Leg warmers, leotards and synchronized exercises. Aerobics are returning from the 1980’s in the form of the new Pop TV comedy “Let’s Get Physical.” The comedy stars Matt Jones, Jane Seymour and AnnaLynne McCord and features the story of a son making his return to the aerobics business after his father passes away.
Jones and McCord chatted with CBS Local’s DJ Sixsmith about their careers, the show and aerobics.
DJ Sixsmith: Matt, how would you describe your career so far?
Matt Jones: It’s had a lot of ups and downs. It’s been a slow and steady climb. I started off with one line on “Gilmore Girls.” Yeah, one line on “Gilmore Girls” in 2002 and a short 16 years later, I’m the star of a television show. That’s how I would describe my career.
DJ Sixsmith: AnnaLynne, how did you get your start as an actress?
AnnaLynne McCord: I decided at nine years old that this is what I was going to do. The small little detail that could’ve inhibited that whole process what that I grew up in a trailer park and had no connections to Hollywood. Everyone thought it was crazy. At nine and still at 30, I’m a rebel. I was like screw all of y’all I’m doing this. I was home-schooled and graduated early from high school at 15 and moved to New York. I then went to try out LA for pilot season in 2006. It’s been 12 years and it’s been a very good move work wise. My big hit was “Nip/Tuck.” I told my agent that if I’m going in for this audition, I’m going to book it. She was like ok. I ended up booking the show and we hit the ground running. Then there was “90210” and there was a lot of early success. I didn’t necessarily know myself and I was going through the motions of working 90 hour weeks. I wasn’t totally fulfilled, even though I had achieved my dream. I got involved with an organization to raise awareness for human trafficking and I realized I needed something to give meaning to my world. It’s cool to now be doing my first comedy ever. I feel like this show is needed right now because we need to be able to escape and laugh. This show is full of laughs.
DS: What appealed to you both about “Let’s Get Physical”?
ALM: Honestly, comedy was a big part of it. I was flying back from somewhere and the script was laugh out loud funny. I kept having to apologize to the people next to me because of how funny it was. For a good half hour, the whole first class cabin wanted to murder me. The show is very different. There are not a lot of shows out there about aerobics or about the 80’s and it is a ridiculous setting of situational humor. We are so serious, yet there is an element that calls out our culture.
MJ: I got this really, really funny script and it made me laugh so much. It was about an aerobics comedy and I had never heard of that. To be frank, I feel like everyone is running out of ideas for television shows. It was an original idea and I was like, oh my gosh I have to do this because it hasn’t been done before.
DS: Matt, one of the highlights of your career was playing Badger on “Breaking Bad.” What’s the biggest lesson you learned from that experience?
MJ: You never know what’s going to be a hit and what’s going to be a big deal. I’ve done a lot of TV shows and that show is just the biggest thing I’ve ever done. It was just a supernova.
DS: AnnaLynne, what are some similarities and differences between you and your character Claudia Cross?
ALM: She is a little calculated and is out to plot and plan. She is not nice a lot of the time. The show runners and I worked on Claudia as a person you don’t want to be. I can definitely relate to that because I’ve played the mean girl my entire career. I had one person early in my career tell me I looked like the girl that was going to steal someone else’s boyfriend. I was homeschooled and I never had this concept of being prom queen or a cheerleader. Those have been the roles that I’ve ended up playing. A big part of this job is how you look the moment you walk on screen. I’ve learned to adapt to that. Claudia wants to be at the top of her game. She has to alter who she is later in the season. I can relate to being seen as someone who is not really true to who I am. We are similar in that regard.
DS: Matt, what can people expect when they tune into the show this season?
MJ: You know what, it’s just a comedy. It’s just a comedy that’s funny. It is nothing political and we’re not trying to say something. It’s just a fun and funny break from everything that’s going on right now. Remember when comedy was just comedy and when there was nothing behind it and it was just funny. That’s what this is.
DS: AnnaLynne, what’s been the greatest challenge in your career?
ALM: My own ego. When you get success early on, it gives you this sense of invincibility, which is a beautiful thing. It also is a negative because you can lose perspective a little bit on the struggle that a lot of people have to make it in whatever industry they find themselves in. I am so thankful because I worked really hard for a long time and that hard work paid off. Once I got there, I didn’t know what to do with it. Now I’m 30 years old, I’m a little older and definitely seasoned. I appreciate the opportunities and what they can give my life overall. This industry has a way of bringing these artist gems into your life.
DS: Matt, what can people learn from the long journey you’ve been on in your career?
MJ: What they can learn from me is that anyone can be on television. I’m some fat kid from the evil empire of Los Angeles. Anyone can be on TV. The biggest piece of advice I can give is to get good at what you’re trying to do before you try and do it. Don’t dream of success if you’re not good enough to deserve it.
“Let’s Get Physical” premieres Wednesday, Jan 24 at 8:30pm EST/PST on PopTV. Pop is a joint venture of CBS Corporation and Lionsgate.