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Kellee Stewart Discusses "Guess Who"

On Working with Bernie Mac, Zoe Saldana, and Ashton Kutcher in "Guess Who"


Kellee Stewart Guess Who

Kellee Stewart on the red carpet at the premiere of "Guess Who"

© Rebecca Murray
Kellee Stewart on Her Character: “I play Keisha. I play the sister to Theresa, played by Zoe Saldana. Wonderfully played by Zoe, I may add. And I’m a little happy that she’s done this because now I can get with anyone and get away with anything I want to get away with (laughing). So I’m more of the feisty, funky, eccentric girl in the film.”

Bonding With Her Onscreen Sister: “I feel like this is the sister that I never had. I actually just punk’d her though with Ashton [Kutcher]. I felt really bad because I had to lie to her for three weeks. But it went well. The punk went well. She was a trooper; she was so great. But we did, we became great friends. We spent time at each other’s house. We both know each other’s family. She’s a wonderful person and she is like the sister that I never had. I made a great friend out of this movie.”

Kellee Stewart on Playing Bernie Mac’s Daughter: “I call him Daddy Mac. [It was] so crazy but so much fun. Can you think of a better dad to have onscreen? I mean, really, you know? It was so much fun.”

On Who Was Crazier on the Set – Bernie Mac or Ashton Kutcher: “Bernie Mac! I have to say sometimes it was a toss-up. I think Bernie Mac because he always had a joke for everything. And Ashton was really thinking about the whole picture, how everything is going to really come together. They’re both extremely professional but they work differently. They’re like the odd couple, I call them. But Bernie Mac had me in stitches a lot.”

The Scene That Defines “Guess Who:” “I think the dinner scene where we’re all telling jokes and Ashton’s character, Simon Green, is telling some jokes about African-Americans. We’re laughing at ourselves and then we realize, ‘Okay, it’s no longer funny. Now let’s deal with what this issue is.’ I think that that’s what the film is about. You can laugh at certain things but then you have to take a step back and go, ‘But what’s the issue underneath the laughter. Let’s deal with it and get rid of it.’ I think that that scene has that in it.”

Relating to the Movie’s Set-up: “I have not brought anybody home, however I was that for someone else. Across the street from where I lived in Pennsylvania I dated a blonde, blue-eyed caucasian guy, and his parents were not happy to see me across the street with him. And it was very, very hurtful. I was called the ‘n’ word. Had the principal call his parents into school to let them know that he was dating an African-American girl, what that was like, and it was very painful for me in my childhood. My wonderful mother was the forefront of my life, the rock of my life, who said, ‘Listen, this does not define you. This is not who you are. This is ignorance in its worst guise and you have to decide whether or not it’s worth it for you.’ And at that moment it wasn’t.

Now I think you can love whoever you want to love. Love should be colorblind. It’s not always, but it definitely should be. But at that moment I learned a hard lesson. I will never let anyone degrade me, no matter what color they are. “

A Difficult Life Lesson at an Early Age: “I thought, ‘These people are adults and they don’t like me simply based on the color of my skin. That’s sad.’ That’s very, very sad. And we need to take the time now to go, ‘Why are we doing this to kids, to adults, to whoever?’ Just as long as people are treating each other well, that’s all we should care about.”

On Her Upcoming Project: “I am shooting a pilot right now that’s produced by Aaron Spelling. It is called ‘Crazy’ with Ms. Lara Flynn Boyle, and she’s wonderful. We start shooting tomorrow morning so I can’t party long. It is about a bunch of therapists that work in this same office. They all have different specialties. For instance, one specializes in children, one specializes in phobias, but they all have their own little crazy issues themselves. It’s a one hour comedy drama. It’s going to be fabulous. We’re keeping our fingers crossed that we get picked up. We’ve got a great, great cast.”

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