UnREAL’s Josh Kelly on Jeremy and Rachel’s “Deep Love”

James Dittiger
James Dittiger

After last week’s episode of UnREAL Rachel (Shiri Appleby) sure seemed to be getting closer to “Everlasting” bachelor Adam (Freddie Stroma), something that isn’t pleasing to her ex, Jeremy (Josh Kelly). Despite being engaged to “Everlasting” makeup artist Lizzie, it’s pretty clear that Jeremy’s still got feelings for Rachel. Will he act on them? The two have a very complicated, if somewhat unknown to viewers (just what DID happen in Mexico?), past and are just one of the many story lines we here at The TV Junkies are loving about UnREAL‘s first season.

In order to get some answers about where Jeremy’s head lies right now, as well as what it’s like being part of a television show exposing all the outrageous behind the scenes happenings of reality TV, The TV Junkies caught up with Jeremy’s portrayer, Josh Kelly. Kelly filled us in about the challenges of filming a fake television show, where he thinks Jeremy’s heart really lies and shared some funny stories about living with co-star Stroma during filming. Read on for his thoughts.

TheTVJunkies:  So does doing this show live up to your preconceived notions of what filming reality TV must be like or were as surprised as the rest of us that that is how it all works?

Josh Kelly:  I was surprised. I guess I have been around it but I don’t really pay that much attention to it. I’ve kind of known because I live in Los Angeles so I have a lot of friends that are involved doing reality shows so you hear about how scripted it is, but yeah it was still really surprising. It’s been really fascinating too because through the show and social media I’ve become friends with people that have been contestants on dating shows and they’ve commented that it’s even more real than I thought it was.

TTVJ:  Technically what was it like to film on set? There were a lot of extra people and cameras on set. Was it difficult?

JK:  Yes, especially in the beginning because you don’t know who’s crew and who’s cast. You’ll expect someone to do something, well not me because I’m an actor, but some of the directors would be like, ‘OK we need to set up this flag’ and the guy would be like, ‘uh, I’m an extra, Sir.’ So it was kind of funny but you get used to it.

TTVJ:  Did you guys figure it out fairly quickly or were there a lot of mistakes being made?

JK:  Yeah in the beginning, and it kind of gets in your head because you’re shooting a show about shooting a show. I know for a fact, and I’m sure some people will try to deny it, but everyone had nightmares about shooting. You’d wake up and you’d be like, ‘Am I supposed to be filming now? Am I allowed to be here? I don’t remember.’

TTVJ:  Jeremy and Rachel have very much been the heart of the show but we don’t really know a lot about their history. Are we ever going to find out what happened in Mexico? Can you give us any hints?

JK:  It reveals itself slowly. I think the writers did that in order to one, draw it out and two, not paint themselves into a corner. More will be revealed but there’s more that can be revealed hopefully throughout the next couple seasons.

James Dittiger
James Dittiger

TTVJ:  Can you give us any hints?

JK:  I’m always really hesitant about divulging information but you will see in Episode 8 or 9, you will definitely see more of what Rachel and Jeremy were.

TTVJ:  Is Jeremy the guy that only wants what he can’t have, like Lizzy said? Or does he actually want more with Rachel?

JK:  No he wants something more. I think the struggle that Jeremy is going through is the one that a lot of people go through with relationships. He’s got a safe bet with Lizzy, his fiancé, and he might have a happy life with her. But he knows that he might have an amazing life with Rachel but it’s a very big risk. So it’s like do you go for the fun crazy girl and maybe make it, that one in a million chance, or do you maybe settle for someone who doesn’t necessarily make you super happy but will make your comfortable for the rest of your life?

TTVJ:  So do you think his heart lies more with Rachel than with Lizzy? 

JK:  Definitely. He loves Rachel, they have a deep love, or at least that’s how I see it.

TTVJ:  A few episodes back he and Rachel almost hooked up in the barn. What stopped him then and why go for it now? 

