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Special Project

Special Project
From the 16th Annual Shorty Awards

Dear Hollywood

Winner in Art & Culture Podcast


“Dear Hollywood” seeks to expose Hollywood child stardom as a unique cultural phenomenon with a notoriously dark shadow. Precocious young talents skyrocket to success only to repeat horror stories of addiction, decimated fortunes, and suicide. What is behind the toddler-to-trainwreck pipeline? Why hasn’t it stopped? How are you connected to it at home?

Host Alyson Stoner reveals intimate, firsthand accounts alongside comprehensive expertise and action plans to change entertainment and inspire your own life path and healing. Every week, Alyson Stoner breaks down each stop of the toddler-to-trainwreck pipeline, covering topics like bodily autonomy, the psychology of fame, and stage parents. 

Launched in August 2023, this series was started as a labor of love by Alyson, a former child star and multi-hyphenate known for their on-screen acting work in franchises such as Step Up and Camp Rock to dancing with the likes of Missy Elliott and Eminem.

With “Dear Hollywood," Alyson’s main objective is not to spread sensational clickbait but to concretely elevate public consciousness, reform the entertainment industry, and pass legislation to protect current and future generations of young performers.

Strategy and Execution

“Dear Hollywood” is built on 10 years of extensive research and psychoeducation from a range of therapists and child development experts, along with Alyson’s personal healing journey and numerous trauma-informed certifications.

Alyson spent a full year holding private conversations with child performers, mapping out critical topics and writing the scripts for each episode.

As an independent production that was fully funded by Alyson, we got scrappy with a two person crew on set – partnering with Crispy Chicken social media agency to help execute their vision. In addition to capturing high quality audio for podcast listeners, we wanted to present Dear Hollywood as a video podcast as well to maximize the reach of this important topic. Through set design, lighting, and graphics in the edit, we put together a visual representation to match Alyson’s raw messages on child stardom.

The premiere episode of 2023, “Why Child Stars Are Set Up to Fail," garnered over 400,000 views on YouTube and premiered at #3 on Spotify’s Society and Culture list. Alyson disclosed insights from a confidential meeting with multiple generations of former child actors and provided the contextual framework through which we can investigate the events and elements contributing to their demise.

The series was also 100% promoted through Alyson’s organic social channels (no paid promotion!).


We built an organic marketing strategy that resulted in a #10 premiere of all podcasts on Spotify as well as over 80 million views across social platforms.

“Dear Hollywood” Season 1 was a hit across multiple podcast categories and on social, peaking at #3 on the Spotify Podcast charts in the US. According to Spotify Wrapped 2023, “Dear Hollywood” ended the season as a Top 5 podcast for 25.2K followers and the #1 podcast for 5.4K fans. As of Jan 29, 2024, the podcast has a rating of 4.9 stars in the Apple Store and has been downloaded 973K times.

Through the success of Season 1, Alyson partnered with Ohio Representative Michele Grim for support on legislation introduced in January 2024 called The Kidfluencer Protection Act. We hope this is just the start of continuing conversations of change from a legislation standpoint.

Additionally, Alyson is developing an artist wellbeing toolkit for child actors & their parents that will be available on Movement Genius, a digital wellness platform of which Alyson is a founder.

“Dear Hollywood” also garnered earned media with CNN featuring Alyson discussing the podcast on Laura Coates Live. The podcast was also covered by the LA Times, ENews!, People, and more.

Alyson was also invited to speak on the impacts of celebrity stardom across other podcasts including Vulnerable with Christy Carlson Romano, Not Skinny But Not Fat, and Circle Time with Kelsey Kreppel.


Video for Dear Hollywood

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Crispy Chicken, Alyson Stoner


Entry Credits