Ryan Guzman may not be a name that you're familiar with but over the next year that's about to change. The former model is dancing his way into theaters on August 8 as the lead in the Step Up franchise's latest installment, Step Up All In. In addition to his role on the big screen, fans of ABC Family's hit series Pretty Little Liar may recognize him as Jake, a martial arts instructor who woos Aria (Lucy Hale) in the fourth season.
Both roles require a lot of movement on screen, keeping Guzman from losing that model physique that first caught the attention of producers and fans alike. That drive and focus instilled by the competitive world of martial arts and dance makes Guzman one person you don't want to turn your back on. It's probably why both Jennifer Lopez and the big screen adaptation of Jem and the Holograms scooped him up.
The actor opens up to Da Man about the discipline of stepping up, playing the boy next door, and his totally outrageous next part.
What attracted him to the role of Rio, Jem's manager, in the upcoming film adaptation:
"I initially decided to get involved with the project because it would be a chance to work with an amazing director, Jon M. Chu, and also to have an opportunity to work with Blumhouse productions again. I also loved the fact that they were reinventing Jem. I’d be stupid not to take this role."
On his upcoming role in Lopez's next film:
"Noah in The Boy Next Door was a complete change from any other character I’ve ever played. I had to become insane and obsessed with love. It was amazing to play something out of my comfort zone."
On overcoming his fears with each new role:
"I didn’t know about the dancing until I got the role of Sean in Step Up. It’s not really up to me to make those decisions on my characters yet. I’ve taken roles that scare me. Dancing in front of people used to scare me, and I thought there’s no better way to overcome that then do a movie about it. Singing also scares me, but I still took the role of Rio in Jem. I’m just trying to expand as a person and learn new things through my craft."
Check out Ryan Guzman showing of his stunning physique in a series of images shot by Mitchell Nguyen McCormack.
Read the complete interview at Da Man.