When you think of all the small-town preachers’ sons who got out and made good, you probably don’t think of Daniel Paul Booko. After all, he comes from Three Rivers, Michigan—a town that’s never even been to the top five in America’s Best Small Towns competition. So how did Daniel Paul Booko get out and become such a big success? Here’s how. How Daniel Paul Booko Went from Being a Small-Town preacher s son to a Hollywood Heartthrob
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In Small-town America
Daniel was born and raised in a small town in Michigan, where he played high school football, joined the marching band, acted in theater productions and loved spending time with his family. His father, Pastor Paul Booko of Riverside Church in Three Rivers, Michigan, guided him through life and helped him stay grounded as he navigated his teenage years. From an early age Daniel knew he wanted to be an actor when he grew up. He still remembers his first performance onstage when he was eight years old – playing Mrs. Potts from Beauty and the Beast. It seemed like only yesterday when he stepped onto the same stage for this role in Bratz: The Movie that would change his life forever. The O.C cast him just before it went off air, introducing him to millions of viewers worldwide who became instant fans. And now Hannah Montana! How Daniel Paul Booko Went from Being a Small-Town preacher s son to a Hollywood Heartthrob
I became an Actor
My dad was an actor and he was my inspiration for wanting to do it. I always wanted to do it for myself because of him, but when he passed away I think that really solidified in my head why I should take up the profession. That has helped me tremendously on what I have become today. It motivated me and helped push me through those tough times where people would say oh, you’re not going to make it or you’ll never be successful. In this business you’re going against so many things people say and putting your head down and saying I’m just going forward.
Got A Glimpse into Fame
Born and raised in the small town of Three Rivers, Michigan, by Pastor Paul Booko, Daniel quickly realized his true passion lay in performing. But not just as an actor or dancer–as himself. In his coming of age story he shares how he
made it all the way to Hollywood after having bit parts on such famous TV shows as Hannah Montana and The Suite Life of Zack & Cody, until finally landing the starring role in Disney’s Bratz: The Movie. Once on set and into character, with makeup and hair done by Toni Ralfe of Toni & Guy L’Oreal Professionnel New York (the guy who did Michael Jackson) and George Michael Stylist Josh Dickens (whose client list includes Mary J.
(Anxiety And Depression)
When Booko first moved to LA, he was told by one of his first casting directors that he could never be an actor because of his strong Michigan accent. This started him on a search for someone in the industry who saw potential in him and would be willing to mentor him – which he found in All My Children casting director Frances Foster. The two formed an incredible bond, which continued even after he left All My Children for Bratz: The Movie. I had a second chance at love with acting. says Booko. It’s been an amazing journey so far, but it’s only just begun.
My Parents’ Divorce
My parents divorced when I was seven years old. I lived with my father because my mother had already moved on and remarried. All of my mother’s family resided in the city and at that time, I didn’t want anything to do with them. So, we went back and forth every other weekend and after school for about four years. Eventually, things began to take a turn for the worse in the relationship between my mom and stepfather which left me only being able to see her once or twice per year for the holidays when she came down south to visit her family during Christmas break from grad school. Eventually, their divorce became final but by then there was barely any resemblance of the family unit that existed prior…
A Second Chance At Love
It was a chance meeting and all of the sudden we were inseparable. When asked how he and his current wife Danielle first met, actor and model Daniel Paul Booko smiles while reminiscing. She was the church pianist at my dad’s church in Michigan, he recalls. We just kind of clicked. It turned out that there was something special about that fateful encounter for the couple because she became pregnant shortly thereafter and Danielle gave birth to their son Jeremiah on October 4, 2007.
Daniel, how did you end up going into acting?
I had always been the funny guy in school. I found that I could make people laugh. But I was also the kid who got picked on, who didn’t have many friends. It was a very lonely life for me. After high school I went off to college, and then dropped out because it didn’t feel right. So I tried working as a fitness trainer, but my heart wasn’t in it. I wanted something more meaningful. So one day my dad just said, Son, what do you want to do? And I said I want to be an actor. He said What are you waiting for? And he drove me two hours each way every day so that I could take classes at Orange County Acting Academy near Los Angeles.