Calum Worthy Explains The Meaning of ‘Bodied’ & Working with Eminem | In Studio with THR


– Hi this is Marya Gullo
from The Hollywood Reporter and I’m in studio today
with Callum Worthy. Hey, how’s it going? – I’m fantastic. How are you? – Good. We’re here to talk about
your new movie Bodied. – Yes. – And the first thing I want to know is what does bodied mean? – Okay, so bodied it’s like when someone destroys another rapper in a round because it’s like they
did so well in the battle that they killed ’em and they’re
going to need a body bag. – Oh, nice. Okay. Got it. Got it. Yeah, this project is produced by Eminem. So how much did you know
about that coming in and what was your interaction with him? – I mean Eminem has been always
one of my favorite rappers. I grew up listening to him. 8 Mile is one of my favorite movies. So being able to do a
project with him was amazing and I mean he really raised
the bar for battle rap movies and he’s one of the best
battle rappers in the world. So the fact that we get his
stamp of approval means a lot. – Yeah. What’s the differences
between the battle raps in Bodied and in 8 Mile? Like, what should people expect? – Well the culture’s changed a lot. There’s no beat now in battle rap. So now it’s more like beat poetry. So there’s no music behind it. It’s just two people talking. What that allows for is a
lot more crowd interaction so you can play off of what other people are doing in the audience. The other thing that’s
changed is the world as well. Social media has changed, cultural appropriation
has changed a little bit, freedom of speech versus
where is the limit is a discussion that’s
really common right now and those are the two
things that we tackle which I would also argue
are two of the most controversial topics in 2018. – Right, which is really interesting ’cause when Eminem came
up the hip hop world was dealing with the same things. Very controversial lyrics,
lots of insults to people of everything from body
shaming and slut shaming and I mean, Eminem went
into it pretty hardcore and today we have like a different culture and a different environment
but it’s still kind of the same ideas that are being circulated. Like, how nasty can you
get with freedom of speech? – Exactly. Yeah, I mean in most of
the world it’s so hard to for good reason say certain things. You get ridiculed and censored
if you say certain things. Battle rap is a world where
you don’t necessarily. Like, two people can
be battling each other and they can do say
these incredible insults about each other and then
grab a drink afterwards. And it’s a really interesting
place to be right now because there isn’t many worlds where you’re able to say
those kinds of things which is the reason why it’s
not just a battle rap movie. It’s really a movie
about freedom of speech and raising a lot of questions. We don’t make any statements. We just want the audience to come away and talk about what
they got from the movie. – It’s kind of like being in a mosh pit. – Yeah. – ‘Cause everybody’s punching
and throwing punches. But then at the end of
the day if you fall down they pick you back up. They’re like hey, good job. – Exactly. – We did it together. – Yeah and that was the amazing thing is so many of these battlers
are friends in real life. Some of them aren’t. Some of them don’t get
along. The beef is real. But some of them they
actually are true friends even though they battle each other. – And what was your rap
game like before the movie? – I don’t think I could’ve
been a worse rapper before I started filming this movie. I don’t know if there’s a
worse rapper in the world than I was before filming this. That was the amazing
thing is that Joseph Kahn, the director of this film was, he was able to trust me with that and he wanted me for the role
but he told me, he was like, “You’re the worst rapper
to read for this project. I need you to learn how to rap.” And I can’t take any credit for the actual raps going well. It’s all because the battle rap community. They really embraced me and
they sent countless hours working with me. – Oh wow. – And breaking down every
single rap that we have to do and it’s really because
of them that I was able to learn how to rap. – Who were some of the people
that helped you along the way? – Disaster, who’s, I mean
all these guys are some of the best battle rappers in the world. It’s like Disaster, Hollowed, Loaded Lux, Kid Twist, Rome, Dumbfounded. They were all really influential. – So when you received your dialogue were you intimidated
by all the rap battles that you had to do? – I was intimidated and I
was also, I was nervous. I was really nervous
taking on this project. I was just coming off
of a Disney Channel show and there’s that period
of time after doing a kid’s program where you
really have to be careful about what projects you take. I was worried the subject
matter is very controversial. The themes are very controversial and I knew I risked alienating
a part of my audience but I knew that I had to take risks in order to expand as an actor and playing it safe wasn’t the best route and it wasn’t necessarily
trying to be edgy or break out of some mold
that I thought I was in. It was just around
working with storytellers that I really trust and
working with scripts that I thought were smart and were things that I haven’t seen before. – Yeah and this is happening during a really interesting cultural moment. This movie kind of goes
along with Blindspotting and Dear White People. What would you call this genre that we’re kind of coming into? Like this idea where we’re playing with the politically incorrect and
what kids are facing today. – Kids are facing a real eye-opening time. I think that there’s so much
exposure to so many cultures and people have the ability probably because of social media to speak up about what they believe in and also say when they don’t
think things are right. This movie asks a lot of those questions. Even though it’s in a way
that’s very in your face and can be aggressive at times. It’s no different than, the
