And my grandmother said to me, “Do you know what the rate of the average working actor in SAG is, in terms of how many auditions it takes for them to get a job?” – Bryce Dallas Howard
Being the daughter of actor/director Ron Howard and the granddaughter of actress Jean Speegle Howard and director Rance Howard certainly doesn’t hurt Bryce Dallas Howard‘s acting career, but it was no guarantee that she’d be cast in big-budget films like Jurassic World and Pete’s Dragon.
Speaking with Moviefone, Howard reflected on some advice she received from her grandmother about the challenges of an acting career that has since colored her perception of her career. She says:
I think because I’m a third-generation actor, I really knew to not expect success at all. I knew the statistics. I knew how difficult it is. When I was a teenager, my grandparents — my dad’s parents — brought me to Vegas when I was 16 years old, because I could walk the floor, and my grandmother loved to play the nickel slot machine. And she knew I was doing high school plays, I was going to apply to NYU. They knew that I was definitely going to pursue it in some capacity.
And my grandmother said to me, “Do you know what the rate of the average working actor in SAG is, in terms of how many auditions it takes for them to get a job?” The average working actor, which means they’re making a living as an actor. I thought maybe one in 10. It was one in every 64 auditions.
So, going into my career that way, knowing the very real odds, having seen the ups and downs with my family, and also knowing that theirs was actually a success story, I hedged my bets like crazy. I was always working side jobs and saving as much as I could. When I first started working in theater, but in particular when I got my first break in film with M. Night Shyamalan, and that being my first movie, I was like, “Oh my goodness — this is crazy!”
Then getting to continue to work — while also I’ve had times away, during pregnancies and after giving birth, and all of that — and the fact that I’ve been able to continue to work is really a serious privilege, and exciting, and moving to me. It’s incredible. It’s really, really incredible.