To put it simply, there’s little Dianne Scott doesn’t do. Between her successful modeling and acting career, her role as full-time wife and stepmom to three, and her devotion to advocating for pit bulls, Scott has allowed her creativity and artistry to pour out of her in far more ways than one.
From performing in various film and television shows, gracing the cover of magazines, and turning her passion for pups into something tangible through her web series Neighborhood Watch, her Instagram page A Tale of 2 Pitties (which has gathered a community of 104k pit bull lovers), and her newly published children’s book series, A Tale of Two Pitties, Scott has gained an extensive amount of experience through her adventures. I was given the incredible opportunity to chat about her fondest memories, greatest advice, and future projects.
Q: So you’ve done so many incredible things in your career. Before we jump into that, I’d love to know about your life before your career. How did your childhood and your upbringing inspire you to pursue a career in the industry?
D: I knew when I was about eight or nine that I was a performer. I was always putting on silly skits and being ridiculous. I would force my friends and family to sit while I did something outrageous, and it was all to make them laugh—I really, really loved to make people laugh. I think it started because, I’m 5’10 now, so I was always very tall and very awkward as a child and I think I kind of leaned into my comedic ability to kind of compensate for how I didn’t feel beautiful or attractive. I was like “Okay, I’m really funny and I can make people laugh and that’s an even bigger gift,” and so I did that.
I also started to write stories when I was in junior high and high school because I always loved to write. I still do and I’ll touch more on that later. So, as I got older and grew out of my ugly duckling phase, thank God, that was when my modeling career started, but I’ve always known I wanted to act. I was always performing and doing plays growing up. After high school, I went to Westmont College for a year and soon realized “Wait, this is not what I want to do,” so after that, I moved down to San Diego for a while, eventually made it to LA, and here I am now.
Q: Could you tell me about your early career? What was your life like when you first moved to Los Angeles?
D: So I kind of hopped all over the place because I was honestly lost for a little while, which, aren’t we all in our early 20s? So when I finally made it up to LA, I had a very successful modeling career. But eventually, I thought, wait, I don’t want to do this, I need to be heard! I need to use my voice because I have a lot to say! So my first break was on the show Bones, which was my first co-star, so that was awesome.
Then I zigzagged in and out of modeling and acting and was on a few other shows. I was on How I Met Your Mother, where I got to work with Neil Patrick Harris who is just so lovely and so funny. But I have to say the pinnacle of my career up until this point was, as far as working with absolute legends goes, I got to work on the movie The Incredible Burt Wonderstone. One day of filming, in particular, there was a scene where I was working with Jim Carrey, Steve Buscemi, and Jay Mohr. It was twelve, maybe thirteen hours on this scene, and, girl, when I tell you it took everything in my being and acting training to not just crack up every time Jim Carrey looked over at me and made eye contact! It was just incredible, that was an amazing experience.
Something else I got to work on that was just phenomenal was Face Off. I was a series regular for a few years and that was one of my favorites because you come on set and you have no idea what’s going to happen to you. They work you into these insane creatures and it was just so fun and fed my creative need so much.
Q: What was it like adjusting to the people that live and work in Hollywood? As someone who moved from a suburb to LA at a young age as well, it was definitely culture shock for me. How has that adjustment been for you?
D: When I first came to LA in my early 20’s, I was just clueless. I look back and I realize how many people were taking advantage of me and lying to me, and how starstruck I was and blind to it I was. So, it’s definitely tough. You have to have really thick skin and really know who you are and fortunately, over the years I found some really good people to hold onto. I went through a lot of friends and eventually found the right people, and that’s so important to stay grounded because it’s a very tricky industry.
Q: So, switching gears to another one of your passions, you’re known for being a huge advocate for pit bulls. Can you tell me when and where this passion sort of stemmed from?
D: Yes, so in 2012 my husband saw a picture of a dog at a shelter and just had this urge to adopt him. I saw the picture and said, “That’s a pit bull, aren’t pit bulls dangerous?” because I didn’t know anything at the time. So I was like, “Can’t they lock their jaws, and aren’t they not safe around children?” And my husband, bless his heart, just kind of laughs and says “No, that’s a stereotype. That’s a bias you probably heard through the media.” The crazy thing was when I thought about it, I didn’t even know where I had heard that, it was just a fact rummaging around in my head.
So thank God we took a chance on this dog. We brought him home, named him Hurley, and fell madly in love as one does when they take a chance on a pit bull. My mind was just blown at how what I thought was true was proven to be completely wrong by this beautiful, sweet boy. So something kind of awoke inside of me and shortly after Hurley we adopted another dog and I created an Instagram for them.
