Keslee Blalock stars as Ivy in Netflix’s highly anticipated “Ivy & Bean” based on the New York Times bestselling book series, (all three films will be released simultaneously). In the upcoming season, she will star alongside Jane Lynch and Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Modern Family). Recently, she costarred in the Skit Guys film, “Family Camp”
Tell us a bit about how you got the role of Ivy in the Netflix series Ivy & Bean… Did you read the books before taking on the role?
I first auditioned for Bean actually! It wasn’t until about the 6th chemistry session that casting emailed and asked me to read for Ivy! I have read a few of the books after I got the part, I love them! I knew about the book series because my older sisters were fans of the books, so they helped me understand the characters.
Ivy has been described differently by different people, but do you feel there is anything in common between you and Ivy?
Oh yes! I’m like Ivy in a lot of ways. Ivy has such a powerful imagination and is a loyal friend, like me. I really loved her bedroom too! I wish I had her room! She has the best collection of dolls and everything was so organized. Her toys were so colorful and fun too! Ivy also likes to catch frogs, and so do I.
What was the toughest part about playing Ivy?
I think the toughest part was trying to not laugh when we were filming! It was especially hard if the scene was more serious, and there was something funny that had happened in between takes. We had so much fun and we laughed all day every day! Filming “Doomed to Dance” with Jessie Tyler Ferguson was awesome, he is hilarious and constantly had us laughing with his improv! We would all just go along with whatever direction he decided to go, and I loved that.
Can you share any tips or tricks you learned from Jane Lynch and Jesse Tyler Ferguson?
Both actors are so talented and are both so amazing with their choices. The way they improvised was so cool. They made each scene so unique and fun in completely different ways. We rehearsed those scenes for six weeks without them, so I had built a picture in my head of what the scene was going to look like, but when they came on set, they blew my mind with their creativity and funny acting choices. Every take was a surprise from how we rehearsed. I loved working with them and am grateful for the time I had learning from them.
Have there been any behind-the-scenes stories you can tell us about?
Oh man, there are so many! Something that not many people know is that it took several actresses to play Ivy and Bean to complete all 3 movies in such a short time! Most days there were at least 2 sets of doubles to play Ivy and Bean! One day we had so many girls dressed in the same “Ivy and Bean” dresses that our parents couldn’t tell who was who! I loved meeting and playing with my picture doubles in between scenes. One of them taught me how to draw, and now I love drawing.
What is your favorite book series that you would want to be made into a series?
I love all of the Magic Treehouse books!!! I would love to play Annie! I’ve always loved her! All the adventures they go on and the imaginations are so fun. I feel like that is a book series that would be an amazing movie series!
If you could guest star in another Netflix series past or present, which one would it be and why?
Oh for sure Stranger Things!! That is my favorite series! I am a huge fan of Millie Bobby Brown and Sadie Sink! They are so talented, and I hope to be like them one day. It is one of my dreams to work with them.
What was the best thing about filming Ivy & Bean?
I think the best part was meeting so many amazing people and getting to bring such a popular book series to life! Madison, who plays Bean, is my best friend! We still talk every day, and I can’t imagine my life without her! Also filming in Vancouver was amazing. It’s so beautiful there and I really enjoyed the weather there too!
What is your favorite thing about social media?
My favorite thing about social media is that I get to keep up with my friends and family when I can’t be in the same city as them. I love to feel connected to them and feel like I’m part of their life. I also love to see what my favorite celebrities are up to and watch everyone’s reels and videos! I go down rabbit holes of watching videos and after videos sometimes and the next thing I know it’s bedtime!
Are there any things about you that people would be surprised to learn?
I think people would be surprised to know that I only started acting when I was 7 years old. So many of my friends who are kid actors have been acting since they were babies! My passion started as a dancer! I was a competitive dancer up until I started acting at 7. I love all the
dance styles! I completed my first dance solo at 5 years old. It was a really cute jazz solo called “Pity Party” and I had a little birthday cake prop and a fluffy party dress costume. I have always loved performing! Thank you so much for talking with me! ☺ –Keslee