We love being able to talk to talent on upcoming shows and we were given the opportunity to talk to Lily Brooks O’Briant. Lily Brooks will be playing Mandy on the Netflix series The Big Show Show and you can learn more about her and the show in our exclusive interview.
We would like to introduce you to 13 year old talented young actress Lily Brooks O’Briant who plays “Mandy” on new Netflix’s series The Big Show Show. Starring alongside sports entertainer The Big Show, Lily Brooks’ character on the show is a sweet, energetic, Type A, over-achieving middle child of the family. The show is set to premiere in Spring 2020.
Now let us get into our interview with Lily Brooks O’Briant and talk about The Big Show Show on Netflix.
BSCKids: Tell us how you got the role on “The Big Show Show” (She talks about this below) and do you have anything in common with your character Mandy?
Lily Brooks O’Briant: Mandy is determined, smart, super optimistic, quirky, a little anxious, VERY driven & too adult for her tween everyday world. Mandy’s idols are RBG and Amy Pohluer’s character on ‘Parks & Rec’, Leslie Knope. Mandy wants to change the world and make a positive difference but she doesn’t know how to do it just yet. She has her life planned in 5 year increments. In the first episode she is having a full-on identity crisis because even though she loves her older half-sister, Lola, who is moving in with the family for the first time, Lola moving in means that now Mandy is not the oldest daughter in the family. This completely turns her world upside down because she doesn’t see herself as ‘a middle child’. The 3 Wight sisters are completely different, but they come together as a team to help each other. Just like normal siblings though, there are some bumps along the way.
I am very determined and organized like Mandy. I have 3 planners and make lots of lists like Mandy. I guess I am a lot like Mandy but dialed back 8-9 notches. Mandy is a bit TOO anxious and has a hard time loosening up.
How is it working with “The Big Show” Paul Wight, anything funny during filming you can tell us about?
Working with The Big Show was Amazing!! I was a little nervous because he is over 7ft tall and in his wrestling pictures he looks a little (ok, a lot) intimidating, but when I met him, he was so sweet and kind to me. He is the BEST TV dad and is protective of me, Reylynn and Juliet (my sisters on The Big Show Show). We had some awesome, fun time times on set. My sisters on the show & I became like actual sisters almost instantly. Allison Munn, who plays my mom, is a multi-cam veteran and was an INCREDIBLE role model. She taught us so much. We really do love each other like family and I miss them! We haven’t been able to do press that had been planned together because of Covid-19 and I’m sad I haven’t been able to see them. We are all looking forward to getting back together soon.
Big Show is SO funny & is such a great Dad. During one of episodes we had to have wrestling mats on the floor and Big Show taught the daughters some wrestling moves. He would joke around with us all of the time, was always encouraging and told us he was proud of us no matter what happened. Juliet loves candy & would stash it everywhere – in every pocket & on set sometimes. Big Show would bring candy in for us, sneak it to us & then would take the wrappers so there was no evidence we had eaten candy.
How did you get your role as a series regular on the show?
I lived in NYC before moving to LA at the end of July 2019 for THE BIG SHOW SHOW. When my agent sent the audition for the role of ‘Mandy’, it was for a self-tape, but I was actually in LA for a couple of weeks last summer for a voiceover project and to spend time staying with some friends. My manager called casting and they literally squeezed me in to see me in person. It went amazing but I didn’t hear anything back until a few weeks later when I was home in NYC. It was 9pm and my mom got an email from my agent that casting wanted me to come in for a producer’s session the very next day in LA. We had to send a self-tape because I couldn’t get to LA that quickly. I woke up the next morning & had a stomach virus. My mom had to leave work to pick medicine up for me. I did the tape while I was sick. We heard a couple of weeks later, on my 13th birthday (Best 13th birthday gift ever!), while I was at camp in TN, that the producers wanted me to come for testing. We flew to LA the next week & I found out I got the role the next day. We had 9 days to move from NYC to LA. We drove because my mom wanted my siblings and our dog with us. It was a crazy cross-country adventure.
If you could guest star on any other Netflix show which one would it be and why?
That is a tough one. For Netflix Originals – I would really love to guest star on ‘Stranger Things’ because it is such a cool show! I have a friend on Netflix’s ‘Family Reunion’, so it would be really fun to guest star on that.
For current shows streaming on Netflix – I LOVE watching ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ and would be thrilled to have a guest spot in a drama series.
We are huge amusement park fans as well, what is your favorite roller coaster and why? Being from Tennessee have you been to Dollywood?
I have several favorites. I love ‘Incredacoaster’ at Disneyland, Tower of Terror & Rock n Roller Coaster at DisneyWorld & Superman & Tu at Six Flags Magic Mountain in CA. Because I grew up in Memphis, which is about 8 hours from Dollywood, I have actually never been to Dollywood. My cousins live really close to Dollywood & love it!
We just found out about Six Minutes Podcast…tell us how you got involved and why people need to listen.
I LOVED playing ‘Birdie’ on the podcast ‘Six Minutes’. We recorded 205 episodes over 2 1/2 years. Six Minutes is a fabulous podcast for kids/tweens and is sort of a mix of Stranger Things with Jason Bourne but for tweens. It is about a family who finds & adopts a girl, Holiday, who has lost all of her memories but has some pretty cool special abilities. I played the youngest member of the Anders family, ‘Birdie’, who is fearless, kind, bold, and has a knack for getting into all kinds of trouble when she tries to fix a situation. It is a FABULOUS podcast you can listen to in the car with your family because each episode is only 6 minutes long.
Tell us something people would be surprised to know about you?
I’m just a normal kid with two siblings who loves to act, sing, play guitar & take trapeze lessons. I love to cook. My mom teaches children in China almost every night so she can be with me on set during the day & I cook dinner for our family (with some help from my siblings). I grew up in TN & have a Southern accent but learned to lose the accent when I was 8 years old. I can also do British, Northern Irish, Scottish, Canadian, Australian, Italian, French, several different American accents & even an Israeli accent.
Tell us about your work with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, in Memphis, TN, is very special to my family. My family has had 3 family friends treated at St. Jude – my older brother’s friend, Bailey; my friend, Lucy; and my sister’s friend, Ingram. They have all survived & beaten cancer. I ran my first St. Jude 5K when I was 6 and had done bike-a-thons before that at school for St. Jude even before that. I wanted to do something with other young talent in Hollywood to raise money for St. Jude. I started planning ‘Songs for St. Jude’ in December and had 22 young talent from Broadway, London’s West End, The Disney Channel, Nickelodeon, ABC, FOX, Netflix & more perform here in LA on February 22. It also live-streamed on Twitch. We raised $3000 for St. Jude & I am so grateful to serve as a St. Jude Youth Ambassador.
Why should everyone tune in to watch “The Big Show Show” on Netflix?
THE BIG SHOW SHOW is a fun family show that has a little something for everyone that your family can watch together. It follows WWE champion, The Big Show, and his loud, witty, and always busy, house. What makes THE BIG SHOW SHOW different is that it has something for everyone in your family. My family and I LOVE watching TV together and sometimes it is hard to find a show that is appropriate for everyone to watch together. THE BIG SHOW SHOW is that show you can watch as a family.