Born in Houston, Texas, Bella Podaras began taking Broadway and Theater classes at the age of 3 and developed her love for singing and dancing over the next 6 years. At just 9 years old, Bella decided to delve into film and television, later moving to Los Angeles to pursue her dream. You can watch Bella on Netflix’s The Expanding Universe of Ashley Garcia. Lapalme Magazine got a chance to sit down with Bella and discuss her character, how she keeps her skin flawless and what initially attracted her to theater.
Growing up, did you always know you wanted to be an actress?
For as far back as I can remember, I have always wanted to become an actress. The idea of playing so many different characters in different genres and in different time periods is fascinating. I can’t imagine having any other career!
Do you prefer television and movies, or Broadway and Theater?
I prefer television and movies. Theater was my first love but there is something about cinema that has always been so alluring to me. I enjoy the process of shooting from start to finish.
What attracted you to Theater?
I grew up watching and loving movie stars like Marilyn and Audrey. Ever since I was little, I wanted to be just like them. So, I think the first draw to acting was the idea of being a “movie star” and then when I actually started pursuing acting, I fell in love with the craft along the way.
What’s your go-to skin routine? Favorite products for foundation?
When it comes to my skincare routine, I try to keep it simple. I like to use a Caudalie skincare cleanser and follow up with a toner and moisturizer. When I’m not working, I use the Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer for every day. When I need more coverage, I’ll use the Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation, Laura Mercier, or Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation.
I really love Alessandro Michele who is the Creative Director at Gucci. I think he brings such a cool, retro flare to the brand.
What can you tell us about your character on The Expanding Universe of Ashley Garcia?
I play Brooke Bishop, Ashley Garcia’s confident and outgoing best friend. Brooke is such a joy to play. It really never gets old playing her! She has a really cool sense of fashion and love for makeup. What I like about Brooke is her almost obsessive desire to help people. It’s really charming and makes her that much more interesting.
Is it tough balancing school and work?
Balancing school and work is definitely one of the more challenging aspects of the job, but luckily my teachers are super supportive and flexible. They know my schedule is crazy so they do all they can to help me juggle both school and my career.
What advice can you give other young actors to pursue their dreams?
The first thing I tell other young actors is to start by watching movies incessantly. Watch a movie you haven’t seen before and definitely watch the classics! Watch the movies you hear everyone talking about. It’s important to watch other actors’ work but it’s just as important to start familiarizing yourself with different directors and styles of movie making.
Photography: Ben Cope
Styling: Karen Raphael
Hair: Felicia Rials| Tabb and Sparks Salon
Makeup: Angie Mikaelian for Exclusive Artists Management