battles are no different than two people arguing about different political beliefs on Twitter. It’s the same kind of thing except it’s just dialogue in a movie. – Right. And getting back to the rap battles, did you have a lot of one take deals or were there a lot of takes? – There was a lot of takes. I mean the movie is very cinematic and… But I will say when we were filming though we did it more like a play. So any of the battles you saw we did it in real time. And the final battles goes
for about 20, 25 minutes and we actually ran a lot
of those all the way through which is very unusual for film. I remember reading the
script and seeing my name, like the character name
and then seeing dialogue and I’d keep flipping the pages
and seeing no action lines or no description. It was just words. And I thought wow, this is
going to be really interesting but it really was like doing a monologue and then letting the other
person do a monologue and then you do a monologue
and then another monologue. It was really an interesting process. It felt like doing Shakespeare. – And when you were doing your rap battles even the other actors you
were figuring out kind of your personalities, your moves. It was all about the dialogue
and then you had to figure out how you were going to
present it physically? – Exactly and there was a lot
of rehearsal leading up to it. We had about three months
between the table read and the first day of production and I worked with battle
rappers almost every single day on the raps. So by the
time we actually got to set we were so well rehearsed
that we were able to just be in the moment and Joseph
was really sweet to us because he created this safe space because working with
actors that aren’t rappers and rappers that aren’t actors. But he made us all feel very comfortable because he treated it like a real battle. So I wouldn’t necessarily
talk to the other person that I was battling before. There’d be a few hours of
setting up and getting ready and I would be in my
own space getting ready as if I were actually doing a real battle and a lot of the people
that were the background in the scenes were unbelievable and I have to do a huge shout out to them because if it wasn’t for
the background performers in this movie, I wouldn’t
be able to have delivered a good performance. – Oh, they were cheering you on. – They were amazing for really long days. I mean some of those final
battle sequences took almost a week to shoot and
they were there the entire time and it was their energy
that really kept me going. – You probably have the
most, the hardest job as far as being controversial
or saying controversial things like everybody had to say
something that was offensive but you actually, your character’s thesis was on the use of the N
word in hip hop culture. So… – Yeah. – Was that uncomfortable at all? – Absolutely. I mean… I think that that word is one of the most violent words in the English language and I had never said it before this film. It was really tough. It was really tough to say those words because you don’t want
to put that out there. At the same time though
I knew that there was a bigger point and message to this film that I really wanted to convey. So in order to do that
if I did have to say it I would but I can go
on the record by saying I have never said it apart from the takes. Even at rehearsal I wouldn’t say it ’cause it’s very uncomfortable
for me to say that and since then I will never say it unless it’s for a really good project and I think that’s a testament
to the script as well and also Joseph as a storyteller. Because as a white actor to
say those kinds of things it’s tough and you’re risking a lot. So it’s really, you have
to do it with a story that you trust and with a
filmmaker that you feel safe with. – Okay so as a young person do you actually struggle with these issues or is this something that’s kind of a like more of a political subject matter or do you and your friends
actually talk about these things? Like what’s politically correct? What people should be doing,
what they shouldn’t be doing. – I think that’s all I talk about now. It seems like it’s a moment. Maybe it’s because I’m young and I don’t recognize
other moments in history where we’ve had those kinds
of moments of awakening but it really feels like my
eyes are opening up everyday to the struggles of
other people in America and around the world and
just trying to find a way that we can respect and talk to each other in a way that actually is
with love and not with hate and there’s so many
things that I grew up with when I was younger that I
thought were appropriate that I now realize were quite insensitive and I’m so grateful for this time because I think it’s a time
that we really can discuss it and hopefully the next generation they’ll have never
experienced any of that. They won’t have a childhood of seeing things on TV that weren’t necessarily politically correct. Hopefully they’ll be in a world where everyone’s respected equally. – Nice. And yes, if you watch this movie eventually you will be offended. Is there a character that
you identify in particular in this movie ’cause you
have a lot of different interesting kind of stereotypes of different types of people. – Right, yeah I mean the
character goes to Berkeley and he’s around a very
privileged group of friends and they have their own
judgements on the battle rap world but at the same time
they aren’t necessarily authentically participating
and understanding that. So by placing judgment on it, they actually are being quite insensitive because they’re not
authentically participating and understanding that
there are some rules that don’t apply in that world
but other rules that do that don’t necessarily apply
in the world at Berkeley. So, those lines are very interesting and I feel like that, I’ve seen
conversation with my friends go like that where they’re trying to be overly politically
correct and not realizing they’re actually being a
little bit insensitive. – Right. – So I think it’s a time, it’s
a really good time to just approach every conversation
with an open heart and open eyes and be
as careful as possible but also ask questions. If you’re not sure of something I think it’s important to find out. – Right and at the end of the day the most important thing is
your actions not your words. – Yeah. Exactly. Exactly. – So I have a couple of questions for you. What was the first job that
