Latina.com chatted with Modern Family's 12-year-old scene-stealer, Rico Rodriguez about last week’s Emmy Awards, his new fashion line, and what’s coming up for his character, Manny on season two of ABC’s hit comedy, Modern Family.
Congratulations on winning Best Comedy at the Emmy’s! Were you surprised that your show won?
We wanted to keep our expectations low so that if we didn’t win we wouldn’t be sad or discouraged. But when they said, Modern Family—I ran off and started hugging people. I can’t even put into words how excited I was that we won. I’m hoping to get nominated next year because that’s the biggest honor in the world!
Did you like the dress that your TV mom, Sofia Vergara wore to the Emmy’s?
Any dress that Sofia—or any of the ladies wear— is beautiful because they’re beautiful!
Who designed your sharp-looking suit?
It was made by the top designers in the world—my mom and my sister! I liked it because it was hot, and when I get hot my face looks like a big old apple. The hat covered all the way to the tip of my nose, so it covered my ears. I felt cool.
Rumor has it you have your own clothing line?
It’s a clothing line for plus sized and middle-sized people—all of those people who can’t find clothes. My entire family is involved with the line: my mom, my dad, my sister, my two older brothers, some of my cousins and me. It’s hard for us to find clothes in our size so we thought, ‘how about we just make our own clothes?’ You’ll see the website out soon.
What’s coming up for your character, Manny on the new season of Modern Family?
I sort of have a steady date with a girl. It’s going to be really funny. And I’m going to be involved with an earthquake—I’m going to have a spiritual awakening, so to speak.
Manny is very romantic—do you think he’s too obsessed with love for his age?
He’s a very old soul. He’s not like normal kids who play video games—he reads the newspaper, drinks cappuccinos, reads romance novels, and chases women. Manny thinks he can smooth talk a woman, but he can’t. My inspiration for Manny is Antonio Banderas. He’s like Antonio, but he can’t get any girl he wants.
Are there any drawbacks to being a child star?
I guess standing on my feet a long time sometimes and memorizing my lines. But everything is happening so fast and I love it. If I weren’t doing this, I’d be sitting at home doing nothing.
Why do you love being Latino?
I love that George Lopez, Eva Longoria Parker, and America Ferrera are bringing Latinos into Hollywood because I’m Latino. We’re starting to take over!
Watch the premiere of ABC's Modern Family Wed 9/22 at 9/8c!