By John Lauritsen

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — More than a hundred kids spent this steamy summer day indoors — in a school — waiting in line for a shot at the bright lights of Hollywood.

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They all answered an open casting call for a movie that will be set in Hawaii staring Bradley Cooper.

In fact, there’s no connection with Minnesota in the script. But the casting director Debbie DeLisi came here anyway, looking for just the right kid.

She’s is looking for one face, one big personality, that can make it in Hollywood. It’s for a key role in a Cameron Crow film: An 8- or 9-year-old boy who films everything he sees.

“Someone could be highly-trained, highly-cute, but maybe they don’t have that magical little quality,” DeLisi said. “The kid needs to be a really smart, gifted kid. He’s a little filmmaker and so, there’s so many smart kids in Minneapolis.”

The first step: Looking for presence and personality.

“I think I have a lot of personality,” 9-year-old Ethan Booth said.

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“They like took a video of us telling what our hobbies are, how we found out about it,” 9-year-old Jackson Rahn said.

The best will be called back to read a script on Thursday.

“It made me nervous because, like, what’s gonna happen next? And then it was really fun because I was really excited for it,” Booth said.

One will go all the way to the big screen.

“Obviously, there’s a one-in-a-million chance, but at least let him dream a little bit,” Jackson Rahn’s dad, Kevin, said.

After all, dreaming is what smart kids do.

“The first night I heard of it, I began drawing a picture of me walking down the red carpet,” Jackson Rahn said.

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The movie already tried casting the role with professional actors — and struck out. If she can’t find the right kid with this open call, DeLisi said she’ll try the other place she looks for smart kids: New York.

John Lauritsen