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Interview with Josh Kelly of "UnReal" on
I enjoyed speaking with Josh this morning! I loved his
character Cutter on "One Life to Live," and he's great on
the new show "UnReal" as well. He's just so gorgeous as well
as such a fine actor. Don't miss the new show!
Here is the
audio of our interview. I hope you
If the audio is not streaming well, please right-click on
this link and save it to your computer. It should work
better that way!
Here's the transcription by
1. How did this role come about for you?
I auditioned, and I went in and did what I thought was a
pretty good job, and then I made a joke on the way out, and
they called me back in and said, "Hey, you did a great job
the first time, can you do more of what you did when you
were leaving?" I said, "You mean more jokey, kind of be more
like me?" So then I did that and got the part.
2. Had you worked with any of the other people in the
Ah, no I hadn't. I mean, we shot the pilot in Atlanta a
while ago, so before we went to series, I'd become good
friends with Freddie Stroma. The series is being shot in
3. You have to lug a big heavy camera around a lot. Is it
difficult or did you have to do any special training to
learn how to use it?
It is difficult. For the first two weeks carrying a
steady camera, my back was not used to that kind of -- it's
just a different muscle group that you've never used before,
but then your body adjusts, and it worked out okay. The
camera guys were really good about helping me out and
letting me know. I like to learn with new roles, so I was
receptive to learning, and I asked them specifically things
that would make me look stupid or make me look like I know
what I'm doing.
4. Did the showrunners give you much background
information about Jeremy besides what's in the scripts?
In shooting the pilot, Sarah Shapiro and I talked a lot
about Jeremy. It was a pretty natural fit. I talked about my
history with girls. She told me about her idea of Jeremy,
and we kind of fleshed out the character together.
5. When did you shoot the show and how long did it take?
I auditioned for this show almost two years ago, so it
has been a highly-anticipated Monday night, 10 p.m., on
Lifetime. It's been a long, long journey. We shot the first
pilot in October-November 2013. Then we got picked up. They
kept pushing the dates and doing rewriting, which is good.
They were making sure the show was gonna be good. Then we
went and shot last summer in Vancouver the first 10
episodes. Now we're still waiting. I was so excited to work
on the show. It was really great. I really love working for
Lifetime -- I did a couple of episodes of "Army Wives"
before, and they're such a good network to work with. Then
getting to know Sarah and Marti (Noxon), I really felt safe
with the job. I was excited. There is limited control you
have as an actor.
6. How many episodes are there?
We did 10 episodes for the season.
7. What is the best thing about "UnReal" - why should
people tune in?
It's never been explored. I mean, there's been TV shows
like Sports Night, Newsroom, & Murphy Brown -- all these
shows about people working on a TV show, but there's never
been a show about people working on a reality show that
wasn't a spoof. So it becomes such a big part of our world
-- reality TV stars are the famous people you read about in
the magazine counters, and so working behind that, it just
lends itself to good storytelling, because all these
professionals that have worked in the entertainment industry
for a long time they get to see people go through incredibly
dramatic situations on a daily basis and then exposed to the
world. It's pretty crazy. I don't think that answers your
question. [Laughs] I apologize. It's exciting, and it's new,
and it's really well done.
8. Have you ever been on a reality show?
No, I haven't -- not really. Well, my friends cajoled me
into doing some pilots that it was in our contract that they
would never air. So, it was just for fun. It was in LA. I
have a lot of friends who have done reality TV shows, but
it's never been my -- I think there is an intrinsic real
difference between people that want to become actors and
want to become reality stars. I wouldn't be very comfortable
having the real me just be -- the inside and outside of Josh
Kelly -- known to everyone. I prefer to perform and do good
9. What's your most memorable fan encounter?
I think it was right when I first started doing "One Life
to Live." I have a really good friend, Julie White, who just
got nominated for a Tony on Broadway. We used to hang out a
lot, and she would always be recognized, so we went to this
Yankees game, and it was just so funny that -- I'd never
been recognized before really, and every time I went to the
concession stand, they were like, "You're Cutter Wentworth
from 'One Life to Live'." It was just neat, because she was
so proud of me, because she's seen me grow since I had a
line in "Transformers" and now we were out together. It was
just memorable to me, because she was so happy for me.
10. Jeremy seems to be a fairly normal person compared to
the rest of the people on the show. Do you think he has
hidden secrets we'll learn about later?
I think he's normal. He's a lot like a lot of crew guys
that work on shows. They're really talented and really
capable, and I mean, no one's normal, you know? I don't
think anyone's normal. He tries to be a moral compass, but
you've got to follow your heart. Sometimes your heart leads
you into craziness.
11. How is Jeremy different from Cutter?
Jeremy is very different than Cutter, because Jeremy just
wants to be an honest guy making an honest living while
Cutter did not want to do anything honestly. I think if
they'd developed Cutter a little more, he'd have gotten more
involved in the mob. I actually really liked Cutter as a
character. He was actually trying to be a good guy, because
he was always trying to do the right thing for the girl, and
he always got in trouble, then he ended up doing what he did
best, which was con some people. OLTL remains one of my
all-time favorite projects to be involved with. I still
remain in touch with most of the people -- almost everyone.
12. You had your shirt off a lot on OLTL; will you be
doing that much on UnReal?
