Everybody Hates Chris's: Tyler James Williams
updated 10/17/2005 AT 01:00 AM EDT
•originally published 10/17/2005 AT 01:00 AM EDT
Unlike his constantly bullied character, "I was popular in school," says Williams, who started acting at 4 on Sesame Street and later appeared on Law & Order: SVU (as a boy in need of a kidney transplant) and Saturday Night Live (once, as guest host Jack Black's son). "When kids tried to pick on me, I always had one line to shoot them down with: 'I make more money in a week than you'll make in your entire life.' Which probably wasn't true, but they thought it was."
Like Chris, "I know what it's like to be the oldest," says Williams, whose siblings Tyrel, 8 (also an actor), and Tylen, 3, share an apartment with him and their mom, Angela, near the sitcom's L.A. set. Their dad, Le'Roy, an NYPD sergeant, remains home in Westchester with Tyler's terrier Benny "Ruff-neck" Williams. "I look at myself as the third parent. One day I told my brothers, 'No more candy' They said, 'We want something sweet.' So I made them suck on lemons."
"I have a saying: I'm good for three things: making fried bologna sandwiches, making money and picking out good movies. Last night, I made fried bologna sandwiches for the whole family, got a paycheck and picked out a movie." (His choice: Napoleon Dynamite.)
Williams declares Rock "an awesome comedian. He's also a husband and a daddy. One time we were doing an interview together and Chris stopped it because his little girl called. I think that was the best thing in the world."