We get a lot of press releases that come through, but some make you stop and take a second look. Not because of the pictures, but because of the story that they are telling.
We’ve seen Gianna Simone in movies and magazines, but we didn’t know anything about her. But her story is inspiring and it’s moving. She grew up in the Boston foster care system, to become an inspirational actress and red carpet style icon who is now starring in the family comedy Hitting the Breaks.
Talking with her was an honor. We were excited to learn more.
Tell us a little bit how you got into acting. What has been your favorite role so far?
Originally, I only wanted to model. I got my modeling portfolio done when I was 16 years old. I would take it around to agencies in my area, and one by one they would reject me and tell me I should consider acting. When you’re a wild child 16-year-old, you take that to mean- just push harder and make it work! Now looking back, I see it all as a guiding message to get into acting, but it all eventually took me where God wanted me.
So, the more people would tell me “no” the harder I worked. Eventually I became successful at modeling on my own. I then signed with the biggest agency in Boston, who had rejected me 3 times before going back for the successful 4th. I became one of their top booking models, and along the way, ironically fell in love with acting.
This led me to move to Los Angeles and take things to the next level. One of my first roles I got was in STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS, where I worked with JJ Abrams and the amazing cast and crew. The set was one of the most exciting to be on, it was always thrilling and I was always filled with gratitude every day.
You have become quite the fashionista, making Vogue’s best dressed list. What inspires you about fashion? How do you pick out your dresses for events?
I have such a strong personality and sense of what inspires me, that I found my favorite designers and style fairly quickly. I love pushing the envelope, but still remain classy and elegant.
What suggestions would you give someone about fashion? What makes it so important?
I think finding your personality in it all, going with it and growing with it. Fashion is ever changing and there’s SO many options. If you’re feeling sexy one day and then like a hippie the next- go with it and put your own personal spin on it! Embracing, developing and finding your own style and letting things inspire you too.
Can you tell us about Hitting the Breaks?
It’s a hilarious, family friendly sitcom that we co-produced with Pure Flix Entertainment. It’s about a racer driver, played by David AR White, that moves his family from the fast paced life of Atlanta to the middle of Colorado because he inherits his late fathers’ inn, played by Burt Reynolds. He then meets all sorts of eccentric characters. Some include cameos by Rob Schneider, Tim Tebow, Morgan Fairchild and Ray Wise. I play a badass vegan named Sky Liberty. I wanted to make being vegan cool, because it is! With heart disease being the number 1 killer in America and a whole food, plant based diet being able to prevent and reverse it, this message is crucial!
Ok, we’re totally obsessed with your hair – it’s gorgeous. What are your styling secrets? What products do I need to be buying?
Tell us about your foundation. How can we help kids in foster care?
Another strong calling of mine is to help abused and neglected individuals, including animals. Which is why I started my own foundation. We provide yearly college scholarships to survivors of the Rwandan genocide, mentor and connect abused and neglected youth with abused and neglected animals to encourage healing for both parties. Many foster youths are sex trafficked, and we help rescue organizations around the world, as well. A fact that not many people know about is- If each church in America took in 1 foster child, foster care would be eliminated. One church in America averages about 200 people- that’s 200 opportunities to care for just one child. To help please feel free to donate at: http://bit.ly/1GU6few 100% of the funds we receive go to the organizations and people we help. I want to see positive change in this world, in my lifetime, and I believe in taking action to do that.
Hitting the Breaks is now available on the film and TV streaming service PURE FLIX.