Kelly Pantaleoni is a stunning woman who first started her modeling career in the Miss California pageant in 2010. Since then, she was able to “transition into her dream of becoming an actor” and has been at it “for a decade now”.
“They say it takes 10 years to build an ‘overnight’ success, so I'm ready!” Kelly adorably shared with FAME.
Born in Walnut Creek, California, but raised with her Mum and family in Deniliquin, New South Wales (aka outback Australia), she had a wonderful upbringing.
“I grew up on a sheep station that was 65,000 acres and full of bush land where we rode horses and dirt bikes, and camped on every holiday. Despite the properties homestead being haunted -she was a friendly ghost- I had the best childhood anyone could hope for. Growing up in a cottage on a farm is the best way to learn about real life and the natural world around you. It makes you tough and resilient -with a very healthy immune system I must say- I mean I've never gotten sick once during all the backpacking I've done and eating street food for months on end haha... I learned a real fascination and love for animals, plants and the starry skies there. You could see every detail of the Milky Way galaxy, every star and cluster imaginable because there was no light pollution living hours away from any cities. My cousins and I would sleep on the trampoline outside on hot summer nights and watch shooting stars and look for UFO's. I trained my own Australian Pony, teaching her show jumping and dressage, and we won awards against the biggest and most intimidating horses and riders. My mum would take me to horse riding practice and shows every weekend, travelling around the small towns surrounding mine. I was also a long distance and cross country runner, competing in the New South Wales state championships in Sydney (the next level would have been Canada) mum taught me that discipline by running to and from the 2km away dirt road bus stop. I can't even tell you how special it was to be brought up in the outback of Australia, how many priceless lessons and grounding values it taught me. When I hit high school however, it was a lot harder. I struggled with not fitting in, as this quirky nerdy artist type, and had a rough time with boys and making friends.”
Through her activism and philanthropy, Kelly has learned that she “really wants to represent brands and messages that have meaning and are socially and eco-conscious.
“It's hard to find though, so I started to make my own projects that have purpose. The Suffragette Movement is one which really hits home this year, with Voting advocacy being a huge message I was promoting around the election. [This] then clued me in to the anniversary of women having the vote for 100 years now. I felt so proud to bring awareness to these women who fought so hard for us to have the vote, paying homage to these fierce females such as Emily
Davison, Susan B Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton who did the work so selflessly for our freedom. As the CEO of my own non profit organization which produced a movie on mental health in Vancouver and a documentary in Uganda last year, I really enjoy creating my own content now and being in control of how my vision is portrayed and making dreams come to life.
Kelly and her team are currently editing the 16mm behind the scenes fashion film, which will be released alongside the still photos and their story on various fashion blogs and websites.
“You can catch it at our producer Joda Pyle's website when it is launched at www.viii.la”.
She held a COVID Christmas Christmas Campaign for children in Uganda this past December and is currently collecting dance submissions for a music video to Aluna George's "Turn up the love". Their goal is to use these clips from all around the world, uniting us all during this time of togetherness through the international issue of isolation.”
You can see the video she posted here:
“I will be writing a book these holidays based on my South East Asia backpacking "Eat Pray Love" experience a couple years ago too. I can't wait to go on a virtual vacation with that!”
Kelly hopes to use her platform to shine a light on social issues, and causes that matter to her like mental health and protecting the planet.
“I really admire artists that are positive role models and use their celebrity status to raise awareness and funds [for] charities. People who care about things bigger than themselves. From a creative and artistic integrity standpoint, I want to be creating content that inspires, helps people feel seen and respected. I want to be in, and produce projects that empower young women to be the best version of themselves and strive for more than they thought or were told was possible.”
The Suffragate Movement project was co-directed by Kelly and award winning producer of Bomb City, Joda Pyle.
Photos by Nick Dee
“He coordinated a dual-angular photography team consisting of photographers Necolas DiCamillo and Christopher Sinnemann who captured approximately 1500 stills, and guild cinematographer Giray Iscan also captured motion behind the scenes on 4:3 standard 16mm film recently processed by Foto-Kem (Once Upon a Time In Hollywood, Tenet) which is currently being edited for presentation release. This highly esteemed fashion photo and film shoot was styled by local designer “Nataya” and also featured the coveted British model Alessandra Ward.”
Kelly gives back to the community with her NGO Give Backpackers by raising money through fundraising events, putting girls through school in Peru and donating to Oceana, the marine life preservation organization. Last year we did an online fundraiser and traveled to Uganda, showing people with full transparency exactly where their money was going to help the children and families in Magoggo village outside of the capital city Kampala. We bought 14 sewing machines and a plot of land as well, so they created a sustainable business to help empower the girls so they have a future outside of being seen as "producers" -a very different term over there, where your worth as a woman is how many children you have produced. You can check us out on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/givebackpackers/ to see the great work my team and donors did over there! Locally, I used to walk dogs at the No Kill LA animal shelter, read to children at lower income school districts through the SAG foundation and spend time with seniors as part of the Motion Picture and Television Fund.
Kelly is not only extremely talented and beautiful, but she has a good heart and soul. We are so excited and grateful for the incredible work she does and look forward to seeing more of what’s to come from her!
CHECK HER OUT AT: https://www.kellypantaleoni.com/
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