You know her as the talented yet emotional mean girl from Pitch Perfect, but her husband (Hi, Skylar!), family, and friends know her as a hard-working and kickass-smoothie-making professional living out her lifelong dream. Think you couldn’t learn something from a celebrity? Think again. Anna Camp is here to share with you the lessons she’s learned in Hollywood, her tips for staying healthy with a hectic schedule, and the big thing she and I have in common (Hint: We share an affinity for the number Eleven…). Read on for your new favorite smoothie recipe (and a new favorite movie star!).
Name: Anna Camp, Actress
City: Los Angeles
Education: BFA from University of North Carolina School of the Arts
What was your first job, and how did you land it?
My first job was actually a commercial for Enterprise Rent a Car. I went on one audition, had a callback, and then it ran with the Super Bowl!
Did you always know you wanted to act?
I’ve been acting since about second grade. My sister got into acting before I did. It’s something I always wanted to do. I remember getting in front of the class when I was younger and reading a little poem and knowing that I always wanted to tell stories. I even watched old movies growing up. I’ve always wanted to do it.
How have your dreams and goals changed since what they were when you first decided to pursue an acting career?
My dreams and goals have changed! When you’re young, you think “I want to be a famous movie star,” and that’s not the end game. As I’ve gotten older, I want to play incredibly challenging and good roles no matter what the medium and have a long career. I think maybe in high school I wanted to be a teen movie star, but now I’ve realized it’s all about longevity. Just to be a working actor when there are so many actors competing for roles. I always want more and it drives me to keep going. But, it’s about having that long career for me right now.
You have to be prepared for all types of rejection when you’re acting, but it’s especially tough in your early 20s. You’re still figuring out if this career is really made for you. When you’re immediately hit with rejection and you’re not booking jobs, the key is to be persistent.
Success doesn’t come overnight. Tell us about a time in your life when you were fighting to make your dreams come true.
I always think back to when I first graduated college. I moved to 189th Street in New York City and I was walking to and from the subway going to three auditions a day some days. I was getting a lot of rejection and feeling really tired and hopeless about whether I was going to book that first job. You have to be prepared for all types of rejection when you’re acting, but it’s especially tough in your early 20s. You’re still figuring out if this career is really made for you. When you’re immediately hit with rejection and you’re not booking jobs, the key is to be persistent.
What’s one thing that would surprise people about you?
People would be surprised that I can freestyle really well sometimes. Not always, but when the inspiration hits, it’s amazing.
Tell us about your fitness routine.
I live in Los Angeles and I try to work out about 4-5 times a week. I have a dog, Rocky, who I’m always taking out hiking. I like to be outside and in the sun — wearing sunscreen, of course. I love going for a run outside. However, I do also go to the gym and enjoy being on the elliptical machine. It’s all about movement for me — I’m not a yoga person. I also lift free weights at the gym and do some crunches!
Does your fitness routine change depending on what project you’re currently working on?
The only way it changes is the amount of time I have to work out. Right now, I’m doing a play in New York for the fall and I’m walking everywhere! It’s helpful, since you can walk off what you eat. I haven’t had time to go to the gym, so I’m watching what I’m eating. I’m trying to watch my dessert intake since I can’t work out. Once the show opens, I’m going to bike with my husband and walk my dog more.
Like many people, my favorite project of yours is Pitch Perfect. Did you have to change your fitness routine and eating habits to prepare to play Aubrey?
I’m pretty lucky — I definitely work out, but I don’t stress about it too much. I do watch what I eat, but I eat what I want. It’s about portion control. When doing the Pitch Perfect movies, we have to be at the shooting location four weeks earlier to learn the dances. While we’re dancing, I am burning so many calories — we’re dancing from 10 am to 6 pm! It’s a great workout. I think that was super helpful for preparing for Pitch Perfect.
I do watch what I eat, but I eat what I want. It’s about portion control.
The hours of a working actress are definitely not typical. How do you keep your energy up during long days?
I really like Emergen-C. Recently I’ve been starting my day off with it. Vitamin C is super helpful, since I don’t want to get sick. I also like to eat a lot of fruits and vegetables. I do have to have my coffee, too! I love a good almond milk latte. And I like to keep a little tin of almonds with me because it curbs my cravings. I won’t reach for the cookies if I have my almonds, which is good because sugar can give you a crash.
Do you like to cook? What are your favorite foods to prepare?
I do like to cook, though I haven’t had a lot of time to cook lately. I like to cook a black bean and sweet potato quesadilla with a corn and mango salsa. I also like to make a BBQ potato chip chicken with tequila lime vinaigrette. My go-to side dish is steamed broccoli, and I also love to make salmon.
I hear you make one heck of a smoothie. Can you share your secrets?
Yes, I do love making smoothies! I will use a banana, almond milk, and four or five actual almonds thrown in. Then I use a little bit of protein powder — there’s this kind called Dope Naturally, which is yummy and has whole sprouted watermelon seeds in it. The last ingredient is a little kale, and then it all gets thrown into a Magic Bullet.
What’s one thing you ALWAYS make time for, no matter how busy you get?
No matter what, I always make time for my husband and dog. They are the most important things to me in my life. I have to sit at home with my husband until I fall asleep and talk about my day and listen to him about his day. There’s nothing more important than family.
Where do you see yourself and your career in five years?
I hope I’m just doing older, wiser roles — I’m not attracted to the type of roles that I used to do. I’m ready to move to darker, grittier roles. I’d like people to say that I have a wide range.
Take some time to know that this is the one life you get and not to stress out so much.
What advice would you give to your 23-year-old self?
I would tell her to breathe, relax, and stop and smell the roses. I’d tell her you’re gonna get busy soon and not to be so worried about success. Take some time to know that this is the one life you get and not to stress out so much.
Anna Camp is The Everygirl…
Favorite Aubrey line?
“My dad always says, ‘If at first you don’t succeed, pack your bags!'”
Last TV show you binged?
Stranger Things. I can’t wait for the next season!
Last time you were starstruck?
I just did a movie called Egg with Christina Hendricks and was a huge Mad Men fan. I never got to spend time with her when I was on the show, so when we first came in for the read-through, I immediately thought, “Wow, it’s Joan from Mad Men!”
If you could have lunch with any woman, who would it be and why?
Hillary Clinton, because I want talk to her and ask her for some shred of possible hope regarding what’s happening in politics now.