Entertainment TV 5 Facts About Celina Smith, the Talented Young Actress Starring in NBC's 'Annie Live!' Celina Smith plays the title role in Annie Live! which aired on NBC Dec. 2 By Kelsie Gibson Kelsie Gibson Twitter Kelsie Gibson is the SEO Editor of PEOPLE Digital. Since joining the brand in 2021, she has contributed to a number of different verticals, writing and editing SEO content ranging from relationship timelines to TV and movie explainers. Prior to joining PEOPLE, Kelsie worked at POPSUGAR as the Celebrity and Entertainment editor, where she wrote and edited content and conducted various interviews for online and video at press junkets, red carpets, and events such as Tribeca Film Festival. She was also formerly at Bustle, Tiger Beat, and Her Campus and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. People Editorial Guidelines Published on December 2, 2021 01:23 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Photo: Paul Gilmore/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Watch out, world because Celina Smith is going places! The 13-year-old star stole the show as Annie in NBC's production of Annie Live! which airedon Thursday, Dec. 2. Beating out numerous other young hopefuls for the role in a nationwide search, Smith was first announced as the title character in August. "It's an honor to follow in the footsteps of the talented young ladies who have played Annie before me and I can't wait to start this journey," Smith said in a statement at the time. Smith is the latest actress to take on the role; Sarah Jessica Parker, Alicia Morton and Quvenzhané Wallis are also among the young stars who made their mark as Annie, the character based on the famous Little Orphan Annie comic strip. Annie Live!: How the NBC Production Starring Harry Connick Jr., Taraji P. Henson Was Pulled Off While Smith captivated audiences with her performance alongside Taraji P. Henson and Harry Connick Jr., this isn't her first time in the spotlight. In fact, Smith got her start in another notable musical. Learn more facts about the talented young star ahead. She was born and raised in Atlanta While filming for Annie Live! took place in New York, Smith hails from Atlanta. Charles Bergmann/Tyler Perry Studios She's been performing since she was 7 Smith got her start singing at an entertainment camp called AGI Entertainment. Since then, she has toured with The Lion King playing Young Nala, and appeared in the Tyler Perry series Young Dylan. She looks up to Marsai Martin While discussing her acting inspirations with Young Entertainment Magazine, Smith listed off three notable stars. "I love Viola Davis, and Angela Bassett and Marsai Martin because they have all accomplished so many things and they're such great actresses," she told the publication. "I love what Marsai did with Little. I hope that I can make them proud and meet Mrs. Davis and Mrs. Bassett one day!" One of her favorite artists is Billie Eilish In addition to acting inspirations, Smith also looks up to Billie Eilish as a singer. She even covered "My Future" on her personal YouTube channel. She already knows what she wants to do next in her career Smith may be young, but she already has a clear vision for her career. In addition to doing more movies, Smith told Young Entertainment Magazine, "I really want to be a comedian like Tiffany Haddish." As for her dream acting partner, she'd love to work with Marsai Martin or Will Smith.