We present new techniques that use motion planning algorithms based on probabilistic roadmaps to control 22 degrees of freedom (DOFs) of human-like characters in interactive applications. Our main purpose is the automatic synthesis of collision-free reaching motions for both arms, with automatic column control and leg flexion. Generated motions are collision-free, in equilibrium, and respect articulation range limits. In order to deal with the high (22) dimension of our configuration space, we bias the random distribution of configurations to favor postures most useful for reaching and grasping. In addition, extensions are presented in order to interactively generate object manipulation sequences: a probabilistic inverse kinematics solver for proposing goal postures matching predesigned grasps; dynamic update of roadmaps when obstacles change position; online planning of object location transfer; and an automatic stepping control to enlarge the character's reachable space. This is, to our knowledge, the first time probabilistic planning techniques are used to automatically generate collision-free reaching motions involving the entire body of a human-like character at interactive frame rates