JK:  I think it was a bunch of stuff. Part of it was guilt. He is engaged and he doesn’t want to cheat on his fiancé but I also think that he felt like he was falling in to “The Rachel Trap.” She’s really good at manipulating people and it kind of frustrates him. He sees her doing it to the contestants and he kind of felt like she was doing it to him and that’s what it feels like being in love with her. It’d almost like being a contestant.

TTVJ:  Do you think Jeremy will ever actually step up and make a decision between these two women or is he just going to keep flipping back and forth between the two of them?

JK:  I think he will make a decision pretty soon…

TTVJ:  Does Jeremy suspect this weird love triangle with Adam? If so, how does he feel about it?

JK:  He is definitely suspicious. He caught her on camera by accident and gave her the footage. He knows her so well that he saw her feeling things so he is definitely suspicious. I think he thinks higher of her than Adam does though. He thinks Adam is a dorka milorke. That’s a scientific term I believe.

James Dittiger
James Dittiger

TTVJ:  I was told that you and Freddie Stroma were roommates when you were filming, is that true?

JK:  Yes. Yeah we became friends when we shot the pilot in Atlanta and when we got picked up, I think it was like twenty minutes after I found out that we got picked up and were going to Vancouver I called Freddie and was like ‘So want a roomie?’ Because frankly he’s a lot more responsible than me so I figured that he would sort out getting us an apartment and such, and he did. It was great, we’re still really great friends.

TTVJ:  Do you have any interesting stories from when you were filming? 

JK: [laughs] Apparently every single one of my friends got married while I was in Vancouver (filming) so I had to come back several weekends in a row and I left a prank device in Freddie’s room. It was kind of a mean prank. We were doing night shoots so we were shooting during the nights and sleeping during the day and it was sweltering hot and bright in our apartment. In my room I had blacked out the windows and gotten an air conditioner so when I left I told him if he was having trouble sleeping he could feel free to sleep in my room. But what I didn’t tell him was that I hid a pranking device in his room that was a little speaker and a magnet and a battery that every ten minutes does a cricket noise.

So the entire weekend he couldn’t sleep. I told him he could sleep in my room but he didn’t. And I didn’t know but he had to work the next day and apparently when he got to the makeup chair he was like [with a perfect Freddie Stroma accent] ‘a bloody cricket, we’re on the eleventh floor. Every time I try to find it it shuts up and then right before I fall asleep there’s that cricket again.’ I didn’t intend for him not to sleep, I just meant it as a joke but yeah, all weekend he couldn’t sleep because there was a cricket in his room that he couldn’t find.

TTVJ:  The show took a darker turn with Mary’s story. Are the remaining episodes going to be a bit lighter or do they get even darker?

JK:  No they lighten up. These last two episodes have been really, really heavy. Which is good. But it does start to lighten up. It’s still serious subjects and stuff but it’s definitely happier and more fun.

TTVJ:  Now that the show has been renewed for a second season have there been any talks as to what that might look like? A new bachelor or maybe a bachelorette?

JK:  They are figuring that out. I talked to some of the producers yesterday. There are a lot of ideas that they are kicking around but they are going to take their time and do it right, which I’m all about. It’s really nice that they aren’t rushing and they haven’t rushed the show. I auditioned for it two years ago and it kept getting pushed but that was because they wanted to take their time to do it right and they’re doing that again. I would much rather be on a show that is all worked out in a year from now than a show that is rushed.

TTVJ:  They have really done a great job with it this season. It’s really impressive how it’s all come together.

JK: I know, I’m so excited.

TTVJ:  Was there anything else that you wanted to add?

JK:  Just that everyone should keep tuning in. There are some twists and turns that are coming up that are unexpected and it gets really fun. You won’t see what’s coming for sure. Oh man, I can’t wait for everyone to see it. No one knows what’s happening.


Do you think Jeremy should go for it with Rachel? What are you looking forward to in the rest of UnREAL‘s first season? Sound off in the comments below!

UnREAL airs Mondays at 10 p.m. on Lifetime and Lifetime Canada.