Celeste Allen played the part of the Business Woman. I knew immediately I wanted her in this part as soon as she came in to audition. There were several other really great actors that came in to read for the part, but Celeste was the very picture of pushy. And yet in real life she is as sweet as pie.
Sue: Celeste, how did we meet?
Celeste: We first met by exchanging emails. I saw your casting notice on the Phila Film Office site. I thought: this sounds like a great acting opportunity with pay!! I sent my resume and headshots to you and waited for a response. I was happy to get the message to come in for an audition. My nerves were getting the best of me, not because of the audition, but because of the drive to Reading, PA. By myself!! I’ve been known to sometimes be “Direction Challenged.” I’m good driving on the highway, and yes I do use a GPS, but occasionally I get a little turned around or lost. SMH! Panic sets in. I was truly honored and excited to be a part of this great film!! I loved meeting and working with you and all the cast and crew. I can’t wait to see the final product!! Again, I really loved working with you Sue and everyone one involved in your film! A great group of awesome professionals!!
Sue: Well, I loved having you. I agree: everyone was very professional. We got a lot packed into that one day of shooting because of that. So, how did you get into acting?
Celeste: I started acting in 2000; when I was selected by Mike Lemon Casting (MLC) to be an extra in M. Night Shyamalan’s movie, “Unbreakable.” I had been laid off from PA Hospital in November of the previous year. After the holidays, I received an LMHS night class brochure in the mail and found a few interesting classes, one of which was “How To Get Paid As An Extra.” I learned about acting, resumes, headshots, and being an extra. So I wrote up a short resume about my modeling, activities, and sports, and got two photos and took them to MLC. I called after two weeks and was told that I would be an extra in “Unbreakable!” The rest is in my Bio.
Sue: Nice. What’s your favorite on set experience?
Celeste: My favorite “on set experience” was working on the Creed movie set in Philly. I was one of the ringside VIPS at the main fight scene between Creed and Pretty Ricky. We were on set for 10 days. I literally had an up close and personal front seat to all the action everyday! I got to see Ryan Coogler and his brother, Michael B. Jordan, and Sylvester Stallone, and Pretty Ricky all hard at work to bring this great movie all together. It was so awesome and amazing to watch these professional actors, director, and first AD Don Sharks, collaborating. I’ve learned so much of what goes on behind the scenes in making a great movie. I really loved meeting and working with so many great actors and actresses, of whom I’m friends and castmates with today. We all made a new friend just about every day. We worked 12-14 hrs and so we all shared quite a few meals (breakfast and lunch) together for ten days. We also enjoyed many great snacks and drinks through out the day. Special thanks goes to Heery-Loftus Casting for bringing us all together!
Sue: Got any interesting stories about any of the Creed celebrities? Or anything that happened on set?
Celeste: As far as any stories on set: we gave Sylvester Stallone a standing ovation after he got into the boxing ring to acknowledge the crowd’s request for him to do the “Hey Adreeeaaan” line. So he jumped into the ring and said his famous line as he walked around the entire ring to thank everyone. The people of Philly showed their Love for “Rocky!”
Sue: Very cool! I haven’t seen Creed yet, but I’m looking forward to it. One last question: Any stories you want to share about the A Perfect You experience?
Celeste: My story for “A Perfect You:” A few things come to mind. I missed my exit and had to drive another 30 min to the next exit and then I was really lost! I left home earlier to give myself extra time to arrive before my new call time. I was on and off the highway and passed Penn campus at Berks about three times. I talked with Demetri and my husband over and over again. Nothing was making sense. The GPS had me make a left at a car wash that led me down a dirt gravel road on someone’s property. Now I was even more lost! Thank God for Demetri being patient and calling me back, three times! My other experience was all of us four actors and the camera guy in a small car. This was funny and reminded me of a circus act when all the clowns are filing out of a small beetle bug car. We got to know each other pretty well! Feet, camera, cords and briefcase everywhere in different directions and angles. Poor camera man and sound guy — all squashed up! Windows up and down. We all knew we had to keep the continuity the same.
Sue: I was sorry you wound up being late, but I’m glad we had changed your start time so even though you got lost, you were there for the important scenes. I really wanted you in that first scene we shot, but it wasn’t necessary to the story. It was just going to be a real fun little thing happening in the background. And yes, the car shoot was a trip. It’s my favorite part of the film. You guys were great. Any last words?
Celeste: It was truly a fun experience! I loved working with everyone there that day — cast and crew. Thank you for an awesome day on set! The food was great! Special thanks to Demitri and Kate for their driving directions! Hope to work together again!!
Sue: Yeah, the food was great. Thanks to Camellia for that. At any rate, good job. I’ll see you at the screening and I hope we get to work together again.
Celeste Allen’s Bio
Celeste Allen, formally known as Celeste Thompson, is an actress born and raised in Philadelphia, PA and is the oldest of eight siblings. Celeste began her acting career in 2000 as a BG actress in the movie “Unbreakable,” while laid off from work . In 2014, Mrs. Allen was cast in the short film “Rewind.” In 2015, Celeste was given the role of “A Retired Dancer with Alzheimer’s” in the play, “Underground Episodes.” Next, Mrs. Allen was featured as a “Ringside VIP in the Movie “Creed.” Celeste Allen played the supporting role of “The Business Woman” in the Short film “A Perfect You.” In the Short, “End-In-Itself,” Celeste’s role is Grandmother to Allison. Mrs. Allen is “Dr. Celeste” in the Movie “Boston2Philly.” Currently, Celeste is in the Supporting Role of “The Loving Mother” of 3 siblings in the Movie MUDA: When Time Is All That Matters.