Alyssa Milano has been a staple on TV since she was 12 years old. That’s when she made her series debut as Samantha Micelli, Tony Danza’s daughter on “Who’s the Boss.” And unlike many of her teen idol peers, she’s had a fairly drama-free life on and off screen – and she has a good grasp on how she’s managed to have a lasting career.
Milano hasn’t really had time to get in trouble over the course of the last 26 years. She’s been too busy starring in hit series like “Charmed” and “Melrose Place,” making guest appearances on everything from “Fantasy Island” to “Castle” and enjoying recurring roles on sitcoms like “My Name is Earl.”
Milano’s latest TV outing is the Lifetime Original Movie “Sundays at Tiffany’s.” Based on the novel of the same name by James Patterson, the telefilm tells the story of Jane Claremont a successful businesswoman whose childhood imaginary friend reappears as she’s planning her dream wedding.
Alyssa Milano on Why She Continues to Act
In a recent conference call interview, Milano talked about why she’s continued to act after all these years. “I think what’s kept me in the industry is I don’t know if I can do anything else. I didn’t go to a regular high school. I didn’t participate in college classes. So this is really all I’ve ever known since I was a little girl.”
Milano understands that having such a successful and stable career isn’t an easy fete in Hollywood. And she doesn’t take the small screen for granted, “I like the stability of television… especially with series. This business is so fickle and you never really know when your next job is gonna be. So for me to have that stability of being on a series and knowing at least for that season that you have a job… it allows me to enjoy the rest of my life a little bit more because I don’t have to stress about where my next job’s gonna be.”
Alyssa Milano on Her “Sundays at Tiffany’s” Co-Star Stockard Channing
And she says she’s found inspiration collaborating with legendary actors like her “Tiffany’s” co-star Stockard Channing. “Working with her is a great reminder of why after 30 years of being in this business I still love my job. It’s because I get to so watch people like her work and still learn.”
Milano also knows that a lot of the reason that she’s stayed on track has to do with her home life, “I was blessed to have an amazing family that kept me grounded and made me realize what was important in life. And I don’t think a lot of kids in this business have that.”
Alyssa Milano on Being a Child Star
She also understands that she grew up in a very different climate for young stars. That’s why she sees pluses and minuses to the current state of the entertainment industry for the new generation of teen idols. She explained the dichotomy, “I think it’s harder and easier in a lot of ways… I think it’s easier because when I was a kid on television there were very few people from my generation of TV that actually made that transition. Also, I was on TV at a time where it wasn’t really cool to be on TV. You know a lot of those people did not work in other mediums. They didn’t do films… they didn’t have other arenas to work in. It wasn’t until really “Friends” I think, maybe Michael J. Fox as well, where people that were on TV were sort of taken seriously as actors at all. So I think it is easier now for kids to make that transition if they have talent.”
She continued, “I think it’s harder now though because obviously we have this fascination with celebrity. And the Internet has made it very easy for that fascination to sort of alienate the celebrity from just being a normal person. You know I think everyone is under a microscope now and that was not the case when I was growing up. So… I think that that would be a lot harder to grow up with.”
But she believes there’s a commonality with all of the child actors who have grown up to walk rocky roads, “What I usually tell people is I feel like the people that have had a hard time and have struggled are the people that would have had a hard time and struggled no matter what they did in their lives.”
See how well Alyssa is doing for yourself by tuning in to “Sundays at Tiffany’s” on December 6 at 9:00 p.m. EST/8:00 p.m. Central on Lifetime.
Note: This was written by a Yahoo! contributor. Join the Yahoo! Contributor Network here to start publishing your own articles.