“If I had one wish, I would wish that cancer never existed”, said Sydney Park, multitalented actress, and comedian.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Sydney Park, Actress, Comedian Syd the Kid, and soon to be Producer, to discuss her latest costar feature on the movie “Wish Upon”. At the age of six, Sydney became the youngest comedian to perform stand-up comedy at the famous Hollywood Improv. Comedy has helped her find the funny in dark situations, allowing her to go head first into any projects with commitment and no regrets. Her point of view has made her one of today’s funniest and memorable females in the industry.
“I am so excited for people to see my character Meredith. She is sassy, rough around the edges, and a little bit of a tomboy. She says what everyone wishes they could say; no pun intended. The producer and I like to call her the truth in film because she is always saying what’s on her mind. But, she is also the comic relief. She is so honest it’s kind of brutal.”
Wish Upon is coming to theaters July 14.
Be careful what you wish for, sometimes wishes come at a deadly price. This evil music box has plenty of victims to choose from. Sydney Park has signed on to co-star in director John Leonetti’s WISH UPON. Joey King stars as Clare Shannon with Sydney playing Meredith McNeil, one of Clare’s best friends. “I am such a big fan of Jon Leonetti, the Director. It was an all around win-win, with the script and diverse cast. I was really impressed by them going outside of the box with the character Meredith.”
You might remember Sydney Park from the top-rated AMC’s The Walking Dead, however, there is so much more that meets the eye. This 19-year-old has ten years of acting to her name, including America’s Got Talent, Nickelodeon series Instant Mom, HBO hit series Entourage, That’s So Raven, and a pilot for The Hill. As well as a guest appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. She will be starring in the new action sci-fi thriller Youtube Red series Lifeline. “Oh My Gosh, we are doing promos this summer. It was an incredible experience, but you will just have to wait to see.”
At age three, I remember saying “Mom, I just want to be on TV”.
Growing up as a childhood Actress/Comedian, Sydney Park found a way to utilize her comedy skills.
Through her character development and energy performing, her transition from comedian to sitcom series was that much easier. Yet, keeping her fans up to date on all her projects was a challenge. “[I want to] make sure my audience is growing with me”.
How was your journey from stand-up comedian to Actress?
Comedy is one of the greatest art forms, and one of the most difficult things you could ever pursue. It takes serious courage. I started out doing commercials here and there. But, when I did standup that was a whole new world to me. I remembered the producer [of That’s So Raven] came to one of my standups. He [later] wrote me into the script as Sydney and built it around me. Raven really showed me the ropes from remembering lines, to blocking and all of that. And I just knew I wanted to continue [from there].
Most Disney stars, find it hard to get break out of the childhood star image. How did you find a way to do so?
I think what helped me, was my role on Instant Mom. My character was very funny, normal and sassy. Just your normal teenager [which made it] easy for people to relate to her. That transition made it very natural to go into other roles that were older or an alternative version of Gabby on Instant Mom. My mixture of great projects, team, and timing worked to break out of Nickelodeon.
Having the opportunity to be a regular student, you were able to thrive as a childhood star. What are your thoughts on homeschooling with childhood actors?
I [attended a] normal school up in until my 10th-grade year. Which allowed me to live a very normal childhood. I’m thankful my parents kept me in school for as long as I could. I’ve met a lot of childhood actors that say “they never been to a real school before”, and I just think wow that’s crazy. I was in performing art schools, and a college prep high school; those really cool experiences shaped who I am as a person and an actress. I think if you can stay in real school as long as you can then you should do it. There’s something about that normal childhood experience, upbringing, and [having the opportunity to] work on social skills at a young age that I totally believe in.
Who is your “funniest person” right now?
Oh my gosh, funniest person right now?! Outside of my own mother, I would definitely have to say, Sarah Silverman. I admire her and think she is amazing. I grew up watching her do standup. I’m really proud of her and how far she’s come. I just watched her Netflix standup special and I was crying.
I met her while I was still doing standup. She told me “I’m going to introduce you up on stage as the president of my fan club”. So, when she called me up I was like “look lady I have no idea who you are”. She still calls me “the evil genius”.
Having worked in multiple sitcoms, what did you enjoy most about live audience tapings?
Live audience tapings are the best, I love the energy that radiates through the stage. It felt like a performance every week. I think the most amazing skill I got from that was impeccable timing and working with your cast mates to create that flow. It was exhilarating to be on that stage and see the audience and hearing them laugh. It makes for a powerful experience.
Being an avid writer, have you consider writing any books or screenplays?
I miss [standup] so much. I’m actually working on writing one of my own sets, so I could go back up [on stage].
I’ve written a pilot, that I am producing with Nickelodeon. So, over the years I’ve been conceptualizing different ideas. I am working on a project that is based on my life, but with a little spin on it. So, I can’t wait to see what transpires from that. I would love to star in one of my own projects and hopefully even direct one day. As a director, the first person I would like to cast would be Leonardo de Caprio. I would love to write something for him that would be challenging yet fun and cool. I’ve loved him forever.