Young actress has major role in new Netflix horror series

Violet McGraw, 7, stars in the Netflix show “The Haunting of Hill House,” which premieres Oct. 12. Dan Watson/The Signal
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A new Netflix series, “The Haunting of Hill House,” premieres Oct. 12 and features one young Santa Clarita starlet.

Violet McGraw, 7, plays the younger iteration of one of the show’s characters living in a house with some ghostly apparitions.

Violet has starred in some commercials, but “The Haunting of Hill House” is her first major part in a series. She landed the role at age 6, making her one of the two youngest cast members in the production in September 2017.

“We had play dates on set, and I’d go to school (on set), and I would eat lunch with the (actors who played the) ghosts,” Violet said. “It was a lot of fun, and I was sad to leave.”

“The Haunting of Hill House” filmed for eight months in Atlanta, where Violet bonded with cast members such as Henry Thomas of “E.T.” fame, Carla Gugino from “Spy Kids” and Elizabeth Reaser from “The Good Wife” and “Twilight,” her mother, Jackie, said.

“It’s a very character-driven show,” Jackie McGraw said. “I’ve described it as, ‘“This Is Us” meets horror.”

The set was a special place for Violet, as she celebrated her 7th birthday while filming and also lost her first tooth, which she got a prosthetic for.

“When I first put it in, it felt funny,” she said. “But now it actually feels completely fine.”

Since “The Haunting of Hill House” wrapped, Violet landed a part as Gugino’s daughter in “Jett,” a TV series about a reformed thief forced back into the crime world.

But back-to-back roles are hardly new for the McGraw family: Violet has her older siblings to look up to, as the McGraw children are all in the acting business.

Her brother Jack and twin siblings Madeleine and Aidan have had significant roles in Hollywood productions.

Madeleine and Aidan played the children of Bradley Cooper in “American Sniper,” and Madeline is in Kia commercials, while also landing roles in “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” “Pacific Rim: Uprising,” and “Outcast.” Jack has starred in “Criminal Minds” and “Godless.”

When Violet decided to take the role, she had all of her siblings’ support, Jackie said.

“They said, ‘It’s her turn!’” she said of the McGraw kids. “And they were all helping her run lines, saying they’d teach her their tricks.”

Violet and her siblings attend Our Lady of Perpetual Help School, FaceTiming their teachers when they are shooting a production and submitting their homework through FedEx.

Violet said she loves the experience of being an actress.

“In acting, I like how you get to pretend,” she said. “I like the cool stuff they use as props. And I like that you get to meet new people and learn about new things on set.”

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