In 2019, 22-year-old Victoria Ruesga made her acting debut alongside Hollywood heavyweights Jason Sudeikis and Lisa Kudrow in Olivia Wilde’s directorial debut, “Booksmart.” Prior to appearing on-screen, Ruesga was an integral part of the San Fernando Valley skating scene and a community college student. However, after being recommended to audition by an old skating buddy, she took a major leap of faith and placed her bets on the teen comedy. We sat down with Ruesga to learn more about why she loved being part of this film and what she’ll be up to in 2020.

What was your introduction to skateboarding?

My introduction to skateboarding was “Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater.” I remember that I liked the music and the clothes. I also saw Elissa [Steamer] and was like “Yup, that’s my character.” I didn’t get my first board until my mom took me to some event by the beach and there was a skate park setup, so she bought me this little mini. I didn’t get a real board until I was a bit older, a Val Surf shop deck.

When did skating really become a passion for you and how has it grown from there?

I enjoyed skating from the beginning and had my little crew of homies. It was all fun back then because we would just skate our block, find old stuff on the sidewalks to make jump ramps and skate flatground all day long. Sometimes we’d go to loading docks and skate, but those were sketchy because there was always glass at the bottom. When NoHo park opened, I was in middle school and that’s when I found out you can skate ledges and do manual pads. I just thought you were supposed to huck yourself off stuff.

How did you find yourself cast in Olivia Wilde’s “Booksmart?”

My homie Mikey, who used to film skating when we were younger, is now a Hollywood film director. He worked on a project the year before “Booksmart” was set to shoot and the casting director had reached out to him, asking if he’d know of anyone who would be a good fit for some of the roles. He texted me to go to an audition, sent me a script and the rest is history!

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What were your initial thoughts on the film and your character specifically?

My first thoughts were that I was going to be working with Mikey on the project. Over time, I found out he wasn’t involved at all, he was just doing the casting director (and me!) a favor. I thought the script itself was really fun and it was a perfect coming-of-age comedy for this day and age. There was lots of swearing, LGBTQ characters, young people figuring themselves out—it’s 2019 to the T! I’m grateful Ryan was my first on-screen character because she and I are so alike. I must admit, she’s a lot nicer than I am.

What can we expect to see from you in 2020?

[2019] has been such a wild one for me. I’ve traveled to places I’ve never been to, done things I’ve never done before, met some of the most amazing people in Hollywood, had my 15 minutes, and I feel like next year I owe it to myself to be just that, myself. The movie stuff is fun, but I think my own life skating in the Valley with my friends is more fun. I’d like to focus on my skating, my family and the people around me. This year has been a lot about what my next move is going to be. And in 2020, I’m going to focus on skating, family, good times and tattoos.