Jodi Lyn O’Keefe did an Call Conference with Starry Magazine about her role as Lionel Davenport in the tv show Hit The Floor. She is talking about her Twitter, new projects with Dean Cain, the cast members.
Q) You have often played devious and dark characters, but with redeeming qualities. Do you find Lionel to be the same?
A) She definitely has some redeeming qualities, but I can’t reveal them just yet because the creator has told me he’d stab with me a very dull knife if I gave away any spoilers. There is good in there. I just can’t tell you what it is yet.
Q) She has a lot of your hallmark traits of characters you have played before. Is that what drew you to the role?
A) When I first read it I thought, “This is a really sassy broad.” And I liked that. I am usually drawn to a character when she can either be a little bit bad or a little bit ballsy. It’s always more fun for me to do that. I’m always attracted to that type of role.
Q) Was there anything you added to the character that wasn’t originally scripted for you?
A) Definitely, she has her own signature walk. They have been calling it “The Lionel strut” on set.
Q) You have your own signature shoes it seems, too!
A) That was a gift from the executive producer/creator. They are Chucks with the character’s name on the side. We each got them. Mine says “Lionel” on one side and “Devils” on the other. We each got them as a wrap gift. It’s one of the nicest gifts I’ve gotten. Every cast member and every dancer got a pair.
Q) We know Lionel is the exwife of Pete. How will Lionel be getting in between Raquel and Pete?
A) At the moment, her concern is that she and Pete are still married in the public eye and they haven’t been divorced yet. So, she doesn’t want to take the press hit if he is seen with another woman publicly. That is really her motivation in the beginning.
Q) In what way then does Lionel connect to Ahsha?
A) Well, she is going to have to form some sort of connection with her because it is her husband’s daughter. He has just found out that he has this daughter and she has just shown back up in his life. So, at some point their paths are going to have to cross.
Q) Were you friendly with any of the cast members before joining the show?
A) No. I didn’t know anyone. I was the new guy on the set, in all respects. I knew a few people on the crew, but I didn’t realize that until I got there. There were some people on the crew that I had worked with before, but in every sense I was the new guy on set. They were just so welcoming and such a lovely group of people. I was nervous at first because they have that long standing relationship since they had been together for a season. They are very familiar with one another, but they were great to me. They welcomed me with open arms right away. It was actually really easy to jump into that family.
Q) You are a part of social media. How has it been getting instant feedback from fans after the shows air?
A) It’s still really new to me. I have had a Twitter account for a while, but I haven’t really been that active. It’s just lately that I am really becoming more a part of it because the show I’m doing is more social media driven and most of the actors are really involved. I have sort of been getting a crash course in social media and it’s been interesting. It’s phenomenal how quickly people will post a comment on a picture, the second you put it up. And it is instant feedback! It’s pretty great when the girls are doing a bit of a live tweet during the show. They’ll include me now and it’s amazing to be able to answer the fans right away.
Q) Is there anyone that you didn’t have any scenes with or many scenes with that you would like to film with in Season 3?
A) I would like to set a little more time with Kat Bailess. She really makes me laugh. I remember watching Season 1 and thinking how hysterical she was. And I’d really like to do something with her.
Q) What do you think it is about “Hit The Floor” that makes it a guilty pleasure for fans?
A) I think my dad really said it best when he said, “The show has a little bit of everything.” It’s got sports, dancers, it’s sexy, there is drama and there is comedy. It kind of has a little bit of everything for everyone.” I think that is the reason it has drawn in so many people.
Q) What are the other projects you have been working on?
A) I did an indie film with Dean called Merry Exmas and then I went to New York and filmed a pilot for CBS called “The Untitled Wall Street Project.” I don’t know where that will end up.
Q) What would you like to say to fans and supporters of you and your work?
A) I am really looking forward to what the feedback is during the season. There is a big Lionel metamorphosis. I’m excited to hear what the fans have to say from the beginning to the end. I’m proud and happy to be a part of the show. It’s a great cast and crew. They have been such a great family and I’m grateful to have been along for the ride.