#7 Riley Smith
I started to watch Christmas in Conway last year when ABC aired the Hallmark Channel movie. I must not have been in the mood for a tear jerker as I don't remember watching more than a few minutes. This year tried again and this time I paid close attention. A tear jerker it still was, but with beautiful performances from Mary-Louise Parker, and especially Andy Garcia I quickly got caught up in the story. Add a fun turn from SLN vet Cheri Oteri (sort of channelling her Rita Delvecchio, on the porch character) and another great turn from actor Riley Smith and I was in.
Sometimes there are actors, who have for acted for years on tv and in movies and they don't for some reason garner too much attention. Sometimes it is because they are in projects that don't allow them to shine. Sometimes however, there are actors that remain under the radar because they are so good they seamlessly inhabit every role they take on. So well in fact, they manage to move almost past becoming big celebrities and simply remain talented actors. Riley Smith is one of those actors.
I think I first remember seeing Riley on television back in 2000 with his recurring role on Freaks & Geeks. He hasn't stopped working since. Riley has appeared in television shows such as Gideon's Crossing, Once & Again, Raising Dad, Joan Of Arcadia, 90210, 24 and the last season of True Blood. Riley has also been successful on film and television movies. You might remember Riley from the Olsen Twin's New York Minute and even appeared in a David DeCoteau flick, Voodoo Academy in 2000.
The Iowa native is also a singer for the aptly titled band, The Life of Riley. Next for Riley, joining his Christmas in Conway co-star Cheri Oteri in the television movie HOA, the horror film The Circle and a supporting role in season 2 of the hit HBO series True Detective.
Riley with the incredible Carrie Preston in True Blood