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Success Stories

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Angela Williams

Mother of Tyler James Williams

On the hit show for which he is best known, "everybody" seems to "hate Chris," but that isn't the case for the actor who played the lead role.  Tyler James Williams (Everybody Hates Chris) is a successful young star with incredible charisma, talent and a kind heart.

Tyler's mom, Angela Williams, reports that at an early age Tyler expressed an interest in the entertainment business.  "He pointed at the TV and said "I want to do that," Angela said.  "He didn't know what "that" was exactly, but he knew he wanted to do it." 

Years later Tyler continues to be a success in his career, and with the loving support of his family he reaches beyond his acting to help those in need.  Tyler helped to host the D.R.O.P blood drive.


On making it in Show Biz

CIF: Who was your first Talent Agent and/or Manager?
AW: Our first talent manager was Donna Mollo of Mollo Management.  We knew a young lady at church who was with this management; she recommended we send pictures.

CIF: How many auditions did you go on before he started landing work?
AW: He went on about twenty auditions before he starting with a print job.  After that I would say he went on another twenty or thirty auditions before he got his first commercial for Dynatap Cough Syrup.

CIF: What would you consider your first big break?
AW: The first big gig was about six months after he started auditioning - he booked Sesame Street - even today that is one of the biggest deals ever.  He worked with them for eight years until he no longer fit the height requirement.  Every time we had another child interested in acting, they ended up doing Sesame Street as well.

CIF: Were you ever afraid that your child would fall in line with the negative image of a child star?
AW: Not at all.  We have lots of rules and regulations in our house and there were certain things that we were not going to do - certain auditions, for example, they could not go out for.  My husband and I have a performance background.  I came from that place where I could see the contamination coming and we made a commitment that if we were compromising our values or something wasn't right, we would walk. The kids knew that from the beginning: if it changed their character, we would walk.

On Parenting a Showbiz Kid

CIF: What's the hardest part about being the parent of a child actor:
AW: There isn't anything.  There isn't because he's my son - they're my children, period.  I'm not concerned about raising stars or famous people.  I'm concerned about raising leaders and trailblazers.  The industry will take care of itself. 

If you don't know who you are before you get here, an identity will be created for you.  Your foundation has to be enough to sustain you individually and as a family - or you'll crash and burn.  Even now with the celebrity that my son has, if you didn't know who he was, it wouldn't be apparent.  We don't talk about it.

CIF: What is the biggest mistake you've made as a parent in entertainment?
AW:  What I would say is that I would have done more research to find out what the work schedule is like for a kid in a lead role on a TV show.  We learned how to adjust.

CIF: Do your kids still do chores, go to church/temple/etc, eat their veggies?
AW: We are very involved in church.  Everything trickles down from integrity and who they are as young people.  He knows who he is and his purpose is greater than the show.

CIF: What is your definition of a good stage parent?
AW: The bottom line is that a good stage parent is a parent first.

On Education

CIF: How do you school your children?
AW:  They have been home schooled for about six years now.  We use Abeka.com.

CIF: Is it hard to keep a work/school schedule?
AW:  My husband retired two years ago.  I worked with a literary self-publishing company, but once we got out here I had to lay that aside and be here with the boys.  Now we're all out here together.  It's tough, but we make it work between our work, their work, family and school.

On Children In Film

CIF: What is your current relationship with Children In Film?
AW: We just met CIF through a studio teacher who introduced me to Toni Casala.  Toni assisted us with the D.R.O.P project

CIF: What advice would you give other parents just starting out?
AW: First take off the rose colored glasses - do your research - never stop talking to your child about what they really want to do.  But before you do all of that, find out and know that this industry is really made for your child and that your child is made for this industry.