Lucas Cruikshank became a web celeb when the Nebraska native started his YouTube channel FRED three years ago. In that time, FRED has become the No. 1 subscribed site in YouTube history with over 303 million views and over 1.3 million subscribers!
The success of FRED landed Lucas roles on iCarly and upcoming episode of Hannah Montana. On top of all that, the 16-year-old has scored his first feature film as the title role of Emo Boy, a movie based on the popular comic series!
In our exclusive interview, Lucas opens up to us about his dreams of becoming an actor, filming a FRED movie and what Miley Cyrus is really like. Check out what he had to say below!
JSYK: How do you come up with the ideas for FRED?
Lucas Cruikshank: Actually, now that I've done so many videos, it's getting harder to come up with new ideas, but I just usually brainstorm while I'm listening to music, or ideas just come to me. It isn't that hard, but it can be when you have so many videos.
JSYK: Did you start the channel thinking it would ever get this big?
Lucas: No, actually I didn't. I started the channel just planning on making a few people laugh. It turned out it got a ton of people who passed it onto their friends and it kind of spread like wild fire. I was so surprised -- I did not expect that at all.
JSYK: You said you always wanted to be in actor. Did you start FRED thinking it would be a way to get into that world?
Lucas: No, actually I didn't. I'd always wanted to be an actor like you said, but I never thought that FRED would be the way that I'd be able to have that dream come true, but luckily it did. YouTube was just starting out when i started posting video, so I never really knew it could lead to success or anything. I just thought it was all just for fun.
JSYK: Well, that's the best way to start.
Lucas: Yeah, definitely. Well, some people start their music channels just trying to get subscribers and all that, and that's definitely not the way to go.
JSYK: So your dreams have essentially come true, and you're crossing over to Film/TV now. You're appearing on iCarly and you taped an upcoming episode of Hannah Montana. Can you tell us about your character on that show?
Lucas: Filming Hannah was awesome, because Miley Cyrus is like the biggest thing out there, so it was really cool to get to work with her, and meet her and get her advice and everything. The episode is about me and Hannah doing a voiceover movie together. I don't play Fred, so its doing a whole new character, which is awesome.
JSYK: How was it meeting Miley Cyrus? Was she cool?
Lucas: Yeah, she was really nice and cool. At first, I was nervous to meet them all. I never imagined I'd get to meet them, but they were all really nice and down to earth, and it was really easy to work with them.
JSYK: Can you tell us more about the Emo Boy and your role in it?
Lucas: I'm playing the main character, which I'm really excited about, but its also kind of scary being the lead character in your first movie. It's about an emo boy and his one friend and their journey through high school. At the end, it shows how his character develops and realizes that life isn't so hard. It's kind of a dramedy -- it's dramatic, but really funny, too!
JSYK: When is that coming out?
Lucas: Actually, I haven't started filming that. The next project I'm gonna film is the FRED movie, which we're starting to film in November, so I'm really excited about that. I'll probably start filming Emo Boy in early 2010 or summer of 2010.
JSYK: What can you tell us about the FRED movie?
Lucas: It's going to be really cool because in the videos, all you see is Fred, so it will be really cool for the fans to see the whole entire world of Fred and all the other characters. They're going to see the real-life Judy, the real-life mom and all that. They go on this journey and I think it will have a lot of funny things in it that the fans will really like.
JSYK: How much longer do you think you'll be doing the FRED YouTube channel?
Lucas: I'm not sure. I definitely don't want to be doing it forever because obviously the character can only go on for so long. I want to be able to branch out and do other things and not just be branded as the FRED guy. I want to be able to be versatile and do a bunch of different roles. I definitely don't want to be doing it over 18 -- I'm 16 now -- so a good two years? I'm really not sure.