That is a funny question. My dad always makes sure when
people say, "Oh, I saw your son on TV," he asks, "Did he
have his shirt on?" Well, fortunately, I started working out
as soon as I got to Canada, because my roommate was Freddie
Stroma who played the suitor character -- the guy who's
picking the girls on the show. So he and I became roommates.
We got an apartment together, and he was in a movie called
"Pitch Perfect" where he showed off his abs. He's a very
in-shape guy, and I quickly realized if it was going to be
realistic for there to be any question about anyone. Rachel,
who's the girl that I like on the show. If he honestly was
gonna try to get her back, he would need to get in shape.
Yeah, I started working out, and later on in the show, I end
up having some scenes without my shirt on.
13. Mary from Facebook wants to know if you're single.
I am not single. I have a girlfriend. She is awesome. She
came to the premiere. She's really cool.
14. Chris from Facebook asks: Is there anything you can
tell us about who Jeremy is (besides being a cameraman and
He's a bit of an artist. He wants to be a director in
feature films. He went to film school. He's working on the
show to pay the bills and keep himself in the industry.
That's part of the struggle, working at a passionless job,
and that's something that a lot of people in the industry
struggle with, you know? In every facet of it, but he's an
artisan. He liked to build things, and he'd love to build
15. Is "UnReal" the only thing you're working on right
now or do you have other projects in the works?
I finished a short film with a friend of mine. He makes
his directing debut. It is one of the hardest things I've
ever worked on, and something I'm very, very proud of. It's
called "Prisoner of War," and it deals with the issues of
veteran suicide and the things that veterans deal with on a
day-to-day basis. It was very difficult to shoot, very
draining, I should say. It wasn't difficult, because he's a
great director who worked hard, but it's a very important
16. You're a veteran. Do you have a lot of friends who
were affected by that?
Yeah, well, that's the thing, you know? You go to war,
you get affected. It's how you deal with it and knowing you
can deal with it, with support groups and friends, and you
can talk to people about issues. You don't have to kill
yourself. I was very fortunate to, immediately after I got
out of the military, I came to LA and started acting. So I
started taking all these classes that encouraged me to deal
with my emotions, handle my emotions, so it kind of helped
me realize the issues that I did have. War changes everyone.
Acting as therapy is a project I've been working on for a
long time. I really would love to get a veterans acting
organization started, but one step at a time. First, I gotta
have an awesome TV show, and it looks like maybe Monday
17. Anything else you'd like to say about the show or to
It was such a fun show to work on. Everyone really worked
hard, and it is a really, really good show. It was cool,
every time we'd go into post production for audio looping,
just talking to the people that were heavily involved in
post production and how excited they were watching the whole
episode instead of just the part they were supposed to work
on. A lot of guys would say, "Man, I never thought I'd watch
a Lifetime show, but I'm definitely watching this thing."
It's really good. It's really cool. It's going to appeal to
a lot of people, and I'm just very proud. I'm very proud and
excited to be a part of it. It's dramatic -- a lot of drama.
nearly naked on billboards across town, heightened buzz has
been generating around smoldering actor
who is set to star in LIFETIME’s highly anticipated scripted
drama series, UNREAL, inspired by Sarah Gertrude
Shapiro’s award-winning independent short Sequin
Raze. Kelly stars as
‘Jeremy’ in this provocative titillating drama, which
gives a fictitious
behind-the-scenes glimpse into the chaos surrounding the
production of a dating competition program. Set against the
backdrop of the hit dating competition show "Everlasting," "UnREAL"
is led by flawed heroine Rachel Goldberg (Appleby), a young
producer whose sole job is to manipulate her relationships
with and among the contestants to get the vital dramatic and
outrageous footage that the program’s dispassionate
executive producer Quinn King (Zimmer) demands while also
having to work on set with her ex-boyfriend/cameraman
‘Jeremy,’ played by Kelly. What
ensues is an eye-opening look at what happens in the
outrageous world of unscripted television, where being a
contestant can be vicious and being a producer a whole other
UNREAL premieres on
Monday, June 1st at 10/9c on
In addition, to his breakout role in the alluring drama
series UNREAL, Josh is best known
for his role as “Cutter Wentworth” on ABC’s Emmy winning
daytime series “One Life to Live.” Other television credits
include “Ben and Kate,” “Army Wives,” “True Blood,” and
“Dollhouse,” to name a few. His feature film acting credits
include JARHEAD 2: FIELD OF FIRE, ZERO DARK THIRTY,
TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN and TRANSFORMERS: DARK
OF THE MOON, among many others.
Born in Yokosuka, Japan to a Navy family,
Josh Kelly was active in
theater from a young age as he moved around the globe. After
four tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan as an Army
Ranger, Josh moved to Los Angeles to
return to his passion: acting. In honor of his military
background, Josh is a huge advocate
for the Wounded Warrior Project, a
charity and veterans service
organization that offers a variety of programs, service and
events for wounded veterans of the military actions
following the events of September 11, 2001.
Josh also wrote, directed, produced
and starred in the short film COPE, a story of two
special operations soldiers who return from war wrought with
post traumatic stress.
Read Our Review of "UnReal!"
Josh's movie "Prisoner of War" comes out November 11, 2015.
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Page updated 8/21/23