By Carleigh Holt
Many people wish to be in the spotlight and walk the red carpet. For Ole Miss senior Lucy Gebhardt, that dream became a reality and she has been in the spotlight since she was a child. She has been in several Hollywood films on her journey to Ole Miss, and she’s grateful for the help of others along the way.
Gebhardt, 23, has been in films including “The Odd Life of Timothy Green,” “Santa’s Bootcamp,” and “Leading to Revelation.” She has traveled from California to Georgia on select films and although many people asked for autographs in those areas, she was instructed not to tell what they were filming for.
“I was born in Seattle, but moved to Atlanta when I turned six and stayed there until I came to Ole Miss,” Gebhardt said. “Being a child actor wasn’t easy or normal. No one tells you how to have a childhood while balancing your time with being on set and going to multiple auditions.”
Gebhardt started acting at 12 and had a unique childhood of walking the red carpet with fellow actors her age. “The Odd Life of Timothy Green” was her first film, as well as her first audition.
“I walked into the wrong room for my scheduled flute lesson and the casting director asked me to audition since I was there and I was what they were looking for.”
She also walked the red carpet at Disney’s World Premiere of that film in the summer of 2012.
“The “red” carpet was actually fake green grass because the movie has an earthy vibe. (and it’s Disney),” Gebhardt said.
During her years as a child actor, Gebhardt was also enrolled in school.
“My school system had a hard time with my set schedule and we almost had to go to court to prove I was doing school,” Gebhardt said. “Instead of being in a classroom, I was with a personal tutor in between scenes.”
She has done other films as she has gotten older, but it has been harder for to get mature roles. She auditioned for parts that would portray her at 12-16 because she looked younger than her age, but was told that she acted too mature and that hindered her from getting those roles.
As a result of a bad experience in the last film she was in, Gebhardt is taking a break from acting.
“I know that if I ever want to go back into it that it’s there,” she said. “But I have no plans as of now to start auditioning for roles.”
When she watches herself on film, Gebhardt realizes what she could have done differently.
“I don’t cringe at what I could’ve done better, I just hate seeing myself on the screen. I think I look out of place and awkward, but that’s because it’s so different from seeing yourself in a photo or in the mirror,” she said. “I have distinct memories from shooting every scene and it’s interesting to see which parts of each scene they kept in the final cut.”
Gebhardt developed a friendship with her acting coach and he continues to have a huge impact on her life.
“He helped me film auditions, edit them, and of course how I could improve in my scenes,” Gebhardt said. “He also was the big brother I’d always wanted along with his two roommates who were aspiring actors as well.”
Academics played a role in Gebhardt’s life along with an acting career. In her sophomore year of high school she started looking for college options, but she did not want to go to acting school. Ole Miss was not at the top of her list, but she has never looked back at her decision. She came to Oxford to visit an old coach who was a sophomore at Ole Miss and to see the exciting environment of Ole Miss during football season.
“I wanted something in the South and after going to the Ole Miss-Alabama game in 2015, I was almost convinced,”Gebhardt said. “It wasn’t until I did Summer College for High School Students going into my senior year that I knew for certain that I wasn’t going anywhere but Ole Miss and I haven’t had a moment where I regretted that decision.”