Exclusive: Drew Seeley Chats “Lovestruck: The Musical”

CHELSEA KANE, DREW SEELEYABC Family will celebrate spring with the world premiere of the original movie “Lovestruck: The Musical” (formerly known as “Elixir”), premiering on April 21, 8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT. “Lovestruck: The Musical” also features a stellar creative team in producer Debra Martin Chase and Terry Rossio, writers Terry Rossio & Jaylynn Bailey, choreographer Michael Rooney and director Sanaa Hamri.

“Lovestruck: The Musical” tells the story of Harper (Jane Seymour), one of the best dancers to hit Broadway. But an injury caused her to leave the spotlight, become a choreographer, and raise her daughter, Mirabella (Sara Paxton). When Mirabella, the star of Harper’s next big production, decides to quit the show to get married, her mother is determined to put a stop to the wedding and show Mirabella that she cannot give up her career for love, especially to marry playboy Marco (Alexander DiPersia). After the long flight to the Italian wedding site, Harper takes a swig from a strange bottle that is supposed to dull the pain of an old dance injury. Instead, the elixir magically turns Harper 30 years younger.

Harper’s younger appearance (Chelsea Kane plays Young Harper) allows her to secretly infiltrate the wedding – only to confront a huge obstacle in Mirabella’s father, Ryan (Tom Wopat), who can recognize his ex-wife in any form. After he too experiences the reverse-aging effects of the elixir (Drew Seeley plays Young Ryan), Ryan teams with Harper to reverse the damage she’s done to Mirabella and Marco’s relationship, hopefully in time to save the wedding.

We sat down with Drew Seeley to chat all about Lovestruck: The Musical! Check out the Q&A below. Make sure to tune in TONIGHT at 8PM on ABC Family!

CelebSecrets4U: Could you talk about how you prepared for this role?

Drew Seeley: It was a very physically demanding couple of days when Chelsea and I shot our duet.  We shot the movie in Pittsburgh, so anytime that I had free time, I would obviously hit the gym, and I love to run so I would run and explore the city and kind of discover Pittsburgh on foot.  I just tried to stay in shape and not eat too many of those Primanti Bros. sandwiches that are so awesome. 

One thing I did have to do to prepare was spend a lot of time with Tom Wopat, who plays the older version of me, because Sanaa, the director of the movie, wanted me to have a lot of the same physical ticks and way of saying things and expressions, because we’re the same person.  So that was kind of fun trying to emulate what he did, kind of copy him but make it 30 years younger.

CelebSecrets4U: So you had to get his mannerisms down?

Drew Seeley: Yes, that was tricky.  That’s the first time I’ve ever had to do something like that.  It was cool.

CelebSecrets4U: What was it about this particular role that interested you to be a part of the film?

Drew Seeley: The movie was produced by Debra Martin Chase, who really gave me my first break with “Dance with Me,” from Cheetah Girls 2.  So I’ve known her for a long time and hadn’t seen her forever, so it was really nice to reunite with her on this movie.

Plus, I’m an actor, I just love to work.  Some jobs are better than others, and this one was just a blessing in that I got to do everything that I love to do; sing, dance, and act, in one film.  This is one of those ones that you hope comes around more often.

CelebSecrets4U: Was there anything about the role that you added to it that wasn’t originally scripted for you?

Drew Seeley: No.  I just brought myself to the character, I think.  I just kind of put my own spin on it.  But as far as changing dialogue or anything, I didn’t really have that license.  There’s a time crunch on these kinds of movies.  I’m not the main character of the story, but my job is really to move the story along and support the story and what Chelsea is doing.  So I didn’t really have to do anything other than what was on the page, and that’s always nice. 

CelebSecrets4U: What was it like being a part of and working with such a talented cast?

Drew Seeley: It was great.  You always want to make sure that you’re not the weak link.  You’re surrounded by really talented, great actors and singers, so just staying on your game is the main thing.  But everybody was so nice, from Jane Seymour to Chelsea.  We all became friends very quickly and still talk and hang out.  Chelsea is actually coming to my wedding next weekend, funnily enough, to give you an idea.

It was a great experience.  Everyone was really cool.  Who knows, they may want a sequel or something and I will be game.

CelebSecrets4U:  Based upon your background with Disney with other musicals and shows, what sort of creative input did ABC allow you to have with Lovestruck?

Drew Seeley: I did get the chance to write a bonus track for the soundtrack, which is really nice.  I wrote and sang a lot of the music from Cinderella Story and the High School Musical stuff, so they knew that that was something that I could add to the piece of the puzzle, too.  There’s a song called “Here and Now” that’s on the soundtrack. 