made you think I’ve made it? – I could tell you the first job. I was an extra in Air Bud
three when I was seven and I walked on that set and I was like, I think I got this. I think I’m a movie star now. (laughing) And then since then, I increasingly
think I haven’t made it. I think it’s because I
keep working on projects with filmmakers that I look up to and actors that I look up to that I feel like I’m never going to make it. I’m just hoping that I just
continue to work with people that inspire me and that
help me grow as an artist and I hope I never grow
to the point of making it. I hope I’m continuing to learn every year. – Well, I can tell you
I’ve talked to actors who are in their 70s who said
I’ve never had that feeling. So, I think the bar just moves
forward as you get older. – And I hope it does. I hope it does. I hope I get to continue to be challenged and never feel complacent. – Best day on the set of Bodied? – The best day, everyday was amazing. It really was. Like, everyday it was
like my artistic soul was so fulfilled. The final battle that people
will see in this movie was a really special moment because the scenes were so long, everyone
had to stay in character. You wouldn’t be able to do those scenes unless you were approaching
it in a method way and the battlers were as well. And it was an amazing time
’cause we were working with real battle rappers
and in scenes with them and we were learning more about
how to perform a battle rap and the battle rap culture and they were learning more about acting. And what we realized is
that we’re very similar. We have the exact same job. We’re storytellers. We’re just telling a story, even if they’re telling it in
a different way than we are they’re telling stories. That’s what rap has always been about. That’s what hip hop has always been about. That’s where hip hop comes
from is through storytelling and in battle raps they’re
telling their own story and their own perspectives or they’re trying to
tell someone else’s story to get at them and that’s what we’re doing as artists as well. So, those days where we
had these massive battles with all these battle rappers
together were so special because I just have so
much tremendous respect for that community and
for all the battlers that I worked with and the
battlers I didn’t get a chance to work with too. I’ve seen hundreds of battles online. I’ve become obsessed with this culture and they really are the,
they’re modern day poets. – Do you have any desire to
throw your hat into the ring? – I would love to. I really would. I don’t have the skills. Like, I realized that people
might watch this and think oh but you could rap in that. But that took a lot of work. These guys are, they’re just so talented. I mean not only are they
able to battle in real time, they don’t get a take two. Like, these battles, they’re live. It’s like a boxing match with words and if you slip up you lose. So they really, they’re
professional actors who perform monologues for a living. – Yeah. (laughing) The last movie that made you cry? – I saw A Star is Born last night and I’m still tearing up about it. It was one of those movies
where you watch it and think, maybe I should quit. Like, it’s so good. It’s so well done and the
performances were so amazing I thought, I’m in awe. – Worst piece of career
advice you’ve gotten? – Worst piece?
– Yeah. – The worst piece of career advice probably be careful what you work on. A lot of people in this industry encourage actors to be extremely picky which I think is a valuable thing. You want to be consistent
as much as you can in terms of telling
stories that mean something and projects that are at a certain bar. But at the same time, your job is to act and you want to have as many experiences as possible and I worry that some
young actors approach picking projects too carefully too soon and they don’t get the
exposure to other projects. Like I think it’s really important to do a wide array of styles and genres so that you can really hone your skillset. – Test the waters. – Yeah, I mean honestly
I wouldn’t have been able to do Bodied had I not
done a Disney Channel show. (laughing) – So I wanted to talk
to you about a couple of other projects that you have. One is some charity work that you do with the ONE Campaign. – Yeah. – What’s the ONE Campaign? – The ONE Campaign it’s
Bono’s organization and I’m working with them in terms of helping to get girls educated
in developing countries. It’s an incredible organization. I encourage everyone to check it out. There’s a lot that people need to realize in terms of girls being
educated in developing countries and it really by supporting girls in East Africa and around the world, you’re supporting your
own country as well. And the more that we can
encourage our politicians to put money towards girls’ education, the better our world will be all around. – Yeah, absolutely. – I mean there’s 130 million girls that weren’t able to go to school today and I hope that the next generation and my kids eventually, my future kids, won’t have that as a reality and I want every girl to be educated and able to go to school. – Yeah, education is the key to getting people out of poverty. – It’s the key to getting
people out of poverty. It’s one of the keys to a lot of the world’s biggest problems. And we need more women as leaders. In politics, in finance. We need it in all aspects. We need more women to be in charge. – Absolutely. And you’re also working on a
project with Hulu right now. You’re filming?
– I am. Yeah, yeah it’s called The Act. I haven’t started yet. I start in three weeks. They started production in
Georgia about a month ago and it’s a really special project. These storytellers that I’m
working with are amazing. It’s a true crime show and I feel like we’ve seen a lot of that
but you’ve never seen anything like this. This is told in a
completely different way. A woman named Dede and her daughter Gypsy and their relationship is something that you’ve never seen on TV before. – Interesting and it’s Patricia Arquette? – Patricia Arquette and Joey King as well. – Excellent. Excellent. We’ll be looking out for that. Callum, thank you so much for dropping by. – Oh, thank you so much.
– And the movie is Bodied. Go check it out. – Appreciate it. Thank you. – Bye.

