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8-year-old Forsyth County resident in top box office movie

 
POSTED: February 8, 2017 6:00 a.m.
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Janet Carmichael, manager of Movies 400, presents Izzie with a “Split” movie poster.

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Georgia may be continuing to gain notoriety for its TV and film production industry, but one of the first 100 babies born at Northside Hospital-Forsyth is taking cross-country trips to make a name for herself.

At 8 years old, Izzie Coffey’s face can be seen on the big screen throughout the nation in “Split,” the No. 1 movie at the box office for multiple weeks in a row.

“She absolutely loves it. She wants to continue to do more,” said her mother, Shalon Coffey. “She’s been lucky enough at this age to figure out what to do pretty much for her entire life.”

Izzie, who is homeschooled in Cumming, plays the part of young Casey, the heroine in the film about three girls who are “kidnapped by a man diagnosed with 23 distinct personalities and must try and escape before the apparent emergence of a frightful new 24th.”

“Split” may be the most successful production Izzie has been a part of, her career so far has been short yet full.

She filmed her first production three years ago and was in a short film just after completing “Split,” her mother said, before being in another film that is expected to be released in about a year.

Now, Coffey and her only child have flown back to Los Angeles to audition during pilot season.

“Her manager is looking at several things to submit for auditions,” her mother said.

The girl’s love for acting started a few years ago and has taken off ever since.

“She would stand in front of the TV between 3 and 4 [years old], and she used to watch a Disney show called ‘Jessie’ and say, ‘I want to be like Guru. I want to be on TV,’” her mother said.

She got scouted for modeling when she was almost 5 and “did that for about a year. And then she decided more seriously she wanted to act, so we put her in some acting classes in Atlanta.”

There, she was scouted by her now-manager who invited her to fly to LA in July 2015.

That first trip led to her being cast in a Barbie commercial campaign. Three months later, she was cast in “Split.”

Now she works with agents in LA – Coast to Coast Talent Group – Nashville – Dan Talent Group – and Atlanta – People Store.

“It’s interesting trying to navigate LA because I had never been here before,” her mother said. “It’s been great. We really like it out here. I’m a consultant, so I can work from anywhere. Her dad flies out at least every three months and we go home for the holidays, of course.”

Being in front of the screen is not the only aspect of the industry that interests Izzie.

“She wrote at a really early age. She would write mashups between different shows and characters, and we’d have to help her act them out,” her mother said.

She’s even writing her own pilot.

“Her manager [Hines & Hunt Entertainment] read it and said it’s actually good, and they’re working together on it,” her mother said.
Coffey said it is exciting to see her daughter book jobs and that she “exudes a certain level of pride as a parent.”

While the stress levels run high – she has been told it is like going to a job interview a couple times a week – more than anything, she said, she loves seeing her daughter’s face when they call for her.

“In LA, you don’t hear a no. You only hear something if it’s a yes,” she said. “So that can be hard waiting to hear, but she’s really good at saying, ‘Well, that role was meant for someone else.’ She’s really positive about it.”

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