Now the show is coming to an end as spin off, Tracy Beaker Returns, is back for the final time – and Dani, who turns 23 this year, is ready to ditch the curly locks and shed her child-star image.
She talks to FemaleFirst about Beaker, BAFTAs, and being Doctor Who’s next assistant.
How did you find out about the role – did your hair give you a head start?
I went to a theatre school and I got sent for the audition, so basically through my agent. I do actually have an afro in real life, my hair is ridiculously curly! So that was actually my real hair, but I never had it cut in that style because it was disgusting. I used to be in make up for a good hour in the morning getting it all pinned up to make it look shorter because it’s quite long!
You started playing Tracy Morgan at a young age, did you ever feel like you missed out on your childhood by devoting so much of it to filming?
I was 12 when I started, so I suppose I did miss out on things, but I also got to do loads of stuff that not many other 12 year olds get to do, like presenting on CBBC, and going to awards ceremonies. When I was 16 I got to go to Buckingham Palace to be involved with the Queen’s birthday. So, yes, I did miss out on a lot, but I also got to do loads of stuff that teenagers would die to do. It was a completely different childhood, but I don’t regret it at all.
Tracy was a much loved character – are you going to miss playing her?
Yeah, I am going to miss playing her because she was so much fun and you never quite know where her moods are going to go, and I like that about a character, when you have no idea how she’s going to react in situations, and it is fun getting to shout at people, because I don’t do that in real life. I am going to miss the character, and it was ten years of my life but I’m excited about playing other characters.