Meet Carol-Ann . . .
I came to L.A. in 1989 at the ripe old age of 15 to try my hand at acting. I had done a lot of theater in NY, sang on tons of commercial jingles, but always had that awkward look that no one really wanted to put on any screen, big or small. I still can’t believe my parents took me here, thinking I actually could ‘make it.’ We spent our first month at the Oakwood apartments, where I hung out with a group of child actors from all over the country who had the same agenda.
I had a manager named Gary Scalzo. I met him in NY and he was the one that convinced my parents to stay here for a year. He said I had a good shot, being from NY, and that I had to give it more than just one month. He had a knack for picking talent, and also represented Elijah Wood, Jonathan Taylor Thomas and Casper Van Dien. He put us all up in the same apartment building and our families all became friends. It was nice to have some other displaced people here that didn’t know anyone.
(with Casper van Dien…nice outfit, huh?)
I enrolled in 11th grade at Burroughs High School in Burbank, where they filmed a lot of the school scenes for Wonder Years.
(at my high school graduation party…with Mark-Paul Gosselaar and Jonathan Taylor Thomas)
About a year after I moved to LA, I booked “Harry and the Hendersons.” It was a grueling audition process. I went back 6 times for call backs and then had to do a screen test at Universal Studios. I was so excited when I got the call that they had chosen me to play Sarah Henderson, the daughter. I could actually stay in California now that I had a job! Plus, I wouldn’t have to go back to regular school. I would be tutored for my senior year of high school. This is where I met Wendy. Our production was starting up just as hers was ending, so they kept a lot of the same crew, including the set teacher.
Come back tomorrow for Part 2 of her story . . .