Brytnee Ratledge is determined.
The actress is one of the many New Mexico film success stories.
Ratledge has worked her way up through the industry over the years.
She’s done background work. She’s been in a featured role.
And she’s done a lot of stunt work.
All of the milestones have led her to another one – lead actress in a film.
Ratledge stars in Lifetime’s “The Au Pair Nightmare,” which was filmed in New Mexico last May.
“I had actually worked with the producers on another film before they started this project,” she says. “I had such a blast working with the amazing producers and incredible cast. I have to say the local New Mexico crews are some of the most hardworking crews in the business.”
“The Au Pair Nightmare” follows Taylor, played by Ratledge, who is looking to escape her past. She applies to be the au pair for a well-to-do, small-town family.
Invited into their world, Taylor starts to suspect her very private, new employers are hiding something, and her curiosity quickly puts her directly in their crosshairs.
She discovers their darkest secret and must save herself.
The film also stars Anne Heise and Tristan Thomas. It is streaming on Lifetime.com and its app, as well as all major video-on-demand platforms.
Ratledge says Taylor is a strong young woman trying to find her way.
“Life dealt her a difficult hand, and she’s trying to do her best to be OK,” she says. “Then she gets caught up in the midst of this crazy family and trauma.”
Ratledge’s journey in the film industry started when she was 8 years old.
The journey was almost over by the age of 11, after she signed with an agency that scammed her out of the majority of her money for college.
“That was a huge setback for me,” she says. “I was done with it.”
She went to high school in Clovis and moved back to Albuquerque to attend the University of New Mexico.
She now resides in both Los Angeles and New Mexico.
While at UNM, she was about to do background work on a production and the fire was ignited again.
“I was there for 14 hours, and I felt like someone was going to have to drag me off the set,” she says. “I loved it. I started doing stand-in work, and then I dove into classes.”
Working with Lora Martinez-Cunningham has helped her gain the confidence and skills.
“Lora is a mentor of mine,” Ratledge says.
Being able to film her first lead role is an accomplishment. The feat is twofold for Ratledge.
“I’m more grateful that I was able to be home while filming this project,” she says. “There’s a comfort of being in New Mexico. I’d get off of work at sunset and see that sky. To be able to be around family and be at home added to how special this role is for me.”