Hayley Marie Norman is a rising film and television star with a long list of memorable credits that showcase her versatility and dedication as an actress. Born and raised in Los Angeles, California, she was selected as one of the few and highly distinguished California Arts Scholars, an honor for which she received a Governor's medallion, the highest distinction in California for artistically talented students, an unprecedented two years in a row. Hayley continued her training and graduated from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and the Upright Citizens Brigade, honing her skills as both a dramatic actress and comedienne.
Her latest features include a memorable breakout performance in the highly anticipated Chris Rock directed film, Top Five, proving she can hold her own amongst some of Hollywood’s most iconic comedians. The film, which is set for release on December 12, 2014, was a hot commodity at the Toronto International Film Festival, prompting Paramount Studios to purchase the film and include it in the DGA’s annual The Contenders event, preparing Top Five for a successful awards run.
In addition to her role in Top Five, this multitalented actress also co-produces and stars in the semi-scripted hit online series Hello Cupid. Drawing largely on her improv and comedy skills, the series follows longtime friends Robyn (Hayley Marie Norman) and Whitney as they experience the ups and downs of online dating. The series, now in its second season, has garnered critical acclaim and has been named an official selection at the TriBeCa Film Festival and one of the “Top 5 Great Web Series You Should Be Watching Now” by Vulture.
She actively performs with popular sketch and improv groups around town and has written, produced, and starred in several online videos that have garnered millions of views individually and have been featured on Funny or Die. Additionally her video Thanksgiving Sex Tapes was named one of the best videos of 2013. She continues to enjoy performing and putting up new material at the Upright Citizens Brigade.
Apart from her impressive resume, Hayley is a huge fan of the blacksploitation genre and is a self-proclaimed fan girl of Pam Grier. She is a classically trained dancer and a long time vegan and animal rights activist.
After starring as a perky cheerleader in Sony Pictures Screen Gems' film Fired Up, she received rave reviews from Robert Ebert, who declared her "the most intriguing member of the cast." She's had recurring roles on television shows like Crash (in which she acted alongside one of her favorite actors, Dennis Hopper), as well as ABC’s Selfie and BET's long running The Game. Her other credits include Hancock, Our Family Wedding, Norbit, New Girl, Bones, The Exes, CSI: NY, CSI: Miami, Studio 60, and many more. A bonafide LA valley girl of Russian, German, and African American heritage, one of Hayley’s first jobs was as Mattel’s official “face” of the African American Barbie, and she later filled the iconic role of Briefcase #25 model on Deal or No Deal. Hayley also has a role in Relativity Media’s Beyond The Lights, which is slated to hit theaters this November.
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One of the closest people to me is vegan and even though I was always open to eating the food, it wasn't something that I ever considered for myself. Mostly because I didn't understand it. I think as human beings, we tend to reject things we don't understand and that's why education is so important so that we can be more open minded, accepting, and aware. Randomly, I began to experience some stomach problems and was no longer able to eat most foods. I wasn't eating meat, but it was not intentional. At this same time, my other close friend sent me the book Skinny Bitch. I had no idea that it had anything to do with veganism. This same friend had mentioned to me a few months earlier that she was becoming vegan and I stupidly assumed it was "just a phase." Well, I read the book she sent me in just one night, and I immediately knew that I had no other choice but to become vegan. And not just for vain reasons such as being a "Skinny Bitch" but because of the immense cruelty toward these sentient, amazing beings that experience feelings and emotions such as fear, love and pain, very similar to humans. This has been scientifically proven. The negative ramifications on the environment also blew me away. I previously had no idea that factory farming was destroying our environment.
Once you know you can't un-know. The knowledge I was afforded made being a vegan easy because I simply am not willing to contribute to the meat and dairy farming industries in any way. It's crazy to me when people say that they can't become vegan because it's too hard and requires too much planning. It's like, stop being so selfish. We need to learn to see outside of ourselves and look at the bigger picture. But those same people manage to pack a gym bag to workout after their work day is over, or party clothes to go out after work. Planning ahead what you're going to eat is just as easy, and has way more positive effects.
I try to get involved in everything I hear about regarding the animal rights movement. Whether it's encouraging people to boycott the circus, spreading my knowledge about veganism and taking time to help others make the transition, adopting animals, or helping to plan or attend events that support veganism and animal welfare, I am all about it. I've helped a lot of people go vegan and even with all the cool things I've gotten lucky enough to do career wise, I think helping and encouraging people to convert to veganism is the accomplishment I am most proud of. I really want to start getting involved in doing some of the undercover animal welfare and expose work as well. Then I can also satisfy the secret desire I've harbored since my days of watching Inspector Gadget many moons ago which was to be an undercover detective. I was going to say regarding the combining of helping animal welfare and also getting to fulfill my fantasy of doing underover work that I'd be, "killing two birds with one stone," but as a vegan I think I need to find a new phrase to replace that outdated one.
There are some animal rights organizations that I support and admire. I love Animal Acres. I actually brought my friends and family here for my birthday this year. I am also an active member of Farm Sanctuary, and adopt a turkey every Thanksgiving! I love sponsoring animals, and just how most people have picture of their family on their refrigerator, mine is full of all the animals I've sponsored! I also support and volunteer at homeless shelters in LA. I must have been homeless in a past life or something because my heart really goes out to all those folks and I try to help however I can.
I have 2 dogs who are bonafide members of my family not "just pets" and there are new memories of us relating to each other being made each and every day. Animals are so much smarter and so much more intuitive than most humans give them credit for. What a pompous species we are! I always fall in love with animals though and inevitably end up crying because I can't take them all home with me. I want a huge sanctuary of my own one day where I can have a plethora of different animals. I just met a pig named Molly who was rescued from a dermatologic lab. Poor thing still had burns all over her body. But Molly was my homegirl! We got along so well. I have so many stories like this though, I love animals and hope to help millions of them in my lifetime and hopefully beyond.
If I could say something to someone considering going vegan, I would say - Just do it!