Lorraine Nicholson is just 20, but she’s already following in the acting footsteps of her famous father, Jack Nicholson.
“I think it opens up a lot of doors, but it’s up to me to go through them,” Lorraine told Access Hollywood Live’s Kit Hoover and guest co-host Dean McDermott on Monday of having the Nicholson name in Hollywood.
The latest door she broke through on her own led Lorraine to a starring role in “Soul Surfer,” playing Alana Blanchard, the best friend of Bethany Hamilton, the young woman who didn’t let losing her arm to a shark attack stop her from achieving her wave riding dreams.
“I’m really happy that they gave me this opportunity to show that I can act,” Lorraine said.
The actress, who is currently a student at Brown, the same school as “Harry Potter’s” Emma Watson, said she got the role of Alana after a lengthy audition process, but after netting the role, there was also a hefty amount of preparation.
“I went to Hawaii about a month early to learn how to surf,” she explained. “I was surfing every day and then training for two hours afterwards, so I was getting very buff and athletic. It was a great change of pace from my usually quite lazy lifestyle.”
Despite starring in a film that features a shark attack, Lorraine said she wasn’t worried when she jumped in the Hawaiian surf for training.
“I didn’t really think about it to be honest. Bethany’s attack was a case of mistaken identity. The shark was mentally ill, they found out later,” she said.
Jack did give his daughter some advice before she filmed the project, which is due out on April 8, and also stars AnnaSophia Robb in the title role.
“Well, he always tells me to look people in the eye and tell the truth and that’s what I sort of tried to bring to this role,” she said.
When she’s not at college, Lorraine, who is currently on spring break, said she and her dad still keep up some family rituals.
“We eat breakfast together every morning,” she said, noting their food of choice is “fried eggs and bacon.”
And like her famous father, Lorraine too is a big fan of the Los Angeles Lakers.
“I’m definitely a Lakers fan,” she smiled. “I sort of grew up courtside, if you will. There’s like all these pictures of me as a kid, like on the court confused.”
While the father-daughter pair enjoys spending time together, when Jack dropped his baby girl off at Brown, he sent her on her way with his blessing.
“He dropped me off, and he was like, ‘Go! Live your life. I’m very proud of you.’ And, ‘Have a great time!’” she revealed.