Known for Should've Put A Ring on It, He Heard My Cry, Jaded, and currently, For the Love of Jason, actor, writer, and producer Trell Woodberry is a rising star on camera and behind the scenes. Woodberry not only stars as the lead character Jason in his latest series but is also the creator and executive producer of the recently released UMC dramedy series.
For the Love of Jason chronicles the ups and downs of love, life, and dating through a 30 plus-year-old bachelor's perspective. Woodberry is joined by notable co-stars such as Jackée Harry, Kareem Grimes, Laila Odom and B.J. Britt, to name a few. The six-episode, half-hour series is directed by Michael Vaughn Hernandez.
Aside from having opportunities to be immersed in different creative roles in the film industry Woodberry also created his own production company, T. Wood Productions. In a conversation with QG, Woodberry shares how he got his start in the entertainment industry, a few details about For the Love of Jason and his upcoming projects.
As a North Carolina A&T State University grad with a BA in computer science, how did you make the transition into the entertainment industry?
I always knew I wanted to have a career in entertainment growing up, but at that time, there weren’t a lot of opportunities if you didn’t live in prime media markets like LA or NYC. I loved computers and was pretty good with math, so I decided that I would get a degree that could afford me the opportunity to move to one of these cities. After graduation, I ended up moving to Los Angeles with a software engineering job. From there, I started going on auditions and worked my way into doing entertainment full time.
What inspired the creation of For the Love of Jason and why did you feel his story needed to be told?
That’s a great question. For the Love of Jason was actually inspired by my battle with depression. I was struggling in just about every area of life—from my career to relationships and finances. I was lying in bed one night frustrated that a TV series idea I had was picked up [by a network]—it was in that moment that God spoke to me and said I needed to talk about all the things I was going through. That gave me the courage to pen some of my experiences through the lens of the show’s main character, Jason.
We rarely hear stories from the male perspective, and I wrote the series based on what would have helped me out as I was going through these experiences. It not only shows the male perspective of dating but also just a Black man trying to make it in everyday life and the challenges that are so often overlooked.
What was your most memorable experience when playing the lead character, Jason?
The most memorable experience as Jason would be my therapy scene. It was such a great moment because I’ve been going to therapy myself over the past year. I feel that it’s very important to show Black men the importance of taking care of yourself mentally. I stress to all my friends that it’s just as important to your health as working out.
As the creator, executive producer, and actor, how did all these different creative roles come together in the project’s development?
Whew! It's a lot!! There were moments when I was like, “What did I get myself into?”, but I wouldn’t change it for the world! I was very fortunate that Brett Dismuke (General Manager and Chief Content Officer, UMC) and the UMC family allowed me the opportunity to take on all tasks. Being that For the Love of Jason is my first project, my story needed to be told correctly in all areas. I had a very strong team that understood my vision and helped me execute in areas that I wasn’t able to.
What was it like to work with co-stars Jackée Harry, Kareem Grimes, B.J. Britt, Brely Evans, and Laila Odom?
It was surreal to be able to work with Jackée Harry!!! She is Hollywood royalty. I grew up watching her on television. I was definitely blessed to be able to work with her on my first project.
Kareem, BJ, Laila, and I created a bond that I can’t even explain. We have pretty much kept in contact every day since filming. I’m the newcomer of the group because they’ve all had numerous projects under their belt. They held me down and supported me anytime I felt like I was falling short or having a weak moment during a taping.
It only made sense for Brely to play my sister because she’s one of the people I consider family since I moved to LA back in 2004, along with Tabitha Brown (popular vegan food influencer) who is on the show as well.
How did your company T. Wood Productions come into being?
I started my production company in 2017 with my first short film, Jaded, which starred Tabitha Brown. I wanted to invest in myself to allow myself to create and have my voice heard. From that moment, I knew that I had to keep moving forward and continue to produce and write more content.
Do you have any future projects on the planning board or in current production?
Absolutely! Since wrapping the show, I have two projects currently in development that I can’t speak on quite yet; and I’m also going to go ahead and claim Season 2 of For the Love of Jason! So, I need all the Q Gents reading this to tune in and support [it]!
Check out the trailer for For the Love of Jason below.