100 thoughts on “Calum Worthy Explains The Meaning of ‘Bodied’ & Working with Eminem | In Studio with THR

  1. Thought this guy was like 17, I thought ''he's young, that's why he's so naive''. Turns out he's only one month younger than me.

  2. Very honest kid. Love watching his interviews. Very interesting seeing him in a different light from Disney to this movie. Well done Calum👏🎉🎉

  3. love how humble this dude is and how he shouted out all the battle rappers for helping him learn how to rap.

  4. Excellent analogy with Battle Rap being like a mosh pit, throwing punches, but picking each other up collectively at the end 👍👍👍👍

  5. man i love some white ass bitch interviewing for a rap movie. this hoe is worse than complex and buzzfeed combined

  6. Finally battle rap getting appreciation/attention it deserves. James Corden my ass

  7. This guy has no clue, talking about Safe Spaces. Makes me not want to even watch the movie

  8. Google –
    Alumni Dissertations Volume II – Lyrical Raw BY UNKNOWN, CONNUNDRUM, CHERNOBAL, FOURCLONEZ Featuring SINCLAIR This is where Kid Twist and Eminem got the concept from. The racial stuff came from posted text battles but that forum had mysteriously been deleted. Canibusdotcom

  9. I know this movie is going to be dope…I can't wait to see it!! I know all the battllers killed it, congrats to guys like PAT STAY, for getting there just do!

  10. This woman needs to do something other than this lmao, do some research before you do this shit

  11. Oh gawd…Bitch stfu! Dammit. I can't see the whole video, this lady just gets to me

  12. how can you say his one of the best battle rapper if his never battle no one on smack url.

