wear them. It's all good in the end because I realize that there will be a time and place for high shoes.
I want to be looked at as an adult actress. That's why I didn't want to do a big movie when I was 11. I was waiting till I was a little bit older.
Whatever is meant to be will be and you just have to trust that things happen for a reason. It's made handling disappointments that much easier because I just remember my mom's words and know that something better is meant to come my way.
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.'
I want to be known for the work I've done, as opposed to where I go on Saturday nights...I like to let loose just like anyone else, but I don't want to be photographed doing it.
I love movies that have a good story. I love movies that make you feel good about yourself but I also love movies that make you walk away thinking about them. I like things that have, you know, something to them.
Every person is so different and I don't think there is an exact match for every person. If you meet someone and they have 20 of the 25 things you want in a person, then you're pretty lucky.
Going to another country you're not in your house, you're with people you've never met before, and I think it's definitely a good growing experience.
I don't like being compared to anyone or being in a class with someone. I'm a teen actress and therefore I'm competing against Hilary Duff. We're different people like everyone else.
I get a script and it's really interesting with scripts, because you never really know. It's paper and it could be great or awful. Even scripts that are good could end up not working.
I like the dress-up part. In real life, I'm into sweats and never like that, but I do like to get dressed up--like most girls.
People have a preconceived notion about who I am and it's interesting. It's like picking who you want to win for the Oscars and not seeing the movie.
We try to magnify the difference between Americans and the English. In real life they like the same music and dress the same. It's really much more similar than anyone thinks or how we show it.
I'm really excited about my life. You only get one and I want to enjoy it.
I'm so protected in my Nickelodeon bubble and "What I Like About You." It's all pretty much the same people I've worked with and it was pretty protected.
I loved Clueless (1995). That was one of my favorite movies of all time.
I'm so against it. People should strive to be happy with who they are and not be obsessed with how they look. Beauty is nothing
I enjoy doing things that are scary or things that some girls might not like because it won't let them look gorgeous. Like, in my new movie I play a boy, and every day they'd pin my hair back and I'd have no makeup. That's when you start relying more on your sense of humor.
I think every girl wants someone who is smart and funny, and I do too. But I want someone who is interesting. I mean, I want to be attracted to him, but beauty fades. There are many guys and girls who grew up being beautiful and never had to be smart or look hard for anything.
I think women look better and better as they get older, but there is some pressure on them to look a certain way. I personally think we should grow old gracefully. Like, my mum has great hair and it's beautiful. It looks natural.
(On college) "I knew that I wanted to be a performer of some sort, like an actress or a comedian, when I was really young, so I worked for that."
My whole family loves comedies. We're always laughing. I think I grew up sort of admiring comedians and I grew up watching the greats. And so my dad was really supportive of me doing this. And my mom was supportive, too. It just helped having a funny family.
I am doing the best I can and I don't want to ever be compared to somebody that great because then when someone sees me they'll say, 'No, she's not that good.' But I'm working hard and I hope that I can eventually live up to that title
(On her parents, Richard and Lynn) "I love them because they accept me for who I am and they love me with all my faults. I am so grateful for them. I want to be with them forever. This is a good time to tell you! I'm never leaving!"
I think I'll go out as much as I've ever gone out...which is not a lot. I like to dance and stuff, but drinking isn't good for you in every way. It's not good for your skin; it makes you feel horrible. So, drinking-wise, no.
When I was 15, I got a haircut from a famous hairstylist in L.A. She gave me a short shag. I'm a Jewish girl with curly hair. When it dried naturally, it was atrocious.
I don't feel like I belong to that world. The truth is, I'm happy in my little life. (On the Hollywood scene.)
There is nothing less attractive than a guy who is a jerk and has an ego.