“Being an actress isn’t as fun as it may seem. If I don’t love something anymore, I stop doing it. I don’t love acting anymore, so I’ve stopped doing it. I’ve never written the movies and TV shows I’ve been a part of. I’ve only acted like the characters the producers or directors wanted me to play.” – Amanda Bynes via her private Twitter account, June 2010
The retirement tweet created nearly as much drama as the third act of “Sydney White.” By the end of the summer, however, Amanda announced she had “unretired” while promoting “Easy A,” which she stars alongside Emma Stone. The obvious bitterness in the tweet over both Hollywood and her career was an interesting twist to the mostly squeaky clean ex-Nickelodeon star. Perhaps there is more going on behind the scenes than we know. Perhaps Amanda Bynes is looking for more.
A native of the San Fernando Valley, Amanda Bynes was born in 1986 to a dentist and a dental assistant. Her dad dabbled somewhat in standup comedy and Amanda honed her mug faces at an early age that would dominate her Nickelodeon career and run its course with her big screen vehicles of the late 2000s. She was only ten when she joined the cast of “All That,” the sketch comedy show on Nickelodeon. By 1999, she had her own show, aptly titled “The Amanda Show,” which ran until 2002, the same year “Amanda Show” creator Dan Schneider managed to package “Big Fat Liar” with Bynes and Frankie Muniz for Universal that ultimately grosses $52 million.
By 16, Amanda Bynes had the world at her feet, or at least the Nickelodeon world. At the same time, she was guest starring on “The Drew Carey Show,” providing the voice of Taffy on “Rugrats,” starring in the 2003 film “What a Girl Wants,” and landing the co-lead role alongside Jennie Garth on “What I Like About You,” a WB comedy series that ran until 2006. This was also created by Dan Schneider (and Wil Calhoun). Following the series’ conclusion, Bynes decided to move away from Schneider’s sitcoms and into features.
“She’s the Man” was release in March 2006, just as Amanda was credited as one of the “25 Hottest Stars Under 25” by Teen People. Loosely inspired by Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night,” the film made over $57 million at the box office, no doubt buoyed by Amanda’s Nickelodeon followers (and Shakespeare devotees). Amanda followed “She’s the Man” by co-starring in the big screen adaptation of the stage musical, “Hairspray” (which was itself adapted from the John Waters film of the same name), and in the fall of 2007, starred in “Sydney White.” The film grossed merely $13 million in the domestic box office.
Following the “Sydney White” debacle, Amanda Bynes made only a few appearances, voicing an episode of “Family Guy” in 2008 and starring in an unaired pilot called “Canned.” She was replaced by Alexis Bledel on “Post Grad” but managed to sign with Screen Gems for two pictures, one of which was “Easy A.”So it is safe to assess that Amanda Bynes is at a crossroads. As she approaches 25, she recognizes the Nickelodeon days are gone, that the recycled starring roles of “She’s the Man” and “Sydney White” have passed, and that the easy successes are no longer. But these aren’t bad things. She has the opportunity to really transform and whether she wants to admit it or not, the time is now.
Amanda on the Web
Amanda’s ultimate web resource guide.
TV Guide: Amanda Bynes
News, photos, TV listings and video clips.
Detailed bio with emphasis on career.
Amanda’s music page with demos of her own songs.
Fansite with over 5,000 pictures.
2007 interview with Amanda and Elijah Kelly on “Hairspray.”
Amanda on Video
Maxim Cover Shoot
Behind the scenes look at Amanda’s 2010 cover shoot.
“She’s the Man” Interview
Amanda talks about making “She’s the Man.”
ClevverTV “Easy A” Interview
Amanda talks about her character Marianne.
Amanda on the Screen
Her debut was on “All That” in 1996, and she guest starred on “Arli$$,” “The Drew Carey Show” and “The Nightmare Room” in addition to headlining “The Amanda Show” from 1999-2002. Along with leading roles in “What a Girl Wants,” “She’s the Man,” and “Sydney White,” she also appears in “Hairspray” and “Easy A” and has lent her voice to movies like “Charlotte’s Web 2” and “Robots,” and TV shows like “Family Guy.”
“There is nothing less attractive than a guy who is a jerk and has an ego.”
On little matters:
“I'm a positive person. People should find happiness in the little things, like family.”