Are you aca-hyped for Pitch Perfect 2 to hit theaters on May 15? The only correct answer to that question is, obviously, hell yes. But, regardless of how excited you are to be seeing the Bellas return to the big screen after watching Pitch Perfect at least 1000 times since 2012, you excitement is nothing compared to how Ester Dean and the rest of the Pitch Perfect 2 cast felt when they got the call that a sequel was coming. "We were waiting for it — right when Pitch Perfect was done, they started talking about Pitch Perfect 2," Dean tells Bustle, "We were all just waiting for it to come through." And, thankfully, it did.
For Dean, Pitch Perfect — and now Pitch Perfect 2 — mark a huge transition in her career from being a singer-songwriter and voice-over actor to becoming a live-action star. The actress, who did voiceovers for Rio and the Ice Age films and recorded a song for The Lorax prior to following some advice to pursue live-action, says of landing her role in Pitch Perfect, "It happened so fast. I’d always said that I wanted to be in a movie like Grease, so I manifested it."
But her roles in Pitch Perfect and Pitch Perfect 2 haven't just brought Dean's career to the next level, they've brought her a handful of great and supportive friends among the rising young female stars in Hollywood. "Being in the family is the rewarding part," the actress says — well, that, and getting to see all of her costars and friends succeed outside of the Pitch Perfect franchise. "To see everyone growing outside of what they’ve already done — you see your sisters and you’re like, 'Oh, you’re all doing it,'" Dean says, "and they hear a song of mine and they start singing it and you’re just like, 'Yay!'"
The bond between the young, powerhouse female cast clearly runs deep. Dean can't say enough about how Chrissie Fit, who plays new character Flo in PP2, cracks her up on set — "I have to hold myself up because she’s just so funny," she tells Bustle. And don't even get her started on costar Anna Kendrick, "I don’t think people know how funny she actually is. I think Anna is the new Tina Fey," Dean says. "She cracks me up, she’s so witty. She’s my dream celebrity best friend." Honestly, she's my dream celebrity best friend, too.
So, with Pitch Perfect 2 right around the corner and already teasing incredible cameos, does Dean have a wish-list for Pitch Perfect 3? "You know what would be so cute — the little girls from Ellen — Sophia Grace and Rosie," Dean says. Which, I can't help but agree, would be freaking adorable. And now that she's sang and starred in both films, if Dean could do a riff-off in real life, she's all about going big or going home. "If I could do a riff-off and compete against people, it would be Mariah Carey, Beyonce, Patti LaBelle, and Aretha Franklin," the actress says, before adding that she'd throw Katy Perry in ("She'll surprise you.") and Mary J. Blige.
"That riff-off, with everyone having their own team, would be epic," Dean says, "I would still roll with my Bellas, but if we could all have acapella groups — I’d want them to have acapella groups — and I’d want them to go against the Bellas."
And, undoubtably, even with all of those powerhouse female artists coming up against them, the Bellas would probably win.
Images: Getty Images (2); Giphy