Nick Shares Details From “Drumline: A New Beat” Set

Nick Cannon – actor, producer, stand-up comic, TV host, musician and husband of a singular pop star – has brought back his Devon Miles character from “Drumline” 12 years after the fact in a new VH1 film set to debut this fall.

“Drumline: A New Beat,” shooting in Atlanta this month, is not focused on Devon, who will nonetheless make a small appearance. In a video interview below, he joked that as an executive producer, he was obligated to show up in the film.

Besides, Cannon said he will always have a soft heart for “Drumline,” because it was his breakthrough film performance in 2002. The now beloved film about an outsider trying to fit in the tight culture of black college marching bands was shot in Atlanta for $10 million and made nearly $60 million in the box office.

This “new generation” version will focus on a brassy, confident college freshman at the fictional historical black college Atlanta A&T played by relative unknown actress Alexandra Shipp. (Singer and “Single Ladies” actress LeToya Luckett will play a college dean.)

Cannon told me he hopes to leverage the film into a TV series, much like VH1 did with “Single Ladies,” which is now on Centric.

Cannon, who has been married to Mariah Carey for six years, juggles a crazy work schedule with family obligations. His fraternal twins are now three years old. “Family is first and foremost at the end of the day,” said Cannon on Wednesday. But, he noted, “they were born into a moving lifestyle. They were in France with their mom yesterday. She’s at a show in Cannes. During the summer, I find some days to relax.”

But when? He’s curating the soundtrack for the film with artists from his own label. He worked an overnight shoot last night until 6 a.m. today for “Drumline” at Clark Atlanta University’s outdoor football stadium. Besides being active casting, scripting and producing “Drumline,” he recently directed and wrote ”School Dance,” a film which comes out in theaters July 2. He describes it as a raunchy coming-of-age story along the lines of “House Party” and “Animal House.”

He also hosts and produces his own comedy sketch show “Wild ‘n Out” on MTV2, which returns that same day.

And he is also host of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent,” which goes live in late July.

“It’s the best summer job ever,” said Cannon, who has been attached to the show since 2009. And better yet, last year, Howard Stern forced the network to move the show to Radio City Music Hall, which is most convenient for Cannon, who lives in New York.

His most notable bit so far on “AGT” this season was pretending to be a contestant: a mime with a bad attitude. He totally tricked the audience and the judges.

“I like to do characters and wear disguises,” Cannon said. (This white face act was received better than another one he did.) The judges “had no idea what was going on.” He said he took no mime classes. He just improvised. “I was there to get 4 x’s.”

He said he comes to Atlanta often. He did some casting for “Wild ‘n Out” at Uptown Comedy Corner. He has come here many times for “America’s Got Talent” auditions. And he loves the Waffle House.

You can check out the video of the interview on

Source: Atlanta Journal Consortium