Hurley died when he was four of lymphoma, and at this point, my social media following had grown pretty big. I had so much support from this amazing, insanely strong community of pit bull lovers and advocates on social media, and yes, it shattered my world. But also, in losing him, I realized what one of my missions in life was supposed to be, and it was to advocate for these dogs that are so misunderstood.
So in 2016, shortly after Hurley died, we rescued another pit bull mix, so we have two again. He’s continued Hurley’s legacy, and over the years my passion in this whole mission has just continued to grow.
Q: How did this passion for pit bulls connect with your love of writing? When did you feel inspired to connect the two and write A Tale of Two Pitties?
D: When Hurley was still alive we had cats too, and when I married my husband I became a full-time stepmom to three, so we had a very full house. I started writing these children’s books because there are so many amazing stories with my life and these animals, you know? My pit bull loves on my cat and they just have this bromance that was featured on Ellen, and it was impacting so many people around the world! I thought, “I need to write these books and make them fun and educational!” and I couldn’t stop writing. So, I have five published on Amazon right now and I have no desire to stop, so I’m going to keep writing. I mean we now have two dogs, four cats, three children—the stories are just never going to end!
Q: How has it been taking on this new hat of being an author? Seeing that you’re an actor, model, and now author, I’d love to hear your opinion on how these things connect.
D: Yes, they definitely balance. As an artist, there are so many things that just pour out of you in any outlet you can find, and I’m just finding more as I get older, which is so lovely.
When I became a full-time stepmom I didn’t know what I was doing. I don’t have any biological children and I decided to put a hiatus on my career so I could really adjust and be the best version of myself for them and for my husband and not lose my mind. In doing that, that’s when things really started ramping up in me artistically and all these different outlets appeared. So I kept writing and I created a web series called Neighborhood Watch with my dog, and I looked back and thought, “How funny is it that I stopped acting professionally for a while, but I couldn’t stop acting?” So, I created a series with my dog as my co-star (who is a phenomenal co-star, I must say)!
It just goes to show if you’re meant to do something it’s going to manifest in some way. Now that our kids are older, I’ve since gone back to acting and it’s like picking up where I left off, but even better.
Q: For our readers interested in keeping an eye out for you, are there any projects you’ve recently worked on or that you’re planning to do in the future?
D: Yes, I do! So I was just part of a film released last weekend called Super Bois. The film is about people with special needs and pit bulls and shining this beautiful bright light on them. I have a niece with Down syndrome and I have pit bulls, so these were just two incredibly amazing causes I’m very passionate about. Just the way that it all happened was insane and I never expected to be a part of this film. I got to play opposite Marty York, who plays ‘Yeah-Yeah’ in The Sandlot, which is one of my all-time favorite movies to this day, so being able to play opposite him was just such a cool, amazing experience. It’s just a beautiful movie, so that’s really exciting.
I also just did a documentary on plant-based dog food. Now, I’m not vegan or plant-based, so when they approached me to do it I was pretty skeptical. But when we did it, all of our dogs’ digestive issues, rashes, and allergies that we’ve spent so much money on disappeared within a week of being on this food and nothing has come back since. So, this documentary was just released last week, it’s by Wild Earth dog food, and I’m really excited about it.
Q: Lastly, if you had one piece of advice for our readers who are aspiring to be actors, models, or authors, what would it be?
D: Yes, I have a lot of advice! For someone wanting to pursue acting, I think a huge key is knowing who you are as a person, as an artist, as a soul, and making sure you’ve done as much of the inner work as you can. Meaning, for example, I remember getting to LA in my early 20s and not really having a sense of identity. I was so easily swayed one way or the other; it was hard for me to say no, and there were just so many things that were a recipe for disaster. So now, when I look back, I realize that was another reason I didn’t have as much success early on.
I think knowing who you are, taking the time to figure out who you are, and really getting strong in what you believe, what you’re going to say yes or no to, and above all, this piece of advice goes for anything you’re pursuing, never ever give up on the desire that is in your heart. They are not random, they were put there, and you can do something so special that can help an endless amount of people if you follow that.
If you live your life in fear, at the end of your life you’re going to be so regretful, and you’ll never know what you’re missing out on if you don’t leave your comfort zone. You have no idea of the path and you can’t predict what’s going to happen, so you just have to trust that what you’re meant to do is going to happen and just keep going no matter what.
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This article originally published on GREY Journal.