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Nicole Coady: Fairy Tales Do Come True

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Mirror, mirror on the wall…who’s the fairest of them all?

Who doesn’t recognize this familiar question from the iconic fairy tale about Snow White? This story and many other fairy tales were part of the fabric of our lives when we were children.

Nicole Coady has taken Snow White’s narrative and other Grimm’s Fairy Tales and run with them in the upcoming film, The Brothers Grimm’s The Twelve Dancing Princesses, which she will be directing. It’s produced by PrinRoc, run by Nicole and her producing partners, Ann Marie Lizzi and Michalina Scorzelli. “We look forward to a film filled with breathtaking dance scenes, suspenseful love connections and unconditional family bonds,” she described. “This story is the culmination of my years in Hollywood, dance training and creative endeavors thus far.”

Princesses and Role Models
She is also working on a TV project, The Adventures of Snow White and Rose Red, a magical tale about two girls who live in an enchanted forest and have adventures with their fairytale friends. “This is a live-action fairy tale featuring Snow White and Rose Red, who live in a cottage in the woods. I’m working with Katie and Andrew Balog, through our production company, Trident Fantasy Films, to produce the show. We’re shooting season one this summer in June or July, and the show will run on Amazon the beginning of 2018,” Nicole explained. “This show is TV for children, and it’s very heart-centered. I wanted to create a show that my now 12-year-old daughter could watch when she was young.”

She emphasized that there are no drama queens in the stories; they are not scary and there is a little moral at the end of each one. The conclusion presents a lesson, not ABCs or multiplication tables, but a life lesson about how to be a good person. “I wanted to bring these old folk tales alive in our culture. I’m worried children aren’t reading as much, and parents aren’t reading to their children as much,” she continued. “I’m hoping they will go back and ask their parents to read the original Grimm stories to them.”

Family Connections
Nicole has taken the idea of being a princess to new levels, and she credits her parents for her creative thinking and love of adventure. She enjoyed a delightfully happy childhood in the New York City neighborhood of Greenwich Village. Her father, Michael Coady, began as a journalist and ended up senior editor and then CEO for a group of magazines, including W, Women’s Wear Daily and Jane magazine. “He was essentially running a Bible for the fashion industry and exposed me to so much creative energy. He would bring us into the office and I would see the artists drawing by hand,” she smiled. “He grew up in a one-street town in Massachusetts and never went to college. He taught me that if you work hard and keep following your dreams, you can succeed and make it. He would always tell me, ‘You’re the best; you can do anything.’ He made me think I can do whatever I set my mind to!”

Her mother, Helen Coady, was equally inspiring. She began her career as a microbiologist and lab assistant at Harvard. She moved to Northwestern University, where she worked on a Nobel-prize-winning team. She then decided she wanted to go back to school to become a lawyer, and she worked as a legal aid attorney. “She was truly a product of the feminist movement in the ’60s. She believed every person, no matter what their station in life, deserves the best representation in court. She did a lot of work with the underprivileged community,” Nicole explained. “She had incredible values, and she taught me we all need to help each other and that we are all equal. I don’t know how she did it, because she came home, cooked dinner and put us to bed every single night. She taught me how to be a good mom and to raise a family while holding down a career.”

Nicole’s sister, Pamela Coady, lives in Los Angeles and works as a music supervisor. She is thrilled that the two are working together, and Pamela is associate producer on The Adventures of Snow White and Rose Red and the music supervisor on The Twelve Dancing Princesses. She has worked on such shows as Dancing with the Stars and So You Think You Can Dance.

Foundation for Success
Nicole earned her bachelor of arts degree in film from Vassar College in film, and went on to pursue a career in the film industry, working for such companies as the Creative Artists Agency. She was an assistant at John Hart’s Hart Hubbard Films and a script reader at Tristar Entertainment, and she wrote scripts for two animated features, Livin’ It Up with the Bratz and Little Bratz Party Time, that showcase MGA’s popular line of Bratz dolls.

Thomas Padovan is Nicole’s husband of 15 years. This creative couple met in Hollywood, where they were living. Their daughter, Cordelia, is playing Alice in Wonderland in the upcoming television show The Adventures of Snow White and Rose Red. “When I was working on the trailer for Princesses, he jumped in and helped me with editing and encouragement, and Cordelia worked as a production assistant on the trailer for The Twelve Dancing Princesses. I was trying to juggle my career and family and keep it separate, and it wasn’t working for me, so I finally figured out it all should fit together. My husband and daughter both are involved with my projects so I can be with my family,” Nicole noted.

She landed in Los Angeles to do the work she enjoys, but she admits she’s an East Coast girl and she missed it. When Cordelia was born, Nicole and Thomas decided they didn’t want to raise her in that culture. That’s when they decided to move across the country to the Saratoga Springs area to pursue her creative passion. “We already had a house here that we were using as a country house. It’s an amazing place. The countryside is beautiful, and it’s close to the Saratoga-Capital Region, which is urban enough for us,” she emphasized. “Here, you have sophisticated, intelligent people, a great school system and a back yard with neighbors Cordelia can play with.

“It was the right move, and creatively, I had reached a point where, if you’re lucky enough to sell a script, immediately producers bring in other writers; by the time it hits the screen, it’s nothing like you wrote it. Also, I was hitting that glass ceiling in terms of directing, which I was trained in.” Female directors are still rare in Hollywood. Nicole found that 20th Century Fox, Paramount and several other studios, with a slate of 25 or so films apiece for 2018, had no female directors. She related, “Disney has three women directors.”

Work and Art
Now that Cordelia is 12, Nicole has plunged back into her passion, and she is quick to admit that her work is her hobby. “I have a very creative job! Everything feeds that, and, honestly, at the end of the day, if I were alone on a desert island, I would be writing. Everything is inspiration for that,” she revealed. She is the production director for Saratoga Arts Fest and coordinates the Arts Fest Fridays art parties, pulling all her creative interests into the process.

This creative spirit has an imagination that stretches to the moon. She is inspired by music, and since she studied ballet, many of her ideas come to her while she is listening to a favorite song. “My inspiration comes to me everywhere, from some incredible castle in Europe to a piece of art,” she reiterated. “I feel compelled to build these stories, and right now I have to admit I’m very inspired by the fairy tales I’m working on.

Many young female writers are working on episodes for her series. She meets them at Skidmore College, where she teaches two classes, Writing for the Screen and Script to Screen. In fact, all but one of her writing staff and producers are women.

Nicole advises women to stretch their networking skills for success. “Women should really use their networks and collaborate as much as possible. Sometimes it’s hard. What got me motivated to get back into film and TV after taking time off to be a mom and work on a few novels was joining Upstate New York Women in Film, where I served on the board for a year. That is where I connected with other women in my industry. And, in return, be a good ally yourself. I’m especially interested in helping young women find their dreams. It’s good karma. I believe when women unite to work together we can create incredible beauty and light in the world, and we are pretty much unstoppable!”

As you can see, Nicole believes in herself and others. That’s why she is the perfect woman to create the new princess of 2018. ■

Visit and for more information. Make plans to attend the next Arts Fest Friday event, June 9, at the Victoria Pool House in Saratoga Spa State Park, featuring Opera Saratoga. This is a family friendly, free event with pony rides, petting zoo and an Animals in Art exhibition.