Nicola Peltz made her feature film debut in “Deck the Halls”, with Danny Devito and Matthew Broderick. A New York native, Nicola starred onstage opposite Jeff Daniels and Alison Pill in the Oliver Award-winning production of “Blackbird” at the Manhattan Theatre Club – the play was directed by multi-Tony winner Joe Mantello (“Wicked”, “Assassins”).
Nicola’s strong acting skills – as well as her natural talent for sports – landed her in M. Night Shyamalan’s ninth film, “The Last Airbender”. Peltz’s experience having played for a female regional hockey team, combined with her love for extreme sports, made her the perfect choice for the intensive martial arts role of the Waterbender Katara.
Like co-star Noah Ringer, the young actress Nicola Peltz had also decided to submit herself for a part in Shyamanlan’s latest film, and was called in to read for the role of waterbender Katara – and later, offered the role. Peltz has become quite familiar with the character, having faithfully watched the series with her younger twin brothers.
Like Shyamalan’s daughters, little girls everywhere look up to Katara and her sttength s a young woman. Say Peltz, “She is an amazing role model for girls. Anything she puts hr mind to, she’ll do – she is so physically and mentally strong.”
Nicola had played ice hockey for many years, and was thinking about playing professionally before she made the decision to pursue acting. Her athletic skills came in handy when training for the role of Katara, which included a regimen of martial arts training and started five months before filming.
Says the New York native, “I started training on my own in Brooklyn and learned Kung Fu, whcih is a style of martial arts that is force against force. Then, a couple of months before we started filmings, I went to Philadelphia and began training in Tai Chi, then putting the choreography of the gith scenes together with Noah and Jackson.”
Nicola focused the majority of her training on Tai Chi Chaun, a martial art with a gentler, slower style and flowing movements. Tai Chi uses internal energy to promote mental calmness and calirty, and it is the chosen style of bening utilised by the Water Tribe.
Nicola has often expressed that she will hopefully find herself attached to any “Airbender” sequels which come into production. Next up after “Airbender”, Nicola finds herself alongside “Twilight” superstar Robert Pattinson in “Unbound Captives” due for release in late 2010.
On March 26, 2013, it was announced by director Michael Bay that Peltz has been cast as the new female lead in the upcoming fourth Transformers film. It is reported that she along with co-stars Mark Wahlberg and Jack Reynor will be the new lead human cast and are all contracted for three films beginning a new Transformers trilogy.
In 2013, Peltz featured as Bradley Martin, a high school student, in eight episodes of the A&E series Bates Motel.