As Layla Crawford’s 10th birthday approaches (October 12) she has a whole lot to celebrate. The young actress stars as the president’s youngest daughter in The First Family, and recently had the opportunity to portray young Tara for the final season of the HBO hit True Blood. To top off her busy schedule, Layla also decided to return to regular school. She recently sat down with BSC Kids to discuss all this and more.


Layla explained that she began her career by dancing and performing in plays at only 3 or 4 years of age, and took up professional acting by 6. She was thrilled to find that after her very first audition, she booked a job and hasn’t stopped ever since. She has already accumulated an impressive array of T.V. roles but she is perhaps best known for playing Olivia Johnson on The First Family. Layla said it’s “super fun” to work on the show. And as far as the star studded cast goes, from Gladys Knight to John Witherspoon and more, “we just connect really well with each other.” The comedy follows the Johnson’s as the fictional First Family and seeks to show what goes on inside of the White House. On set, Layla has found that people treat you according to your maturity level, and said that she never really feels like she is being treated like a kid.

In a much darker role, Layla joined the cast of True Blood for two episodes, including its series finale. The starlet said the cast was really great but because of the severity of the story she pointed out “you have to switch gears really fast.” She described the role as “intense”, revealing the hardships of Tara’s childhood, and specifically the internal debate the character has when contemplating killing her abusive father. Because of the adult content, Layla admitted she only watched her own scenes but noted that some of her friends saw it all. “Now they’re like scared of me,” she giggled.

As much as she loves being on set, Layla did miss regular school, so being back has been really exciting for her. “You get to interact with people that are in your grade level” she explained. Balancing work and school might be difficult for most kids, but not Layla. “It’s really easy for me because I have great teachers.”

So what’s next for this little big star? She’ll be starring in an upcoming T.V. show, Legends, and will continue to balance acting and school. When she’s all grown up, Layla plans to still be in the business. “I want to still be an actress but I want to also be a fashion designer.” The career path is already in the works, as Layla and some of her friends are already running a fashion blog.

Leaving off with a message to all those listening, including her parents, Layla said “I just wanna say thank you because I couldn’t be here without them.”


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