Musician Pete Wentz says the young cast of new TV show School of Rock are like “little espresso shots”.
The Fall Out Boy rocker appears in two episodes of the small screen remix of the 2003 movie School of Rock, and loved working with the fledgling stars. Pete says it was a new experience for him and he was hugely impressed by the enthusiasm on set.
“I’ve never really done stuff with younger actors before and the energy level is off the charts,” he said in an interview with Billboard. “It’s like hanging out with little espresso shots.”
School of Rock is a new weekly series which will premiere in the US on Nickelodeon after the Kids’ Choice Awards on Saturday (12Mar16). It follows wannabe rocker/substitute teacher Dewey Finn – originally played by Jack Black in the movie, but portrayed by Tony Cavalero for the TV show – who puts together a rock group with his school students. Each episode will cover a famous song, and the film’s director Richard Linklater and producer Scott Rudin are among the executive producers.
Pete plays a hardcore rocker and old friend of Dewey’s who disapproves of his latest music venture.
“He thinks it’s silly that Dewey is now playing with these kids in a band, but you can tell he’s a little bit jealous,” Pete explained. “He offers a view into what Dewey’s life used to be like, and there’s a character arc where he changes a little as it goes on.”
The 36-year-old music star was thrilled to be invited to appear on the new TV show, especially because he loved the original movie and is a doting father. Pete has two sons - seven-year-old Bronx Mowgli with ex-wife Ashlee Simpson and Saint Laszlo, who will turn two in August (16), with Meagan Camper - and hopes they will appreciate his performance.
“It’s always fun to do something my kids can watch, too,” he smiled.
Pete is currently keeping busy touring Fall Out Boy’s album American Beauty/American Psycho in the US. He is still hugely proud of the music the band has created and has no problem with their reputation for being the “outsiders” of mainstream music.
“It’s still not a no-brainer. Our sound is not straight-ahead for pop radio,” he said. “Every song we’ve put out, even Centuries, none of them are straight-ahead top 40 radio. We walk in and they’re always like, ‘This is a little weird for is.’ Which is good. We’ve always been a little bit outsiders in pop culture and I think pop culture needs outsiders.”