KeKe Palmer Makes a “Joyful Noise”

In our January/February 2012 issue, we spoke with KeKe Palmer about her upcoming film, Joyful Noise, co-starring Queen Latifah and Dolly Parton. Make sure you grab it to see more of what she had to share! Until then, here’s some GT CONNEXT exclusive bonus content from our interview with KeKe:

GT: Speaking of Queen Latifah, you worked with her before, in Barber Shop 2. What was it like working with her again, and what was it like working with Dolly Parton on this film?

KEKE: It was awesome. With Dolly being such a huge icon, you\’d think she might be extremely guarded, but she\’s really not. She\’s such a sweet person– she\’s open, loving and caring. She\’s an amazing person. I wish everyone could get a chance to meet her.

Queen Latifah is the same. I was really happy to work with her on this film because this time, because of my age, she was able to talk to me more about her career and the things she\’s been able to do. It was awesome to listen to her share about all that she\’s done—really inspiring.

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GT: A lot of your peers in Hollywood make some not-so-wise choices—drugs, alcohol, sex. What has kept you out of the gossip rags and the tabloids?

KEKE: I honestly don\’t know. I\’m just not interested. I don\’t mean to sound like I\’m the perfect kid, but it really doesn\’t interest me. Anything that makes me lose control of myself—it\’s not exciting to me. I would never want to go around at a party or something and found out later that I did something crazy, and not even know that I did it! (laughing)

GT: So, tell us a bit about the music in Joyful Noise. With the plot containing an element of a choir competition, it kind of has the vibe of a musical to it. How would you describe the music in this film?

KEKE: The music is very good. Everybody will probably know most of the songs—they\’re mainstream songs turned into gospel music. That\’s what I love about it. I get to do [Michael Jackson\'s] “Man In The Mirror,” I get to do “Maybe I\’m Amazed” by Paul McCartney, we do songs by Earth, Wind & Fire, Usher, Chris Brown… a lot of different music, but we add in the faith element.

GT: We also heard that Mervyn Warryn, who is a brilliant writer and arranger, worked on the soundtrack for this film. What was that like?

KeKe: It was amazing! Mervyn—well, I always call him Merv—he\’s such a nice person. He\’s a great vocal producer and he\’s just amazing. A very talented man.

Check out the trailer for the upcoming feel-good choir film, Joyful Noise, right here–

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