Standing in Venice High School's east gymnasium on Wednesday surrounded by a throng of reporters, photographers and, of course, teenagers, Matthew McConaughey fielded a simple question: What was your favorite thing about high school?
His quick one-word response: Girls.
The answer is reminiscent of the classic line from his breakout turn in "Dazed and Confused" in which his character says, "That's what I like about these high school girls -- I get older, they stay the same age."
Since the film came out in 1993, McConaughey has gotten a bit older (42) and clearly a lot wiser (he's now a married father of two, with a third child on the way). And while his crowd-pleasing answer displayed his effortless gift for playing it cool, he spent the rest of the afternoon showing that the he has a serious side and a cause that is close to his heart (the day was dedicated to kicking off P&G and Communities in School's second annual Give Education "School the Nation" campaign in partnership with McConaughey's just keep livin Foundation).
"Matthew has a personal passion and a personal interest and has put personal time into mentoring young people to combat the national dropout crisis," explained Karen Kei Schlosser, P&G North America assistant director of U.S. Operations.
His efforts have paid off. Since launching his foundation four years ago, McConaughey has seen it expand to include more than a dozen high schools where the J.K. Livin curriculum is put in place by mentors through after-school programs focused on improving the health and well-being of its participants.
Wonderwall sat down for an exclusive chat with the actor in Venice High's weight room, where we discussed the passion behind his foundation and the potential to encounter some star-struck kids. Oh, and of course, we snuck in a few questions about life as a newlywed with baby number three on the way.