The Entertainment Industry CAREs-- Hollywood Honors Young Actors

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There is one corner of Hollywood that is taking a new path and supporting young stars rather than "using and abusing" them ala Lindsay, JamieLynn and Brad. Sponsors from large corporations to small showbiz startups are supporting the CARE Awards, scheduled for April 13.

There is much talk in the media these days about Hollywood's tendency to use and abuse its youngest stars. Lindsay Lohan, Jamie Lynn Spears, and Brad Renfro are recent examples of this cycle. But there is a corner of Hollywood that is taking a new path and supporting its youngest actors. Sponsors from large corporations down to small showbiz start-ups are supporting the CARE Awards, slated for April 13.    Maybe Hollywood does CARE after all.

The CARE Awards have a different take on the Hollywood red carpet scene. No outrageous kid actor behavior here. CARE, aka Child Actor Recognition Event, requires their 150 honorees to bring something valuable to the table. To receive a CARE award, child actors must have worked professionally in 2007, kept a 3.0 grade point average in school, done community service, and written an essay. Additional criteria include acting study, union membership, clean online presence and an art project. Their parents must also prove their worth--they have to pass a written quiz that incorporates questions addressing current events like the issues involved in the writer's strike, and naming states that have child labor laws. Anyone wonder if our newsmaking child-stars-gone-bad and their parents could have passed that criteria?

Awardees this year include a hot slate of child stars who have resumes rivaling actors twice their age. They include Jason Dolley (Disney's Minutemen and series regular on Cory in the
House), Dominic Janes (star of the series Out of Jimmy's Head), Adair Tishler (regular on Heroes and starring in the upcoming feature, Jack in the Beanstalk), and Madison Davenport (starring in the upcoming Kitt Kittredge: An American Girl with Abigail Breslin).    Not household names? Maybe not. And maybe they like it that way. These kids are the current bread and butter of the entertainment industry, and they are where Britney, Lindsay and Brad were 10 years ago. There is a growing number of industry adults who think it is time to support them, and try to change the Hollywood cycle.    

The CARE (Child Actor Recognition Event) Awards are slated for Sunday, April 13, 2008.    The fourth annual red carpet event will be held at the Globe Theatre inside Universal Studios Hollywood. Past and current sponsors include Breakdown Services, AFTRA-SAG credit union, Universal Studios, Chase Mastercard, The Holdon Log, Cricket Feet Publishing, Reproductions, and many more. These businesses have bought into the philosophy that good kids deserve recognition, and professional kids CAN make it through to adulthood unscathed, with a little industry support.

Proceeds from the event benefit the BizParentz Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to education, advocacy and charitable support to parents and children engaged in the entertainment industry. Find their website, along with photos of past CARE events, at http://www.bizparentz.org.    Limited corporate sponsorship opportunities are still available for this year's event. Interested businesses should contact BizParentz Foundation at (818)731-9897 or by email at bizparentz @ aol.com.

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Anne Henry
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