  13. He looks like Conan O'Brien when he nods his head and his hair bounces up n down 😂😂

  14. whos dick do you gotta suck to get a part 2 out of this movie or heck a netflix TV show

  15. So did any even notice the Black cat In back ground of 7 scenes???

    Easter egg….

  16. "If you watch this movie, you will be offended." You may be. I wasn't at all. Man, this whole interview… I hate this chick.

  17. Anyone noticed the black cat appearing at parts of the movie? Also srsly I want another, what happened to his ex? And grym? His future?

  18. This was one hell of a movie. The plot gets a little predictable towards the end but that doesn't ruin the movie. All in all I gave it 8.5/10.

  19. Watch this movie, look at many review, and I still don't know if this movie is based on live character like Eminem in 8 miles, or is this just a made up story of another white wrapper.

  20. Calum absolutely killed his role. I've known of his existence for a while but I wasn't expecting the movie to be as good as it was.

  21. um. REAL BATTLING IS ALL FREESTYLE. MAKE AS YOU GO. YOUR NOT SUPPOSED TO WRITE TO A BATTLE. EVER! corny

  22. Should've been a different interviewer who actually knows what there doing 😂😂

  23. "I dont thing theres a worst rapper around the world" LMAO THERE ARE SO MANY!!!

    Lil Pump
    69
    21 Savage
    Kodak Black
    Lil Xan
    Lil Skiies
    Lil Baby
    Any Lil bitches that doesnt know how to lyrically rap
    And many others that uses autotune and mumbles

  24. for all those who didn't see this movie plz do, joseph kahn directed the shit out of it.

  25. I’m weird. I don’t fit in. And I don’t wanna fit in.

  26. the moment he said "nigga " is the most violent word in English i started hating him

  27. This SJW bitch interviewer is annoying AF. No lady, your bizarre obsession with victimizing everyone and being "offended" by everything does not apply to society as a whole. The majority of people can't stand you and your weirdo group of friends. Go back to your safe space and hate the first amendment amongst each other and PLEASE leave us alone!🖕🏼

  28. Loves em and saw a star is born I love him even more a star is born is my favourite movie .

  29. This chick is literally what this movie makes fun if gid dam she's anoying

  30. This interview bitch is the same as his bitch gf in the movie

  31. This kid needs to stop virtue signaling towards Hollywood or he's really going to get bodied by the real world.

  32. Wtf is up with the black cat in the movie that shyt kept throwing me the fuck off

  33. I thought at the final rap battle he was gonna start going "NOW EVERYBODY FROM THE 313 PUT YOUR MOTHERFUCKING HANDS UP AND FOLLOW ME"

  34. It's the one word answers she gives. That makes this interview horrible. The actor was great at the interviews. Nothing bad with him

  35. This movie left me with more questions than answers but I still really liked the movie.

  36. "You're such a pretentious prick
    you have peppermint excrement.
    You stay trolling all-boy high schools,
    "that's why you dress up in this preppy shit" "

    Man that bar works so well on you rn lmao

  37. Can we switch this interviewer. She clearly does not understand what rap is 🤦🏻‍♂️

  38. Hey everybody
    The nerd from Austin and ally is dominating rappers nowadays🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

  39. This guy coming off Disney but he so safe with everything and had an idea of what's okay and what's not, he had alot of respect for this or that. This guy is different

  40. she would be fun to have a crochet contest with (seriously, she knows how to control boredom well)- you can tell how bored she is with this……she probably has a deep hip hop collection…this guy though..yawn……….i feel bad for her. sexy, intelligent….fuck it…i'd eat eat her @$$…the thing i find interesting is how his hair is flopping like Conan O'Brian's does when he gets excited and how she is trying not to laugh at his hair, flop flop flop flop- check your stylist…..

  41. see, what i think has happened is prior to this interview- he totally went for the "can i put my penis in you MS. Lady cause i just starred in a rap movie and im a hard G, vibe." and she was like "yo, can you validate my parking?"…the whole time she couldn't stop thinking about how……um.."proper" …cough..cough white..cough….cough privileged..cough….this dude is. flop flop flop…..smh, i bet she has Dr. Octagon bumping in her car.(Dr. Octagon is a good thing)

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