Paris Berelc is leaving tween TV behind at mach speed. Until now, she's been best known for her kid-friendly Disney roles and as the star of Netflix's feel-good teen sitcom Alexa & Katie, but her new series lets her grow up. Paris Berelc's role in Netflix's The Crew marks a shift to adult-oriented TV shows and movies, and she couldn't be more ready.
In The Crew, which hit Netflix with 10 episodes on Monday, Feb. 15, Berelc plays Jessie, an ambitious young NASCAR driver alongside sitcom vet Kevin James and Bridgerton breakout Freddie Stroma. The new show may have a somewhat similar setup to Alexa & Katie — it's another upbeat Netflix sitcom that makes for a perfect marathon watch — but for Berelc, the similarities end there. "It’s an adult sitcom, so that was different for me," Berelc tells Elite Daily. "I feel like I’ve been doing kids and family projects and The Crew was my first [show] where I got to be more mature."
That's partly why Berelc was drawn to the role. "I think I’m starting to get more into adult roles," she says. "This was definitely my segue to moving away from the kids and family category."
She also appreciated how the script portrayed Jessie's strength. "What I really liked about her was she was a strong female character, but they weren’t taking that and shoving it down your throat," Belerc says. "They don’t have to show you she’s a strong female character, she just is a strong character."
Berelc seems to be choosing her career moves carefully, as evidenced by her upcoming movie, 1UP. The drama — also starring Ruby Rose, Hari Nef, and Taylor Zakhar Perez — is centered around the rampant sexism in the gaming community and is inspired by the viral Gamergate controversy that made headlines in 2014 and 2015. "1UP is cool," Berelc says. "It’s about gaming, but it’s also about including everybody and that was the message I really liked from the script."
Despite entering this new chapter in her career, Berelc still has love for her earlier projects. In particular, she admits she doesn't feel completely done with Alexa & Katie. The third and final season of the Netflix series ended in 2020 with the two titular BFFs going off to separate colleges. The finale flashed forward to their first post-high school reunion over Thanksgiving break, but it still left fans — and Berelc — wanting more. "I keep saying I want to do one more thing for Alexa & Katie and then I’ll really let it go," she says.
It's unclear what Berelc's "one more thing" could be — perhaps a full revival following Alexa (Berelc) and Katie's (Isabel May) college lives or something smaller like a holiday special in which the duo reunites over another college break. Whatever the case, it sounds like Alexa & Katie fans can still hold out hope for *something* in the future.
For now, fans can catch Berelc zooming around the racetrack on The Crew, now streaming on Netflix.