If you’ve ever felt like you’ve encountered greatness, you will understand how I felt when I witnessed the incredible talent of Chris Kelley. The rising star most recently appeared in the Independent film, Let Clay Be Clay, that made it’s debut at the Pan African Film Festival. He captured the audience on screen and his kindness and contagious smile, made us want to get to know the man behind the character.
Born in Miami, Fl. and raised in Nassau, Bahamas, Kelley discovered his love for acting at an early age.
” I would stay inside and watch those musicals. The Sound Of Music, The King and I and I’d be drawn to it. I couldn’t tell my friends, because they’d be like…what you doing watching those musicals? But, I just loved them and it just grew and grew and I became more curious and I took an acting class. The rest is history.”
But his journey hasn’t been easy. Kelley, received a scholarship to the University of Miami. The intelligent star was Pre-Med and on track to become a Neurologist. But, an encounter with the legendary Spike Lee changed his career direction. He heard Spike speak about his re-union with his old classmates at Morehouse. Lee talked about how they were all unhappy because they chose their careers because of money, parental pressure or prestige instead of following their true passion in life. Lee said if you follow your passion and you work hard at it, the money will come and you’ll never feel like you have a day of work. Lee’s speech inspired Kelley to follow his heart, turn down Med School and upon graduation he bought a one way ticket to Los Angeles, determined to turn his passion into his profession.
Along his journey Chris Kelley has had roles in films like Notorious and shows like Numb3rs and Will To Live. But he is making his mark in Hollywood through Independent films. Kelley has 3 films in post-production and is currently filming an action packed thriller. His chilling performance in Let Clay Be Clay of Devonte, a high school teenager caught up in gang life, made you hate his character, but want to know more about the actor.
The handsome Bahamian with a heart of gold can potray a bad boy like nobody’s business, however he’s been everything from a homeless man to an action hero and he always seems to get lost in his characters. The well rounded actor is a graduate of Joanne Baron and D.W. Brown’s school of Acting in Los Angeles (Halle Berry, Aaliyah, Patrick Dempsey) and is currently working with famed Dialect coach Denise Woods. Denise personally selects her students and only works with the best. Her clients include Idris Elba, Will Smith, Anthony Mackie, Zoe Saldana, Queen Latifah, Forrest Whitaker and now…Chris Kelley.
CNikky caught up with Kelley during the Pan African film festival. He spoke to us exclusively about his journey into acting.
Watch the interview below:
Chris Kelley is Talent On The Rise! We are excited for his journey. Look for him…in the movies!