2020 will be the year of Katy Keene. The CW’s newest show is a Riverdale spinoff called Katy Keene. Like Riverdale, Katy Keene is based on the Archie Comics. The show takes place in New York as Riverdale’s own Josie McCoy movies to the Big Apple to advance her music career. There, she meets several new friends including Katy Keene, played by Lucy Hale. The show also stars Jonny Beauchamp who plays Jorge, a drag performer. We spoke with Jonny to talk about the new show which premieres in less than 2 weeks!
Young Entertainment Mag: You’re starring in the upcoming Riverdale spin-off, Katy Keene. Can you tell us about your character?
Jonny Beauchamp: I am! I couldn’t be more excited, honestly. I play “Jorge Lopez,” who is Puerto Rican boy from Washington Heights with big Broadway dreams. He encounters his fair share of rejection for “not fitting the mold” and decides to channel all that negativity into one fabulous positive; his Drag alter-ego, “Ginger Lopez.”
YEM: The show is premiering soon and fans are so excited! What can fans expect from the new show?
Jonny: Fans can expect a show that stands in the vein of Riverdale. Friendship is very much at the core of Katy Keene, but also lots of music and then of course, Katy’s passion for Fashion. What is special is that the town of “Riverdale” is as much a character in the show, and now similarly in Katy Keene, is New York City is also translated as a character.
YEM: The series stars Lucy Hale and Ashleigh Murray. What was it like to work with them?
Jonny: I cannot explain how lucky we are to have both Lucy Hale and Ashleigh Murray on the show. First off, they’re complete pros. The tone of a show and production comes from the top down, and when you have a group of people that truly care and Love their work, it makes for the most wonderful work environment, on and off camera. I’ve never been on a show where everyone gets on so well.
YEM: Josie McCoy is continuing her music career in this show. Will we get to hear your character sing on the show as well?
Jonny: You absolutely will! Singing has been my passion since I was kid, and I’m so happy to finally show the world that side of me in a big way. There will be some musical theatre stuff as well as some other musical elements.. I’m sworn to secrecy but I can say that Ginger gets some bops! I’m very lucky to have a team that thinks outside of the box and lets me just do my thing.
YEM: Did you feel any pressure entering into the Riverdale universe? Or entering the world of The CW?
Jonny: I gotta say I don’t feel any pressure joining the Archieverse. I actually feel pretty lucky because my character “Jorge” is actually completely new. The writers and production has been very open to collaboration and I feel I get to put my own stamp on and in the television Archieverse. A huge honor, to be honest. In the comics “Ginger Lopez” was one of the high school girls but never had major storyline. Through “Jorge” Ginger gets to be front and center and very much one of the “core four” on Katy Keene. On joining the CW Network, I gotta say I was really shocked. I never thought I was “CW” material. I grew up watching the network and even before when it was the WB. They always get the most stunning and beautiful people to act in their shows and I always felt like the “interesting wild card” in terms of acting and the roles I’ve played. I never dreamed that I’d be asked to come and play!
YEM: Were you familiar with the Archie comics before being cast on the show? Or had you been a fan of Riverdale?
Jonny: This is kinda funny, but yeah, I was familiar with the Archieverse. As I kid in the Bronx, I used to love to go to the corner bodega and get Bazooka Bubble Gum. In each wrapper there was a mini Archie comic strip. All the characters were there, Archie, Betty, Jughead, Veronica, and I’d read them and then stamp them to my wall using the gum they wrapped. I had this collage for a while before my Mom found out I was using gum to stick them to the wall. You can imagine what went down after…hehe
YEM: Can we expect any other Riverdale characters to make an appearance this season?
Jonny: I have heard whispers.. but nothing set in stone. Guess we’ll all just have to watch and see… 🙂
YEM: Josie comes from the small town of Riverdale to the big city of NYC. Are you more of a small town person or a big city person?
Jonny: Oh, I am a big city boy, through and through. But I did spend a few years in a small town outside of New York City, Suffern NY. It was sooooooo different from what I knew but I did, in my own way, come to love the town and the amazing national state parks. I lived just down the street from one, Kakiat Park. I was always there, daydreaming about being an actor when I grew up.
YEM: Finally, Riverdale always has a dark twist in its storylines. Can we expect some darkness from Katy Keene?
Jonny: Again, I’m sworn to secrecy… But I can say that the characters in Katy Keene encounter their fair share if obstacles… it’s New York City after all! But at its core, Katy Keene is show about friendship and achieving your dreams.