Keith Powers Talks “Straight Outta Compton”, MTV’s “Faking It”, And “Maximum Impact”

Budding actor and model, Keith Powers is a series regular of the Teen Choice Award winning MTV series, “Faking It” and has a role as Dr. Dre’s younger brother, Tyree Crayton in the highly anticipated upcoming Legendary Pictures biographical drama, “Straight Outta Compton”. 

Interview By: Lucky Smith

Introduce yourself for us. How long have you been in the business? 
I am Keith Powers and I am from Sacramento, the capital of California. I am blessed to be from such a city which taught me to appreciate the things I’ve experienced today. I have been in the business since I was 17 years old.

We understand you were a serious athlete. Can you give us some background on that?
I played football from 8-17 years old. I stopped after highschool. I also ran track in highschool and played basketball up to my Sophmore year.

What made you decide to go another route instead of following the sports route?
I was good at sports but I was not really driven enough to go pro, honestly. Reality hit me when I was finding out that I would not be playing football at the next level. It was a blessing because I found my way into the modeling industry and eventually acting.

What was the process of getting picked up as a model and what agency was it with?
I got signed to JE Models SF first. I was recommended to meet with them when they needed young new African American models. First, I sent regular photos then shortly after I met with them and signed that same day. Later, I eventually signed with Wilhelmina LA.

What have been some of the biggest or best modeling jobs you’ve done so far?
I worked for Aeropostale, which was very fun. The Abercrombie shoot was a great experience as well. I loved shooting for GQ and of course I loved walking for Calvin Klien in Milan. That was such an amazing experience.

How did you transition from modeling to acting?
I signed with my commercial/theatrical agency HRI Talent after being recommended by Wilhelmina LA then shortly signed with Luber Roklin Entertainment. I told Wilhelmina I would be interested in acting at first because I felt like it went hand in hand with modeling. Acting was definitely tougher than I expected but I fell in love with it.

What shows have you appeared in?
I am on MTV’s “Faking It”, Yahoo Screen’s “Sin City Saints”, I guest starred in “Pretty Little Liars”, and I am working on an ABC show at the moment called “Recovery Road”.

Great! We understand that you are in the most anticipated movie of the year, “Straight Outta Compton”. What role are you playing?
I am playing Tyree Crayton. Dr. Dre’s little brother.

How does it make you feel to be in such a big movie of such a legend of a group?
It is amazing. I feel I have a big responsibility play ing Dr. Dre’s little brother and I am super excited.

What was it like working Ice Cube and Dr. Dre? 
Working with Dr. Dre and Ice Cube was a humbling experience and mind blowing because I grew up on all things west coast.

What was the biggest thing you learned from that experience?
The biggest thing I learned was that I was going to be a part of history and seeing how important the film was to Dr. Dre and Ice Cube and how serious they took this movie on set. I got to experience being on such a huge set and learned a lot from my amazing castmates.

What other movies are you featured in coming up?
I am going to Russia soon to film a movie called, ‘Maximum Impact’.

Considering you are so multi-talented, which would you consider your biggest love at this point?
My biggest love at this point is acting.

Do you have a 5 year plan? If so, what is it?
I would love to be a lead male actor with lead roles in studio films and a series regular on a prime time show.

What advice would you give upcoming actors, models, or athletes trying to get ahead?
Hard work is undefeated. At the end of the day, we have to work on our craft. Continue to work. It is not all about short cuts.

What would you say to the young black males who feel they can’t get ahead to achieve their dreams?
I’d say continue to work hard and do not take things so personal. Also, embrace being who you are and even if you are the token, embrace that as well instead of looking at it as a disadvantage. At the end of the day, we all have disadvantages.

Lastly, how can you be reached?
Follow me on my Instagram @KeithPowers or Twitter @KeithTPowers. My website is www.thisiskeithpowers.com.

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