O My God, Overwhelming O1 Visa News!

When I came to Los Angeles about 4 months ago, all I focussed on was getting an agent, getting headshots, getting training…Then I got a meeting with a agent, and she said quite clearly: focus on something else, because without a work permit it’s all no use.

So I made getting a visa a priority; talked to people, Googled immigration lawyers, had lunch with foreigners that live in LA, spent hours on the USCIS website and so on. For months I was just lost in a maze of the many visa possibilities and requirements for them. Which ultimately proved the possibilities were extremely limited. I had spoken to a few immigration lawyers and they all thought they couldn’t do anything for me. So I started saying goodbye to LA in my mind already and reluctantly made plans for a return to the Netherlands. Until today…
About a week ago, during one of my Google sessions, I stumbled upon a blog about O1 visa’s. Then I found out the blog belonged to an immigration law firm specialized in those visas. Then I called them. Then we discussed my situation. Then they gave me a 50/50 chance, and asked for information. Then I sent the information. Then they said they’d let me know. And today, in my inbox on my phone while I was doing my finals at Santa Monica College, the potentially life-changing message came…

Hi Shanice,

I hope you are well. I have reviewed everything with my team and we think this can be an approvable case if we have the right documentation including everything you mentioned in the list. I am willing to take the case on and make a winner.

Please let me know how you would like to proceed.

Best wishes,

Immigration Lawyer from Heaven

I just wanted to scream and cry and jump up and down in joy, but I was in my finals so just sent a bunch of caps lock text messages to my nearest and dearest. Because this means I have an 80% chance of getting the much coveted O1 visa for actors! Which could mean that in 3 months, I am allowed to audition and work as an actress in Los Angeles! It’s scary and amazing and sad and exciting all at the same time!

But I shouldn’t celebrate too early, because my case can still be rejected by the government. Chances are bigger though, that it gets approved. Either way, I have a whole lot of work cut out for me, and a whole lot of decisions need to be made. I might return to the Netherlands for a bit to work so I can pay the legal fees, I might stay here, I might do a TV show in Holland… if you guys remember to vote for me! Either way, exciting, life changing times are ahead. I have a big sparkle of hope again, and hope I can one day look back on this day as the day my life changed.

This should also show to all of you that want to throw in the towel or feel hopeless that you should just never give up. It took me two years, a trip to LA, and thousands of dollars to get just this.

Remember that something wonderful may be just around a corner. All it takes is a new day to change your life.

Fingers crossed!
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Filed under Los Angeles

21 responses to “O My God, Overwhelming O1 Visa News!

  1. TheAngelStar

    Hey! I’m so happy for you!!! I plan to move to L.A for a couple of months next spring and I’m looking everywhere for this kind of information!
    If it’s possible, could you please send me your lawyer’s information so I can start this process too. You can msg me via my twitter = http://www.twitter.com/TheAngelStar or via facebook.com/TheAngelStar.
    Thanks for your help. 🙂

  2. Shooting Star

    That is AWESOME news! I’m keeping my fingers crossed for a good result, like I said to someone I know, for some reason I know you will get there, 🙂

  3. livelovelaughbelieve

    Wow Shanice this is awesome news! happy for you. I don’t know why but even though I don’t know you, I have this really good feeling you are going to go very far. Don’t give up and good luck for your visa.

  4. Emilie

    Oh my god, that’s so great! Congratulations!! I’m so excited for you! Your journey is amazing 🙂 !!!

  5. Awesome news! I’m so happy for you, you are a real trooper and big inspiration! Wishing you best luck with the case. Lenka xx

  6. Carlijn

    Gefeliciteerd! Wat een goed nieuws!
    Ik denk echt dat het je gaat lukken, maar ik zal voor je duimen!


  7. Barbara

    Congrats!!! I have been reading your blog for some time now. I am moving to LA in january very nervous and excited at the same time. I am moving from Miami. I am wondering how did you find your roommates? I am so scared of using craigslist. Any tips would be great!

  8. As I’ve offered previously. Any letter of recommendation I can send…just let me know. Happy to help!


  9. Aki Järvinen

    Awesome! Could you share some more details about your application? I mean, what kind of documents did you provide? I’m going for the O-1 as a filmmaker in a year or two so that would be really helpful. Congrats! 🙂

  10. Sophia Newton

    That is great news! Just wondering what kind of documents do they need? Birth certifacte etc? Cause one day Im going to move to LA because I really want to be an actress and I want to know what to take with me

  11. Hi Shanice,

    I stumbled across your blog through a video I saw on YouTube I believe. Whenever I find new blogs, I read just a little and get bored, however, with yours I just kept wanting to read more! You’re talented in so many ways. A great artist, actor I’m sure, and writer even! You’re bloggings are so entertaining. You have me laughing out loud with your cute little remarks and sense of humor. Your courage and ambition is so inspiring. I moved to LA when I was 18 to pursue acting and modeling. I was there for four months and had no idea what I was doing and no money. I decided to come back home and go back when I was ready. Two years later and I’m almost ready! I’ve been doing nothing for months but planning my way back but as you know already, it’s scary. I was there before and I felt like a fish out of water. Reading your blog has almost wiped away all my fear. I can’t say how thankful I am that you put so much time and effort into this blog. The topics you cover are things that I have been wondering for ages! I have one friend who is a working actor in Chicago who has actually recently premiered a new film in LA and NY. He’s told me I can ask him anything I want but he’s very busy and I don’t want to ‘burden’ him with thousands of questions. But you’re willing to help people you haven’t even met and I just love it! I wish you all the best of luck! I know you’ll go far. Keep up with the great blogs! You have so much beauty and I’m sure just as much talent! Maybe one day after I’ve made my move we could have some coffee 🙂

  12. Name

    you’ll never make it. give it up now before you end up a dead prostitute in a back alley in seedy Hollyweird! Go home!

  13. Name

    Ok, sorry to bust your bubble but please don’t be so naive! These lawyers scam you of money. You will pay thru your nose for nothing. They will tell you you did not qualify. A lawyer can do nothing for you. You must be established as an artist in your country FIRST for a O1B visa. You’re nothing special and you will NEVER NEVER make it! Give it up now.

  14. Peter

    Hopefully it works out but remain realistic: a lawyer loses nothing (they actually make money this way) whilst you pay them. There is no guarantee for a positive outcome.

  15. Trang

    my name is Trang. First of all, congratulations on your progress and your success. Been in LA twice, I loved it and I really enjoyed the Acting Corps experience. I have only been there for 1 and then 2 months, though. Not quite as long as you’ve been there. Can you tell me what kind of stuff I need for the O1 visa? Seems like you’re the only real person on the Internet who could help me out. I’m sorry it didn’t work out but I’m sure it will, eventually 🙂

    • Hi Trang, Google “O1 visa requirements” and you’ll find exactly what they officially are. Much better than I can tell you 🙂 Good luck, and keep us updated!

      • Trang

        Duh?! Why did I not think of that earlier?? Thank you for answering on my comment so quickly, though. I watched an episode of that TV thing you’re doing. I basically didn’t understand a word (I’m from Germany) but you did a pretty decent job there. I wish you all the best. You are so passionate and ambitious about this whole acting thing. I normally don’t talk to people on the Internet and I also don’t care but I have the feeling you are really really into this. And that’s pretty inspiring. So, therefore, I hope you will never lose your dream and you will never lose the strength to keep going (- it is suuuch a tough business ). I’ll be reading your blog. Take Care, Trang.

  16. Reblogged this on Immigration in America and commented:
    Fantastic article!. I want it for my blog. Thank you.
    I will give you a link.
    Miguel Angel

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