I recently got the chance to talk to Chanel Celaya about her role in ’21 Jump Street’. Here, Chanel talks about what it was like working with the cast and crew on-set and how she got into acting in the first place…
Hey Chanel! Thanks for taking time out to talk to me about your role in ’21 Jump Street’!
What’s the general plotline surrounding the film?
The general plot line surrounding the film is two rookie cops who go undercover as high school students to bust the cool kids who are selling a new synthetic drug. During Jenko’s and Schmidt’s return to high school their roles switch. Jenko who was once the popular jock is now the science nerd and Schmidt who was the geeky loser is now the big man on campus. Throughout the movie their friendship and career are tested and they are forced to confront their worst enemy…high school. At the end we see that friendship conquers all.
Tell us a bit about the character you play in the movie…
The character I play in the movie is Melodie, Schmidt’s next door neighbour. Melodie is the hot girl in school who everyone has a crush on including Schmidt. When he asks her to the prom she feels guilty saying no but is also embarrassed that the other students including the hot football player Jenko can see her talking to the nerdiest guy in school. Jenko eavesdrops on Schmidt’s pathetic attempt to ask Melodie to the prom and makes fun of him causing Schmidt to choke up and run away.
How did you get involved in the project in the first place?
I originally auditioned for the role of a girl who makes out with Schmidt at the house party after being stabbed but they cut that scene out and instead casted me for the role of Melodie.
How would you say this film is different and unique?
I would say this film is different and unique because it took a classic television show and made it relatable to people who grew up watching ’21 Jump Street’ and also to a younger audience who have never seen it. Also it was a big risk turning the show into a modern-day comedy as there are not many movies out there today that are actually worth watching.
The film stars Jonah Hill, Channing Tatum, Brie Larson, Dave Franco, Rob Riggle, DeRay Davis and Ice Cube – with Phil Lord and Chris Miller onboard as directors – what was it like working with the cast and crew on-set? Any good anecdotes?
Working with the cast and crew was AMAZING!! My first day there I wasn’t shooting and they were nice enough to invite me to lunch which was cool because they had a live New Orleans Jazz band. After stuffing my face, I got to hang out on set and watch Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum shoot the limo scene. It was exciting to see how a movie is made and how much work and effort is put into every scene, big or small. When it was my turn to shoot, I got to set early morning to get ready. Even though we didn’t start my scene until later that evening it was nice to hang out and get to know the cast and crew a little better. Everyone on set made me feel welcome, especially Jonah and Channing. They made an effort to get to know me and include me in conversation. On the way back to the hotel after the long day, I mentioned to one of the drivers who is from New Orleans that he could finally go home and relax with a nice glass of wine, he simply replied with his southern drawl: “Baby here in N’Orleans we don’t drink wine, we drink moonshine”.
Let’s talk a bit about you Chanel. What made you want to get into the industry in the first place?
I first started acting because of my Mom. She told me that I would be good at it and should take acting classes once I moved to Los Angeles. At age eighteen I moved to L.A. and decided to finally take a class to get my Mom off my back about it. As soon as I finished the first class, I called my Mom and told her that I loved it and it was so much fun. I have been in love with acting ever since. Mother’s always know best.
What advice would you give to anyone wanting to get into the industry?
If it is your passion or even if you have never tried it before and want to give it a shot, do it, you may surprise yourself . Also don’t take anything personal, just keep trying and have fun!
What is currently on your I-Pod?
Oh my! A lot of stuff, I like everything from rap to country. One minute you will hear Frank Sinatra, the next Juanes. I love music and it doesn’t matter what kind as long as it is good.
If you were stranded on a desert island, what three things could you not live without?
One, my Mom so she could cook for me, I’m not the best cook and she can make the simplest ingredients taste like a five-star restaurant. Two, my dog because I love animals and she is the cutest thing on earth. Three, music because well I wouldn’t want to have to depend on my own voice for that haha.
What is your favourite word?
What’s coming up for you in 2012?
To work again with such talented fun actors as I did in ’21 Jump Street’!
Thanks for the interview!