12/08/2011 05:05 pm ET

Jake T. Austin On 'New Year's Eve' Role, Selena Gomez

Jake T. Austin is only 17 years old and already has the resume of a seasoned pro. He rose to fame working alongside Selena Gomez in "Wizards of Waverly Place" and now gets to play a lovestruck teen vying for Abigail Breslin's heart in "New Year's Eve." So what's next for the child actor? He's hoping to follow in the footsteps of Leo DiCaprio.

"I like how [DiCaprio] has changed it up and has played so many characters that whenever he comes out with a new film, you want to see what he does next because he is unpredictable," Austin tells me on the set of my HDNet talk show "Naughty But Nice with Rob."

And if his career doesn't follow Leo's, he does have a solid backup plan -- becoming a firefighter.

"It's important to have a fallback and other activities that keep you interested," Austin explained. "I started acting when I was about nine or 10 years old. My father was a midtown firefighter so I always wanted to be a firefighter, but then acting came along. I have to have a plan B. If 'New Year's Eve' bombs, then I will become a firefighter."

Still great friends with Selena Gomez, whom he has known since he was 11 years old, Austin thinks his pal's boyfriend, Justin Bieber, is the perfect match for Gomez.

"Justin's a great guy, I like him a lot," Austin admitted. "He is on top of his game."

To see my entire interview, tune into "Naughty But Nice With Rob" only on HDNet Thursdays at 8:00 p.m.