Every child has a dream, a goal and an aspiration to be something they admire, but how often is that dream, that goal and that admiration achieved?
For 15-year-old Keke Palmer, she’s living the life she has always dreamt of and she credits her success to her fans and her family.
This rising star landed her first small role in “Barber Shop 2,” and since then has established herself as one of the most successful, young, talented, fresh-faced stars her generation has seen.
Palmer took the time to speak with the Recorder after a brief visit to Indianapolis.
You have accomplished so much, and you have only been in the industry for five years. When did you know you wanted to become an actress?
Palmer: When I was 9 years old about to turn 10. I had one of my first auditions during an open casting call for the “Lion King.” That’s when I knew this was something I really wanted to do.
What was your first experience like on the set of “Barber Shop 2”?
It was so great getting cast for the part. It was an amazing feeling. I had never been on a movie set to act and it was so cool. People say there is nothing better than your first. I think it was my best experience because it was my first experience.
Raised in Chicago, currently living in California, how supportive is your family of your acting career?
Me and my whole immediate family moved to California when I was 10 and we have been living here ever since. Not only are they very supportive of everything that I do, but they are always by me 100 percent. I can’t say I know a whole lot of families that would of just picked up and moved for their child to pursue an acting career that may or may not go through.
You have had the opportunity to work with several seasoned stars in movies like “Akeelah and the Bee,” “The Longshots,” and “Jump In!” who was your favorite actress or actor to work with?
I don’t have a favorite. All of the people that I have worked with have helped me in some way, shape or form. I will always remember everything that they taught me, and there is always something to take away even if it’s something small by acting with them.
You performed parts of your album “So Uncool” released in 2007 at the National Girl Scouts Council Session/ 51st Convention in Indianapolis. How does it feel to have so many young fans look up to you?
It makes me want to strive to do better and continue to do more roles like”Akeelah and the Bee” I want to keep putting that image out there. Whenever I do a movie or make a song I always like to reach out and talk to the youth because if it weren’t for them I wouldn’t be able to do all the things that I am doing.
You currently have your own sitcom on Nickelodeon cable networks”True Jackson” that recently debuted. What is it about?
I play a 15-year-old-girl and I hold a vice president position at a huge fashion company. I’m True Jackson, and it is very different because she is not a dramatic character. She’s funny and goofy. So it’s great to play a character that is a lot like me.
Why should your fans watch the show?
I think it will let kids know that you can be anything that you want to be, even though you are a child. That doesn’t mean you can’t follow your big dreams early. For True Jackson whoever thought that a 15-year-old-girl would be vice president. Even though it’s not reality that doesn’t mean that it can’t become reality.
Keke Palmer, an actress embodied with talent that defies age continues to climb the ladder of success while remaining humble. When asked what quote she lived her life by she simply replied, “If you can believe it, then you can achieve it.”