About Kenan and Kel
Kenan and Kel met 3 years prior to the movie when they were chosen from a pool of several hundred young actors auditioning in 6 major U.S cities. The auditions were for Nickelodeons sketch comedy series “All That.”While Kenan had acted previously in such films as “D2 the Mighty Ducks ” Kel was not only a novice, but he was almost passed over at his audition in Chicago.
“It was an open call” Brian Robins recalls, “and we had seen far too many kids. Kids were coming in with tubas and rabbits, and tap dancing and ballerinas.. We were exhausted, and had even begun packing up to leave, until someone said “wait there is one more” then walked in Kel. He floored us, it was amazing, we just fell in love with him”
For Kel though it was another matter entirely. “I’d Had a lot of test that day and I completely forgot the monologue I had prepared, and i was late too. That’s why they had looked at 100 people before me. When I messed up I figured, that was it.But for some reason Brian asked if i would like to go outside and get my monologue and try again. This time I read it, and everybody started cracking up. Then they started to give me a lot of other improves and things to try. Not long after that I got a call to fly to Florida for the final audition.
Kenan Thompson came to the “All That” producers attention in an entirely different manner, albeit an unexpected one. Mike Tollin says “We had a friend who was working in post production on the second mighty ducks. We also sort of knew the director. Then simultaneously we heard from these two people that there was this kid, and he was going to be a star, that kid was Kenan.” Not only did both of the young actors exceed the expectation of the shows producer, another very pleasant result was created, a close friendship.
Thompson stated “I was the last cast member picked, and there was a big party out in Los Angeles. However, the others already had a get-together in Orlando and had already met. But I didn’t know anybody. When I’m in school I kinda just in the corner doing my work. I’m sort of shy. The moment I really hit it off with Kel was when we did our first sketch together, Mavis and Clavi, that’s when we really knew.” While performing skits with the ensemble cast of “All That” the two boys popularity skyrocketed, and this in turn helped lead to the creation of their own show, “Kenan & Kel” – Which was the highest rated program at its time.
The President of Nickelodeon said “Kenan and Kel are good friends off the screen too, and I definitely think that’s part of the amazing on-screen chemistry they have. They didn’t have much in common when they first started the show. Then they started working together and hanging out, now when you talk to them one guy will finish the other’s sentence. That magic definitely comes through on screen.”
“What I like is that we reach all types of kids with what we do.” Said 19-year-old Kenan. “Sometimes we will get letters from older kids, even adults!” Kenan & Kel’s wide audience appeal and success as a comedy duo on Nickelodeon, along with the polarity of the Good Burger sketch led to the question -what do we do with these two kids now? At that point, the film’s writers, Dan Schneider and Keith Kopelow & Heath Seifert, all got together and started to brainstorm. Schneider said “We all just sat around and kicked out story idea after story idea until, we realized, yes there really was a full-length movie that these two-who already had an enormous following- could carry.
The movie writers all agreed that a significant strength of the film lies with Kenan and Kel’s decidedly unique interpretation of it. “They really do feed off each-other. We write things that are sometimes amazing, and sometimes, not so amazing, but Kenan and Kel always turn it into something great. They are opposites, Kel is a broad physical comedian. Hes all over the place, bumping into walls, falling over – he’ll try anything. Kenan is much more subtle, with almost old school comedic timing. They balance each-other very well.”
Robbins said “there is no heavy message to convey in Good Burger. However one lesson that can be learned from Good Burger is how our fast-paced, highly-advanced technological world can sometimes leave more to be desired. We don’t have mom & pop record stores, or mom & pop[ burger stands or grocery anymore. Everything is a chain and a franchise and yes, I know that’s the price we pay for progress and convenience, but it takes all the heart out.