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"In today's world, almost every kind of job or profession counts on computers to help make it better. The better you are with a computer, the greater your chance for success.
"If you treat your computer like a friend, with respect -
you'll be respecting yourself, and earn the respect of others."
Manny put his computer skills and work ethics to good use. "I graduated Clark Atlanta University in 1997, earning my degree in theater arts. It's not enough to be efficient in front of the camera if you want to create, produce and direct.
And that's what I'm all about."
Manny has had his own production company since 1985 - but he is currently turning his attention to recording. "I'm not sacrificing one for the other," he explains. "We're in the process of developing a television series and we also have several film projects in the works.
"But right now a great deal of my time is spent creating music with some exciting new groups and talent for my label.
I don't do anything half-heartedly. I put in 12-18 hour days
at the studio," he says referring to his recently converted guest house that is now a multi-million-dollar state-of-the-art recording complex.
"Manny is a perfectionist," says his brother Roscoe,
a respected recording engineer. "And his energy level is amazing." Brother, Chris Lewis, a well-known music video producer/director, agrees:
"I'm not saying this because he's my brother, but Manny
is a genius at balancing several projects at one time."
Life however is not all work for the New York-born 3-time People's Choice Award winner as Favorite Young Television Performer.
"I'm passionate about fishing," he states matter-of-factly.
"Deep sea, fresh water - you name it. I love it. And I have
('Webster' co-star) Alex Karras to thank for that.
"He took us out on his boat during the second season of the show. I caught four gigantic tuna. What a great time! The fish weren't the only things that got hooked that day.
"Would someday love to show Alex some fly casting," Manny adds smilingly.
An avid Atlanta Braves baseball fan, "maybe this year," he says hopefully - Manny knows many of the team members personally, on a first-name basis.
He's also earned a black belt in the martial arts, spending seven years studying Tae Kwon Do and Tae-Bo. "I love the discipline," Manny says, "I first became interested in martial arts in Japan."
Manny has never neglected his career. Besides doing guest appearances on television, he performed on the Tokyo Broadcasting Network in the mid-'90s. Also, he toured Canada and the US in '98 with his stand-up comedy act -
and often travels to Hollywood and New York to do TV.
"Manny is one of the nicest people you could ever hope to meet," says his agent Greg Mayo. "Working with him is a pleasure because he is such a decent guy, from a wonderful, talented family.
"His values are what every child star, in fact, every kid on earth would do well to bring with them into the adult world."
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