This is Our Story

We're the Sprayberrys and we moved to Los Angeles about four years ago to have our go at Hollywood. When we met the folks at Children In Film, they thought it would be a great idea if we documented our story. After all, our failures and successes (hopefully more the latter than the former) can be your lesson book.

So here you have it - Dylan and Ellery working through the ups and downs of being child actors - their mother and I working hard every day to ensure their success not only as actors, but also as well-adjusted members of society.

Monday, October 24, 2011

A Day in the Life of Hollywood Living

It's September of 2011 and much has happened in the last year. Dylan accomplished student of the year and is heading to the 8th grade; they grow up so very fast. Between the science projects and language arts we considered hiring a scientist to literally split him in half to accomplish his heavy study load.

Ellery ended the year with excellent marks in school and is headed to the 5th grade. I remember us home schooling her from the first grade thru third grade, then we threw in the towel on home schooling. We learned that home schooling is a talent that not all parents possess; we do not possess that talent!

Dana continues to be SUPER-MOM as she cares so dearly for these two little guys running them from school to coaching to auditions over to friends for studying and so on….

I’m searching for a new hotel company to join, like so many Americans it’s been a trying time for our family, and me, but we have hung in there together. Lets hope we enter the New Year with a plan to lower our country’s high unemployment rate -sure takes the fun out of things.

The kid’s grandmother has managed to spend much of her time here with us in LA. She is the best grandmother ever, reads scripts, and takes them to school, the park, gym and so much more! We are so fortunate to have her with us so much. Our hope is for her to move here from Texas and become a California resident as we have.

Ellery spent much of the summer hanging out with her friends and rounding up as many sleepovers as possible. She started taking aerial classes and loves the bars and ribbons; she is very good! For an action sport she picked up kickboxing, now that’s a work out! Her mother and grandmother join in on the action too!!

Ellery did manage to get in a bit of summer reading when she wasn’t busy having fun and boy did she have a long fun summer! Did I mention she enjoyed her experience at horse riding?

Dylan started a new workout program and has really committed to it; he enjoys working out with his friends at the gym. He shot up this summer and is becoming a young man. He came up with the coolest 13th summer birthday bash - a GRAFFITI PARTY! The birthday choice was a very cool and colorful style KRISPY KREME DONUT CAKE, so creative and different. He and his friends had a grand time, they did manage to change colors a bit but it all came out eventually. Dylan started guitar lessons again and is working on his favorite licks from Jack White and others!

In August I had the pleasure of spending a couple of weeks with Dylan while he filmed in Chicago. What an amazing time we had as father and son, better than any vacation you could take and the experience for Dylan was amazing and then some! Chicago is such a great city as are the surrounding areas. We enjoyed this very beautiful Midwest City.

As most young actors Ellery and Dylan prepare for their auditions, they have become accustomed to the research and commitment it takes to be ready. We are very proud of their progress and how they have become such young artist yet managed to stay great and grounded kids!

Ellery is recurring on a TV series and as previously mentioned Dylan achieved an awesome role in a Warner Bros feature film that he is working through January, very exciting work for them both. I must say that Ellery has come so close to so many great feature films this year, we know something big is coming up. We must all remember to keep our kids focused on giving a solid audition and the right one opportunity will avail eventually. This is what happened with Dylan and when it the right project hits it’s an amazing experience, as I always say, ALWAYS DO THE WORK and great things will follow.

And of course we get close to great projects only to see them not go our way, we all know how that goes. I am happy to report that our family has a much better understanding of the auditioning process. We have learned to take it in stride and not reflect on the close losses that we experience and realize that if you give a solid audition that is all you can and need to do, the rest is SUBJECT CHOICE that is so out of our hands.

The kid’s agents and management team are such great partners; we are very fortunate in this regard. We have worked to gain the relationship respect our family needed in order to find comfort in knowing our team is in fact a team, a team that can communicate collectively.

In closing Ellery and Dylan had a rewarding summer; their grandmother flew Ellery and Dana to Texas where they spent 2 weeks with family and friends, while Dylan and I explored Chicago, what a great time for us all.

I just learned that I am headed to Chicago again for a 3-week taskforce opportunity with an excellent hotel company I hope to join on with soon. Ellery and Dylan start school Monday, this will be an adjustment, their last weekend is loaded with sleepovers and pool parties!

We are looking forward to a busy and rewarding episodic season and know great things are coming our way.

Have a great balance of the year our Hollywood Family Colleagues and Friends!



Anonymous said...

Hello. I was wondering if you might be able to give some advice on auditioning in general. There is many different opinions on it online and I am having trouble deciding what is fact, what is fiction, or what is both. Some say you need prepared monologues and others don't. Do your children have monologues prepared and has this come up at all? Other rumours state that casting directors, auditors, and such are often tired/impatient... are they ever rude? Might you be able to tell us what could catch their attention? Do your children feel intimidated? Anything you have observed or picked up would be helpful please, but don't feel the need to give away your "secrets." Something in general would be more than helpful. Thank you.

A Note From Carl said...

Have you joined There are both FREE and Enhanced Memberships on that site and their resources literally address all of the questions you've just asked, and then some. It was a starting point for the Sprayberry family and should definitely be a starting point for yours. Hope that helps!