Meet Maia Kealoha, Who Performs Lilo within the Reside-Motion Lilo & Sew (Unique)theinsiderinsight

Maia Kealoha is able to make a splash in Hollywood at simply 7 years outdated.

The native Hawaiian portrays Lilo in Disney’s upcoming live-action model of the favored 2002 animated movie Lilo & Sew. Kealoha was introduced because the lead in March 2023 after a nationwide search.

Zach Galifianakis, Sydney Elizabeth Agudong and Kahiau Machado are additionally a part of the forged.

She just lately made her main purple carpet debut on the Gold Gala on Could 11, the annual occasion celebrating Asian, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander excellence in leisure, the humanities, enterprise, tradition and extra.

The actress was the youngest attendee and presenter, honoring first responders who fought the devastating Maui wildfires with Gold Home’s Social Affect award. She was joined on stage by one other Disney star, Moana‘s Auli’i Cravahlo, and Krystal Ka’ai, the Govt Director of the White House Initiative on AANHPIs.

Maia Kealoha, Krystal Ka’ai, and Auli’i Cravalho current an award to Maui first responders on the 2024 Gold Gala.

Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Pictures for Gold Home

Earlier than she hit the stage, PEOPLE caught up with the rising star, who shared what it was like studying she was forged in a Disney movie.

“Once I came upon I used to be going to be Lilo, my jaw actually dropped and I could not even imagine it,” Kealoha recalled. “I rung my dad and I stated, ‘I did it! I am Lilo! I am Lilo.’ After which they grabbed me and we jumped up and down. I used to be so excited!”

When requested how she’s just like her on-screen character, she responded, “I might say we actually love grass.” [Lilo wears a grass hulu skirt in the film.]

“By way of our rooms, she has a whole lot of toys in her room and I do not actually have toys,” she added. “I might say I am a artful woman.”

Maia Kealoha dances through the Gold Gala afterparty.

Araya Doheny/Getty Pictures for Gold Home

As for her favourite outfit from the film, Kealoha stated she beloved the washing swimsuit with a pineapple on it. For the gala itself, the younger actress wore a creation by Hawaiian designer — and Mission Runway alum — Kini Zamora.

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Kealoha, whose background in hula helped her land the coveted position, additionally confirmed off extra trendy dance strikes as the primary particular person to hit the afterparty on the gala, which kicked off after 10pm!

However it was no downside for the Hawaiian native, who was clearly on island time!

You may see Kealoha embark on a Hawaiian curler coaster trip when Lilo & Sew hits Disney+ quickly.

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