Tips and AdviceFilm SchoolThis Is What Malia Obama Was Like as a Production Assistant

This Is What Malia Obama Was Like as a Production Assistant


Malia Obama definitely has her parents’ strong work ethic. At just 19-years-old, she has interned on the set of Girls and for The Weinstein Company. And she has not even started Harvard yet!

In 2014, Malia worked as a production assistant on the set of the Halle Berry-led TV series Extant. Talking to Andy Cohen on Watch What Happens Live, Halle Berry revealed what Malia was like as an intern on the TV show.

“She was down to do whatever a PA is asked to do, and I had wild respect for her for that,” Berry told Cohen. “Everybody couldn’t really see her as a PA, although she tried and tried to be one. We just couldn’t really see her as one, but to her credit, she tried very hard to be one.”

Production assistants typically do some of the toughest tasks on set such as setting up equipment, managing background actors, and passing out copies of the script.

Given her secret service detail, Malia is not really the best person to send for a quick cup of coffee. Lena Dunham said that while Malia was eager to do her fair share of work on set of Girls, there were a lot of intern tasks the former first daughter could not reasonably be asked to do.

“I mean, obviously we weren’t, like, making her go get our coffee,” Dunham told Howard Stern in February. “You’re not going to send [the president’s daughter to get coffee]. But she wanted to do all the jobs. That was the cool thing. She was totally enthusiastic.”

That said, Malia is not your regular intern. Dunham remembers being pretty intimidated by Malia’s knowledge of film.

“I once asked her, ‘What’s your favorite movie?’ and she was like, ‘Well, do you want me to list by my favorite director, actor, or cinematographer?'” Dunham recounted. “And I was like, ‘You are smarter than me, let’s just be done with that.'”

After graduating from the $40,000+ a year school, Sidwell Friends School last year, Malia has spent a part of her gap year interning for Harvey Weinstein in New York City. She is set to begin her freshman year at Harvard this fall.

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Megan Diane
Hi, I'm Megan Browne, the Head of Partnerships at Project Casting - a job board for the entertainment industry. As Head of Partnerships, I help businesses find the best talent for their influencer campaigns, photo shoots, and film productions. Creating these partnerships has enabled me to help businesses scale and reach their true potential. I'm excited to continue driving growth by connecting people with projects they're passionate about.

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