Caitlynn Leary grew up in front of the camera.
Her father, Gregg, had a photography studio in his house and Caitlynn was often the subject of his work.
Having grown up in Jefferson, Leary readily admits she wouldn’t mind making her living in front of the camera. But for now at least, she loves being assistant to the unit production manager on the HBO series “Veep” and assistant to the co-producer on sister network Cinemax’s “Banshee.”
“United production manager, in simplest of terms, is the person who makes sure we stay on budget,” Leary said. “The UPM is responsible for every department and every department has to go through the UPM when purchasing equipment,” Leary said.
“The co-producer is able to contribute to the creative side of the script,” she said.
She caught the show-biz bug early. She’s been in several plays over the years, back in Jefferson Area High School and at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, plus as an extra at Screen Gems Films Studios.
It all started at home.
“I was never camera shy because my dad would photograph and videotape all of our events growing up. I started to write my own stories and plays when I could formulate sentences,” Leary said.
“When I got older, my dad would help me set up the camcorder and tripod. I used to write, direct and ‘act’ in my very own Barbie movies. Then as I got older, the kids in my neighborhood acted alongside of me and whenever my cousins from Pennsylvania visited, we made feature-length movies.”
She said her ‘a-ha’ moment came when she was 5 and went to see “Forrest Gump,” which was destined to be her favorite movie. “On our way home from the theater, I proclaimed to our entire van that, ‘Movies can change the world! I am going to do that.’”