Also, when I was recording my duet with Chelsea, “DJ Got Us Falling in Love,” they really listened to my input as far as what takes I liked and ad-libs, and making it sound like something that I could be proud of and release on my own and be proud of, as well.  So musically, definitely had a lot of input.

Acting-wise, I just went in and did what I thought the character called for.  I worked together with Sanaa to find the right levels and the right tone.  But like I was saying in the last question, everything was right there on the page for me.  It was an easy one, as far as some of these jobs go.

CelebSecrets4U: How does your past experience compare to working on Lovestruck?

Drew Seeley: I definitely called upon my dance background.  I think this movie is similar to Cinderella Story, at least the character that I …..  Performing – I did a show on Broadway a couple of years ago, I got to play Prince Eric for a few months, and we did eight shows a week.  It was a really grueling schedule; you had to have a lot of stamina.  I think that training came into play when we ended up shooting these numbers because Sanaa, the director of the movie Lovestruck, she comes from a music video pedigree, so she expects full-out numbers all the way through, no stopping to change camera angles, you have to do it the entire 110% every time, all day.  So I was sore for about a week, I think, after we shot our scenes, but I think it’s worth it; what came out on screen.

CelebSecrets4U: How long did you and Chelsea take to learn your big dance routine?

Drew Seeley: Two days.  We had two, maybe three rehearsals.  We shot upstairs, the beautiful, big theater that Jane Seymour has her “Just Dance” number in, we practiced upstairs in that same theater, Chelsea and I, to learn our song.  We only had two or three days, maybe four hours each time. 

They changed it a lot.  We’d learn the entire dance and then send it into the network and then get notes, and then we’d go back and have to change half of what we had just learned to something else to switch up the styles and make sure that there’s a little bit of everything in the pot.  So I think that was more of the challenge than anything.  You learn the dance, you go home, you study it and you cram, and then the next day you’ve got to unlearn half of what you’ve just learned and learn something new.  Then when we shot on that day, trying not to confuse the two. So that was a challenge, but it was fun.

CelebSecrets4U: What is your most favorite moment from making the film?

Drew Seeley: Besides hanging out at Craft Services and eating all of their glorious food – I would say the big “DJ Got Us Falling in Love” number.  We drove about an hour outside of Pittsburgh to a big mansion in the country and set up there for the whole day.  It was this beautiful, old mansion just in the middle of nowhere and we had the whole place to ourselves.  We set up the ballroom, there were tons of background actors there, cheering us on and clapping and really getting us into it, because there’s a lot of energy with people in the room, and that helped our performances. That was such a good memory.  Then they had a really cool little restaurant and bar there afterwards, so we all went and had chicken wings when we were done.

CelebSecrets4U: What other projects are you currently working on in either music or acting?

Drew Seeley: I’ve got two movies that I’ve shot that haven’t come out yet.  One is called Yellow Day and another is called Nonstop, which I’m actually filming right now.  That’s fun – it’s a suspense movie on a plane, and I play a flight attendant.  There’s no music at all in that, but we’re having a good time.

As far as other stuff – I’m starting to get into writing, as well.  I wrote my first TV pilot about two months ago.  I wrote a character for myself in a half hour comedy.  I’m going to start taking meetings and pitching that around town and hoping for the best.  See if anyone’s interested.

CelebSecrets4U: Where any funny mishaps while filming Lovestruck?

Drew Seeley: They were trying to make Pittsburgh look like Italy, and I thought that was funny because the leaves were turning because we shot it in fall.  They were freaking out because they were like we can’t shoot this angle because the leaves are orange and they would be green.  That wasn’t anything that I had to worry about, but I remember that was something that they were freaking out about a little bit.

There weren’t really any mishaps.  No broken bones, no twisted ankles.  I got out of this one unscathed.

CelebSecrets4U: You and Chelsea have this awesome love/hate chemistry going on.  Did that come naturally or did you guys have to kind of work at it?

Drew Seeley: It came naturally.  She’s just a great actress to play off of.  We just kind of looked at what Jane and Tom were doing as the older versions of us and the story, and we went with it from there. We were supposed to be exes, but I kind of thought of her as my sister, in a way, too, so that I could pick on her and make some of that believable. 

Written by Juliet Schroder

Juliet is the founder and executive producer/host of Celeb Secrets and Celeb Secrets Country. When not reporting on the latest news in pop culture and country music, she enjoys traveling, spending time with friends and family, and exploring the latest fashion trends.

Juliet holds a B.S. in marketing from St. John's University.