By Kristina Houck
Former Rancho Santa Fe resident Breanna Yde grew up watching Nickelodeon series such as “Drake & Josh” and “iCarly.” Now, the 10-year-old is starring in her own show on the television network.
“I was just super surprised,” said Breanna, whose new series, “The Haunted Hathaways,” premiered on July 13. “That was my favorite network. I just couldn’t believe I made it to Nickelodeon!”
The youngest of six children, Breanna was born in Sydney, Australia, and moved to Rancho Santa Fe in 2008.
While watching Nickelodeon at the age of 6, Breanna decided she wanted to be on television. The former R. Roger Rowe Elementary School student began taking acting and music lessons at John Robert Powers in San Diego soon after.
“She said she wanted to act, so we just supported it,” said Bill Yde, Breanna’s father and the CEO of Global Traffic Network, a company that sells traffic and news reports to radio and TV stations outside the U.S. “She likes to do a lot of things. We support everything she’s interested in, so she hopefully finds the thing she really likes.”
After her performance in the International Presentation of Performers in Las Vegas in 2009, Breanna began being represented by Los Angeles-based Coast To Coast Talent Group.
Initially, she worked as the lead actor of two small feature films produced by San Diego State University and obtained a role in the low-budget film “Level 26: Dark Prophecy.” Breanna also landed two guest appearances in “How I Met Your Mother” and roles in 18 national commercials for McDonalds, Stride Gum, Kraft Cheese, AT&T, Toyota and other companies.
After her family relocated to Los Angeles to cut the constant commute, Breanna, in August 2012, began auditioning for “Haunted Hathaways.” Roughly seven callbacks later, she learned she landed the role.
“When my mom got the call, she told me, and I was just so excited,” Breanna said. “I was jumping around and calling all my friends. I was super excited!”
“The Haunted Hathaways” tells the story of Michelle Hathaway and her two daughters, Taylor and Frankie, who move to New Orleans. They discover a father and his sons, who happen to be ghosts, are already occupying their new home.
Breanna is portraying “Frankie,” a character she said enjoys playing pranks much like herself.
“Frankie is a very mischievous person,” Breanna said. “She loves helping the ghosts with their haunt.”
The live-action comedy series began filming in November 2012 at the Paramount lot. Nickelodeon later ordered 20 episodes, of which the cast already filmed 14.
“I get to embody somebody new and see what it’s like to be somebody different,” Breanna said. “It’s been really fun, but it’s also gone by really quick.”
When shooting during the school year, Breanna spends about eight hours filming and more than three hours studying a day. On the weekends, she likes to play basketball, golf and tennis. She also enjoys singing and playing the piano and guitar.
“She comes home at night and is tired, but when she gets up to go to the set again, she’s so excited and can’t wait to get down there and get going,” her father said. “She loves doing it.
“As parents, we’re very proud of her and love watching her. Sometimes it just brings a tear to my eye watching her do that stuff at such a young age.”
The Yde family hosted a barbeque and invited friends to watch the premiere on a big screen in their backyard. Breanna said she was “super excited” for others to finally see the show.
“I just can’t wait for other people to see what the show is about,” she said. “A lot of people think it’s all scary, but it’s really very funny. “
On the eve of the premiere and realizing her dream had come true, Breanna encouraged other children to pursue their dreams.
“Always try your best, give a 110 percent and never give up,” she said.
New episodes of “The Haunted Hathaways” air Saturdays at 8:30 p.m. on Nickelodeon.