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Malverne 6-year-old stars with Ryan Gosling

Faith Wladyka plays with sister Reagan's hair Saturday

Faith Wladyka plays with sister Reagan's hair Saturday at their Malverne home. (Jan. 15, 2011) Photo Credit: T.C. McCarthy

Faith Wladyka pressed the backs of her fingers together above her head, stood on her tip-toes and twirled. She shuffled her feet and made her dress shimmy as she moved around to Miranda Cosgrove’s “Oh Oh.”

Wladyka does all the things a typical 6-year-old would do ... most of the time.

In between impromptu dance routines and rounds of “Sesame Street” on her Nintendo DSi, though, Wladyka plays house with the likes of Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams. The Malverne girl has made her big-screen debut in “Blue Valentine” as the duo’s quirky daughter. The movie opened this weekend in her hometown.

She got her start as a print model for Johnson & Johnson when she was an infant and worked her way up to starring in a national commercial for the company. Then she began auditioning for film roles more frequently and was vacationing at Disney World with her parents, Tony and Dawn Wladyka, and siblings A.J., 5, and Reagan, 3, when they got the first callback for “Blue Valentine.”

Faith, who shot the film a year-and-a-half ago, would distinguish between the Wladykas and her on-camera parents by occasionally calling her on-screen parents “Ryan Gosling daddy” and “Michelle Williams mommy.”

“She’d tell us stories like, ‘My mom -- you know, my pretend mom, Michelle,’ ” Tony Wladyka said, laughing.

Tony Wladyka and his wife worked hard to keep a balance between parenting and staying out of the way on set. (They have some experience, as their younger children act, too.) It wasn’t too difficult, but there were times that he was nervous Faith was getting into trouble.

“Sometimes between takes she’d start yelling, ‘Mom! Dad!’ and I’d be like, ‘Oh, boy.’” Wladyka said. “So I’d go over there and she’d just be playing with Ryan and Michelle.”

Faith uses her dad’s laptop to keep in touch with Gosling -- when she’s not checking her Facebook fan page or her profile. But with no new roles on the horizon now, she has plenty of time for regular first-grade stuff, too.

“I like to go to dance class; I like to read.” she said. “I really love school.”

Faith already dreams of a future as a director, dancer and actress -- as long as it also includes a stint as a Boston College cheerleader, a tip of the cap to her parents’ alma mater.

Faith Wladyka plays with sister Reagan's hair Saturday at their Malverne home.

Read Newsday's review of "Blue Valentine."


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