Who is Kel Mitchell?
Kel Mitchell is an American actor, comedian, dancer and rapper known for his film roles and the Nickelodeon comedy sketch series ‘All That’. Kel started his acting career as early as the age of 12 with ETA Creative Arts Foundation and rocked the stage with his comedy and serious performances in the Chicago theatre circuit. At the age of 14, he landed up Nickelodeon’s Kid series ‘All That’, where he used his acting chops to the fullest and became one of the most sought after young comic actors. Soon after that, the roles started pouring in and one big break came in form of ‘Mystery Man’, a satirical superhero film starring Geoffrey Rush and Ben Stiller, and just like that, Hollywood welcomed this great powerhouse of a talent. He didn’t limit his talents to acting in TV shows and movies. He has also been a voice actor for many comedy animation films and has also appeared in a number of music videos, such as Kanye West’s ‘All Falls Down’.
Childhood & Early Life
Kel Mitchell was born in Chicago on 25th August 1978. He was inclined towards performing arts since early childhood, and he used to entertain the other kids through his mimics and other antics in the school. His parents saw the talent in him and supported him to follow his dreams to become an actor.
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Kel Mitchell started taking acting seriously by the age of 12, when he was accepted into the ETA Creative Arts Foundation, which nurtured young actors like him and made something out of them. In his early theatrical productions, which took place in his home city of Chicago, he enticed the audiences with his mesmerizing performances in plays such as ‘Kasimu and the Coconut Palm’ and ‘Dirt’. However, no performance of him would get him as famous as his role in ‘Eden’, in a show at Victory Gardens Theatre.
One of the prominent talent agents was sitting in the crowd and immediately got in touch with him. All this while Kel was 14 years old, and he got the chance to fly to Florida to become a part of a show on popular kid’s channel Nickelodeon. Thousands of kids were present there in the auditions and Kel beat everyone for the role, which would later change his life.
The show was named ‘All That’ and Kel remained a part of the show from its beginning in 1994 to 1999. His pairing with Kenan Thompson, his co-star on the show was so popular that they were cast together for several other projects such as a spin-off to ‘All That’ titled ‘Kenan and Kel’ and later in a full length feature film titled ‘Good Burger’. The film was an extended version of one of the best sketches from the show itself.
Kel embarked as a new star on the Hollywood skies and bagged some meaty roles such as ‘Sister Sister’ and ‘The Steve Harvey Show’ and in 1999, came his first major Hollywood role as the Invisible man in the film ‘Mystery Men’. He starred in the 2000 film ‘The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle’, starring Robert De Nero, Jason Alexander and Rene Russo.
He provided his vocal talent for ‘Clifford the Big Red Dog’ as a mild mannered and playful dog by the name of T-dog. Kanye West approached him to feature in the music video for his song ‘All Falls Don’, where he played the role of a luggage collecting valet. He also co-hosted a show named ‘Dance-360’ with Fredro Starr, and although the show lasted only one season, Kel received wide appreciation.
Kel portrayed the role of Manny Sellers in the popular sitcom ‘One on One’ and the next year, he featured in BET’s new series ‘Take the Cake’. Around the mid decade, his other important work includes a key role in ‘Honeydripper’. He also happened to appear for an audition for ‘Saturday Night Live’, but lost the audition to Kenan Thompson. However, in 2006, a strange incident occurred which made the rumors of his death spread across the social media.
He wrote and produced his first film in the lead role titled ‘Dance Fu’ in March 2008 and later in the same year, he featured in two Detroit based productions ‘Laundromat’ and ‘Affairs’ alongside some popular comics. His other appearances around that time includes G4’s ‘Attack of the Show!’ where he played several characters and later, he was seen in a kids show ‘Curious George’ where he played a recurring character.
Mitchell made his comeback to Nickelodeon with the show ‘Sam & Cat’, where he featured as a rap artist named Peezy B and presently, he is a cast member of a sitcom ‘Game Shakers’, which premiered on September 2015, where he also plays a rap superstar. In September 2015, Kel appeared on ‘The Jimmy Fallon Show’, where the host made him re-enact his role from ‘Good Burger’.
Apart from TV stints, he is in talks to feature in several films, both comedy and musicals. Talking about his music career, he has released many rap singles such as ‘Watch me do My Thing’, ‘We’re all Dudes’ and ‘Pedal to the Steel’. His songs are hugely popular among kids and thanks to his peppy lyrics, he has been quite a celebrity among them.
Kel Mitchell married his long-time girlfriend, Tyisha Hampton-Mitchell, in 2000 but the couple divorced in 2005 due to personal troubles. He maintains that he is close to two of his sisters, Kyra and Kenyatta.
In 2012, Kel got married to his then girlfriend, Asia Lee.
Kel also happens to be a motivational speaker and gives speeches at several schools and colleges and motivates students to follow their dreams.
He has done parodies of several songs by artists such as 50 Cent and Michael Jackson.