Mackinlee Waddell Q&A
Texas-native Mackinlee Waddell stars on ABC’s new drama/comedy GCB as Mckinney Peachem, the mean-spirited cheerleader daughter of Zach and Sharon. But the 16-year-old actress couldn’t be more different from her character – she not only loves to laugh, she’s also involved with the Children’s Miracle Network! Find out more in her Kidzworld Q&A.
KW: How old are you and where are you from?
- Mackinlee: 16 and I am from Celina, Texas but attend school in Prosper, TX.
KW: What first made you want to act?
- Mackinlee: I took a film workshop for fun and fell in love!
KW: What was your first role?
- Mackinlee: Maggie Phillips, a small supporting role in a feature film called Searching For Sonny starring Minka Kelly and Jason Dohring.
KW: How did you land your newest role on ABC’s new drama/comedy GCB?
- Mackinlee: My agent sent me the audition to tape while I was in Dallas. I put myself on tape and sent it to my LA agent who submitted it to casting. Casting notified my agent the next morning and asked me to fly out to LA for a callback with producers! My mom and I flew to LA and the callback went great. After a few hours I received another call that they wanted to see me the next day for a director's session. I then flew home the next day to wait to hear. During the callbacks I heard they taped me and found out it was down to me and two other girls...They sent the tapes to network for approval. I got the call about a week later that I booked the role!
KW: What is your character like, are you similar?
- Mackinlee: I play Mckinney Peacham, daughter of Zach and Sharon Peacham who are played by Brad Beyer and Jennifer Aspen. Mckinney is kind of a mean girl but also she is mean to fit in and she is very naive like her mom. Her character becomes more and more like her mom as the episodes air. The only similarities are...well, our names are pretty similar which is crazy but also that we are both grew up in Dallas, we like to shop and we both have one older brother. I also was a cheerleader in school before I started acting.
KW: What do you like most about the show?
- Mackinlee: I love that it is so funny! Comedy is a big part of my life and so getting to work with such a great cast that are brilliant comedians is a huge blessing and dream of mine. I also love that it is based around Dallas because I know that life so well. My mom actually has friends like the characters in the show. Of course they are more exaggerated in the show...lol
KW: You work with the Children’s Miracle Network, what made you want to get involved with charity work?
- Mackinlee: I was born with dilated cardiomyopathy and have always taken medication and had open heart surgery when I was five. I wanted to give back to Children's Medical Center for saving my life and being such an amazing hospital. I have always wanted to inspire people and give kids like me hope so I started speaking at events to help raise money for CMN which in turn raises the money for Children's Hospitals.
KW: What is some of the best advice you’ve received since entering the acting world?
- Mackinlee: I was actually on a plane on my way back to Dallas for an interview and I was talking with a woman next to me. She told me this and I loved it: When you get, give and when you learn, teach. I thought that was such a cool lesson. Also, all the actors on the show always remind me to keep up my studies and make sure I get a college education which I plan to do! Education is so important!
KW: What is something most people don’t know about you?
- Mackinlee: I love doing silly voices and creating characters with my friends. A lot of people don't see that side of me. I am very silly. It's just who I am and it makes me happy when I can make other people laugh!
KW: What has been your favorite part so far?
- Mackinlee: Well, I love my role on GCB so much but I also had an opportunity to work on an indie film called Den of Darkness where I got to play a young girl who had Stockholm Syndrome [when a prisoner falls in love with their kidnapper]. I love playing the dark roles. I am always looking for a challenge and am always ready to try new things!
KW: Who would you ideally like to work with in the future?
- Mackinlee: I would LOVE to work with Kristen Wiig. I'm pretty sure that it would make my life! She is such an inspiration and role model to me! I would probably be at a loss of words if I ended up getting to work with her! There are also so many others...my list is probably too long to say but I am also pretty obsessed with American Horror Story so I would love to work with Ryan Murphy the creator of the show!
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