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Rhode Island’s Atwell Lands Spot on CBS’ Crazy Ones

Monday, January 13, 2014

 

Ericka Atwell. Photo: Brandon Espy; Make-up, Erica Pannings

Rhode Island native Ericka Atwell has landed a spot on the CBS sitcom The Crazy Ones, starring Robin Williams and Sarah Michelle Gellar -- and told GoLocal it's a "great opportunity" as an aspiring actress to be on the set.

"I try to get booked as often as possible, given the week-to-week demands," said Atwell. "So I'm grateful to share that I will be spotted throughout the season on different episodes."

The Rhode Island College graduate, who ran for statewide office in Rhode Island in 2008, moved to Los Angeles three years ago to pursue a career in the entertainment industry. Atwell had been in consideration for a host position on the The Rhode Show before turning her sights on Hollywood.

"The hustle is worth the price," Atwell said. "I am so thankful for all of the support I have from everyone back home, I get so much support on Facebook. I hope to make Rhode Island proud. And I hope to inspire others to chase their dreams." 

A "Consistent Journey"

Photo: CBS

Atwell's work on The Crazy Ones, which as of now has been non-speaking, comes after years of working -- and networking -- in Hollywood.

"I contacted someone I knew, and a Thursday on set turned into four days the following week," said Atwell of her opportunity on The Crazy Ones. "My first day back on set will be Monday this week."

Of working with some of Hollywood's elite, Atwell said, "To share the screen with Robin Williams -- he is the one of the kindest, most generous spirited people out there. Should I make it, I aspire to be like him. But right now, I know my role. It's to be in the background and learn. I do feel the camera is my friend, and I will continue to work hard to succeed."

"My journey has been in a sense, consistent," said Atwell. "I went from working at a frozen yogurt shop and a Starbucks, to being a hostess at Wolfgang's Steakhouse in Beverly Hills. They then made me their public relations manager, and I made a lot of contacts. I also became a freelance reporter for The Hollywood Reporter, and I worked as Paula Abdul's executive personal assistant."

Atwell said it was an experience while working at Wolfgang's which solidified what she wanted to do. "I was a site rep for Fox while at Wolfgang's," said Atwell. "So if people wanted to film there, I helped negotiate renting the place out. And then I would be there from 7 AM to 2 AM -- and I loved it, the experience of being on set. I could see that happening for me."

Honing Her Craft

In addition to her work on The Crazy Ones, Atwell is honing her acting craft in a number of areas.

"It's non-union work," said Atwell of her appearances on The Crazy Ones. "My goal is to save up enough money to get a SAG (Screen Actors Guild) card. It's $3,000, but it's an investment in your future."

"I'm studying at the Aaron Spesier acting studio, and doing some stand-up," said Atwell. "I perform with the Sketch Time Strangers. I really enjoy working with the up-and-comers like me -- I am passionate about connecting with people who love what they're doing and know what they want to be."

Atwell looked back at her experience in the industry to date. "It was three years and one day to be exact, and I was on national TV. I'm proud to be representing Rhode Island."

Note: Atwell was a member of the GoLocal sales staff while in Rhode Island.  

 

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