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The Cheaper By The Dozen Connection Zach Braff Was Afraid Would Make Him 'Neurotic' - Exclusive

The "Cheaper By the Dozen" franchise has a long, almost 75-year history behind it, dating back to the 1948 semi-autobiographical novel that started it all and a 1950 movie of the same name. When you think of "Cheaper By the Dozen," you probably recall the successful 2003 film starring Steve Martin, which follows Tom and Kate Baker who have 12 biological children together.

Now, in 2022, there's a new reboot on the block, starring Zach Braff and Gabrielle Union, that puts a modern spin on the classic tale, including lowering the number of children to ten in the multi-racial, blended Baker family. In this latest film, which is now streaming on Disney+, the Baker clan owns their own restaurant and bottles their own "Hot, Sweet, and Savory" sauce.

Despite not having any kids of his own, Braff told Looper during an exclusive interview that stepping into a parent's shoes is "easy" for him. "I love kids," he says. "I have lots of nieces and nephews that I love having in my life, and friends' kids. I'd like to have a few of my own one day, but ... I'm a kid myself, probably forever. It comes naturally to me."

While refereeing ten kids didn't scare him away from the project, there was one thing that Braff went out of his way to avoid while filming "Cheaper By the Dozen" — a surprising admission that was also a topic of discussion during our interview.

Braff has never seen Steve Martin's Cheaper By the Dozen performance

By taking on this "Cheaper By the Dozen" reboot, Braff has inevitably run into a lot of questions about and comparisons to the legendary comedian Steve Martin, which is something he sees as a double-edged sword.

"To be honest, I didn't see the [2003] film because I was too old to be the target demo for those movies when they came out, and I didn't want to watch them beforehand because [Martin] is a comic god to me," says Braff. "I thought I'd be too neurotic in my head if I was trying to emulate him at all."

Still, Braff admits he's "very honored" to have the baton passed to him but thinks the 2022 reboot is "very different," as are the two characters that he and Martin play: "I wasn't trying to emulate him at all." So, do the man a favor when you're watching his updated version of "Cheaper By the Dozen," push aside the 2003 film and focus on what Braff is serving up: good, clean fun.

"Cheaper By the Dozen" is now streaming exclusively on Disney+.