The live-action picture is adapted from the syndicated cartoon strip read in 2,600 newspapers by 260 million readers around the globe. Max wrote, acted and directed the interview. He wore dark glasses like Garfield, which he whipped off after the introduction; a tie-dye shirt he chose himself, as well as a baseball cap so he'd look like a director. After four takes, he was happy with the final product and sent it off to America OnLine, the contest's sponsor. The winner of the contest will go to Hollywood for the premier of the Garfield movie and will visit the red carpet and interview the cast - and receive $500 in spending money.
The movie stars Breckin Meyer and Jennifer Love Hewitt, and features Bill Murray as the voice of Garfield. Max has been selected as one of the five finalists. AOL members (Keyword: Red Carpet VIP) will be able to view and vote for his video from May 18 to May 27. "He is absolutely beside himself," said Max's mother, Caroline Leavitt. "We're all so excited about this opportunity." Max added that it would be a great honor to be able to interview the real Garfield. "I never met a cat who ate lasagna before," he said, "or a cat as big as I am."
To vote for Max, go to the "keyword" field in AOL and put in "Red Carpet VIP."